Stonehenge, Yucca Mountain, and the Bible

How long can history and memory be preserved without any written record? And, even if we stipulate that some vestigial memory might linger after many centuries, is there any way to separate those legitimate memories and histories from all that has accumulated around them? It’s a tantalizing problem. We want to know more than we do — maybe more than we can — about the ancient past, but the record of it just isn’t there. What we have, instead, are ciphers and puzzles, with few clues to understanding them. [Read more…]

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That time when five women sued God and won

Everybody is familiar with the story of Noah in the Bible, but many people don’t seem to realize that the Bible actually gives us two Noahs — two different stories about two very different people named Noah. That’s odd, in part, because the story of the other Noah appears three times. And because it’s a way better story. [Read more…]

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NAE: Our politicized white theology has nothing to do with politics or race

The National Association of Evangelicals invites you to bow down and worship the “highest authority.” No, not God, silly. The Bible — the “highest authority” before which even White Jesus must kneel in submission. [Read more…]

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Lectionary line (11.14)

Here are my predictions for the readings from the Revised Common Lectionary you’ll be hearing preached on in sermons this Sunday, ranked from least- to most-likely. [Read more…]

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Just before it all blows to pieces

To tea-party Republicans in Maine, Episcopalians are dangerous “anti-Christian bigots.” Plus: An inspiring conversion narrative from Libby Anne; Scarlett Johansson reads the Bible; Mansonite white terrorists; and the red-cup guy battles imaginary Satanists while real Satanists take “GetReligion” to school. [Read more…]

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Al Mohler’s pompous piety can’t make chicken soup out of the chicken-poop argument invented to justify slavery

Al Mohler is not saying anything Southern Baptists haven’t said for 170 years. He is only taking their argument and altering a handful of words in five paragraphs to apply it to a new subject. By restoring his op-ed to something more like the original ca.-1845 template Mohler is copying from and re-applying we can see not just how and why Mohler’s argument is wrong. We can see how and why Mohler himself has to know that it has been wrong all along. [Read more…]

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I’m glad Westboro Baptist is protesting meteorology

Our imagined “biblical stance” on meteorology changed in exactly the way that, for many American Christians, our “biblical stance” on biology never did. We Christians easily, almost imperceptibly, changed the way we understood all those Bible passages about the weather. But for many American Christians, doing the very same thing with all those Bible passages about the origins of life is portrayed as a grave and dangerous sin. [Read more…]

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Lectionary line

My pick for this week’s sermon has everybody’s favorite passage from Ruth edging out a fine, but maybe too Mark-ish, entry from Mark’s Gospel. This week’s Psalm is a dark-horse contender, but the New Testament reading seems like a hopeless longshot. [Read more…]

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