Smart people saying smart things (7.12)


The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings on the Christians who would have turned Jesus and Mary away at the Egyptian border. Rachel Marie Stone on the death toll of anti-birth control sanctimony. William Lindsey on the cultural captivity of the anti-gay church. And Andrew Bacevich and E.B. White on the perils and the promise of American democracy. (And I'm still hoping the WordPress excerpt feature gets fixed.) The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings, "Christians worship a child who fled violence in his home … [Read more...]

Whatever happened to the clobber texts for slavery? (Unlearning the lies, cont’d.)


For centuries, Christians have been arguing over the clobber texts used to deny women's equality in the church and in society. Those Bible passages -- a dozen or so verses selected from the origin stories of Genesis, the laws of Moses, and the epistles of Paul -- are hotly contested in an ongoing argument over their meaning and interpretation. Every year we see a new crop of books devoted to the exegesis of those verses, granular studies of first-century Greek terms and their cultural … [Read more...]

Gatekeepers are losing their grip

Some gatekeepers keep outsiders out. Others keep insiders in.

"Evangelicals Are Changing Their Minds on Gay Marriage," Jim Hinch reports for Politico: Increasingly, even evangelical Christians, long known for doctrinally condemning homosexuality, are embracing gay people, too. Over the past decade, evangelical support for gay marriage has more than doubled, according to polling by the nonpartisan Public Religion Research Institute. About a quarter of evangelicals now support same-sex unions, the institute has found, with an equal number occupying … [Read more...]

Smart people saying smart things (7.2)


Dietrich Bonhoeffer, in Ethics God loves human beings. God loves the world. Not an ideal human, but human beings as they are; not an ideal world, but the real world. What we find repulsive in their opposition to God, what we shrink back from with pain and hostility, namely, real human beings, the real world, this is for God the ground of unfathomable love. God establishes a most intimate unity with this. God becomes human, a real human being. While we exert ourselves to grow beyond our … [Read more...]

I guess it could have been a dream


• The great state of Kentucky -- home of the Creation Museum, the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, the Big Bone Lick and marriage equality. • Another Florida election goes wrong: Just a week after her coronation, the winner of the 2014 Miss Florida pageant was dethroned on Friday when organizers said they had crowned the wrong woman after a vote-count error. ... The ballot counter didn’t see that one of the five judges had changed his mind, writing a new line up on the left-hand … [Read more...]

I try to describe it, can never succeed


• Kimberly Knight has a terrific rant on "5 things you really mean when you say 'I don't approve of your homosexual lifestyle.'" She reminds her fellow Christians, yet again, that this slogan of "homosexual lifestyle" isn't something that intelligent and/or decent people should be using: "Frankly honey, you sound ignorant. Ignorant because you are evidently not thinking beyond what you have been taught to parrot." One of the real meanings communicated by that slogan, Knight says, is "ICK! … [Read more...]

Heterosexual marriage still unthreatened in all 50 states


Today turns out to be kind of newsy -- and good-newsy at that: 1. "Indiana’s Marriage Ban Struck Down; Marriages Can Begin Immediately" Federal District Judge Richard Young has ruled that Indiana’s ban on same-sex marriage runs afoul of the U.S. Constitution’s due process and equal protection clauses. And because Judge Young didn’t issue a stay, his ruling takes effect immediately. The county clerk in Indianapolis (Marion County) has already announced that they are issuing marriage … [Read more...]

Don’t even speak of the beat menace


• Eventually -- perhaps a generation from now, perhaps two, but not much longer than that -- there will be a statue honoring Kate Kelly in Salt Lake City. People there will find it confusing. Either it will confuse them because the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will have become more inclusive, and so the idea of excommunicating an advocate for women's ordination will seem strange, or else because the LDS won't have become more inclusive, and thus most people seeing the statue … [Read more...]