Archives for April 2011

Humanity Among the Stars

Christian scientists Karl Giberson and Francis Collins encourage evangelicals to move away from the scientifically dubious young earth, intelligent design and anti-evolutionary positions that have dominated evangelical and fundamentalist thought for the past century. They advocate a position labeled BioLogos, which combines a theistic worldview with an acceptance of science as “a reliable way to understand the world.” In short, they maintain that science reveals how God has chosen to organize the universe and the life within it. [Read more…]

The Sinless Jesus? A Book Review of Greg Carey’s Sinners

Arguably even more provocatively titled than the book itself, Carey asks about “The Sinless Jesus?” in a brief interlude between Chapters 5 and 6. This alone is worth the price of admission. Carey first names some of the classic proof-texts for the doctrinal claim of Jesus’ “sinlessness” (Hebrews 4:15; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 2:22; 1 John 3:5). Importantly, Carey shows that Jesus’ personal sinlessness — even if that was the case historically — is not sufficient; instead, we know now that there are also corporate, institutional, and systemic sins such as racism, sexism, and war from which no individual can escape complicity. [Read more…]

Sinners: An Accessible and Uncomfortable Read

As a Christian, I find Greg Carey’s book Sinners an uncomfortable read. Repeatedly it adjusts the lenses we use to look at Jesus, making his wider cultural context come into sharper focus. This allows us to see the ways that Jesus (and his earliest followers) violated the norms and expectations that provided his society with structure and meaning. The result is a deeply informative exploration of the New Testament. [Read more…]

The Unrespectable Jesus

Greg Carey’s new book, Sinners, is a focused look on Jesus and his followers. We often have a saccharine view of Jesus, that he befriended good men and women who wanted to live according to the commandments and according to love. Yet we forget that Jesus’ friends were prostitutes, tax collectors, people who were unforgiving, Gentiles, and so forth. [Read more…]

Jesus as Deviant: A Historical Review in the new book “Sinners”

What if the commonly accepted norm for Christianity marks a gross deterioration from God’s purposes and standards? Greg Carey revisits Jesus’ central identity and meaning in his new book “Sinners.” [Read more…]

Science is Not the Enemy

The best of science and the best of theology work together to give human beings deeper insight into the workings of the universe and, subsequently, into the work of God. This simple assertion lies at the core of The Language of Science and Faith. [Read more…]

The Language of Science and Faith: Both/And

A recent Gallup poll says 44% of people in the United States believe God created humans fewer than 10,000 years ago. And we wonder why our educational system is ranked 17th? But given this sad reality, I’m glad that Karl W. Giberson and Francis S. Collins wrote The Language of Science and Faith. Because if you get to the point that you can no longer stomach a faith that requires belief in a God who created the universe a few thousand years ago, and tried to trick you into thinking it’s old by creating light beams in transit from distant galaxies, when you can no longer deal with a controlling, “loving” god who perpetually lets you down, then blames you for it by labeling you a sinner, when you’ve given up on that god, only to be horrified by the meaningless existence served up as “pure science,” well then Collins and Giberson will shed light on a path that leads toward what you once thought was the dark side. [Read more…]