About Morgan Guyton

I’m the director of the NOLA Wesley Foundation, which is the United Methodist campus ministry at Tulane and Loyola University in New Orleans, LA.

Jesus’ cross shows that divine authority comes from the margins

There's been a storm in white evangelical Christian twitter recently. Tish Warren, an Anglican priest, wrote a piece in Christianity Today asking who's in charge of the Christian blogosphere. She focused on the way that popular Christian writer and blogger Jen Hatmaker changed her stance on the gays and wondered what tradition she gets her authority from. While conservatives like Warren think of authority in terms of tradition, the authority I understand to be central to Christianity is the … [Read more...]

The narrative that’s destroying United Methodism

There’s a narrative circulating around United Methodism. It goes something like this: if preachers would just “preach the gospel” and teach the “orthodox” Christian faith, then every church would be booming in attendance. Those who circulate this narrative love to cite John Wesley’s fear that Methodism will become “a dead sect, having the form of religion without the power.” I share Wesley’s fear, but I have a different understanding of its manifestation. I think that a formulaic understanding of … [Read more...]

The debate that’s older than Paul’s letter to the Galatians (#NoSuchLaw)

The United Methodist Church faces a major flashpoint next week when our Judicial Council meets to decide whether lesbian bishop Karen Oliveto can be summarily dismissed from her post without a clergy trial. It's a fascinating test because a true judicial conservative in the mold of Neil Gorsuch would be constrained by the limits of the United Methodist system of polity and protocol and say that Oliveto must face a formal charge and a clergy trial for her consecration as bishop to be challenged. … [Read more...]

Freedom, inspiration, and solidarity: how I understand Christian salvation today

I have spent most of my adult life trying to figure out how to talk about Christian salvation. I never really bought into the cheesy heaven and hell described in the pop evangelical afterlife insurance sales pitch. Pop evangelical salvation is so obviously tailored to worldly middle-class consumerism that it's simply embarrassing. But I've also become increasingly uncomfortable with the "inclusivity" of progressive Christianity insofar as it is unserious about addressing the bondage that sin … [Read more...]

Why I wish Donald Trump would read my book

 If I’ve learned one thing in the year since I released my first book, it’s that I’ve got more Donald Trump in me than I’d like to admit. My particular version of mediocre white male messianism was to try to make American Christianity great again through a book that wasn't a total flop but definitely wasn't the bestseller I dreamed it would be. In order to mark the one-year anniversary of my book release, I thought I should write another post about the book to inch my way closer to the p … [Read more...]

Can Easter be more than the church’s self-congratulatory triumphalism?

I've never known what to make of Easter. For evangelicals, the big day is Good Friday, when Jesus dies for our sins so we can avoid being tortured forever in hell. Easter is like the confirmation email that the payment went through. Since I've developed a more complicated understanding of the cross, it seems important to wrestle with the meaning of Easter.We visited a large evangelical United Methodist church at the beach this morning. The pastor quoted NT Wright several times in his sermon, … [Read more...]

Seven ways that Jesus died for our sins

Painting by Bec Cranford-SmithWhat does it mean that Jesus died for humanity’s sins? It’s a question that I could answer with perfect clarity when I was a nine year-old Southern Baptist. Without batting an eye, I would have told you that Jesus had to die on the cross for our sins because otherwise God would have no choice but to torture us in hell forever. But three decades of reading the Bible since then have ruined all the simple answers I was given as a child.For most of my life, I’ve … [Read more...]

Help us rebuild flooded homes in Louisiana!!!

In 2016, Louisiana was hit by two of the most devastating floods in our history. In March 2016, flash floods inundated western and northern Louisiana. In August, southeastern Louisiana got hit. Many homes that were destroyed did not have flood insurance since there had never been flooding where they were located. So many families lost everything. The Louisiana Conference of the United Methodist Church has been working hard to rebuild homes and provide support to the families who are suffering. … [Read more...]

Detoxify Christianity: A FB Live Video Series for Lent

If you don't think there's anything toxic about American Christianity, then you can stop reading now. For the past decade or so, many evangelical Christians like me have been trying to find our way out of toxic culture war. We are troubled by the way that the theology so many Christians use uncritically today has been appropriated for centuries to justify colonial conquest, genocide, and slavery. We do not recognize the religion of "law and order" and "God and country" to be authentic Ch … [Read more...]

My ashes are my promise to resist sin (Ezekiel 9:4)

It's no secret that the mainline church would prefer not to talk about sin. That's how the ashes we put on our foreheads on Ash Wednesday came to be about "mortality" instead of sin. So we spend the day "contemplating our mortality," whatever that means. But when the Hebrew prophets covered themselves in ashes and sackcloth, they weren't philosophizing about death. They were lamenting their sin and the sin of their society. Ezekiel 9:4 offers a different vision for what Ash Wednesday could s … [Read more...]