A Better Atonement: The Book

My new ebook, A Better Atonement: Beyond the Depraved Doctrine of Original Sin is now available on Amazon for $2.99. The 13,000-word book has three sections:

  1. A history of the doctrine of Original Sin, showing that we should now reject it;
  2. A defense of the historical, bodily crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus;
  3. A tour through the many theories of the atonement.

While some of the material has appeared previously on this blog, a great deal is new — including my own choice as to the best among the atonement theories. So pick up download a copy today!

(If you’re unfamiliar with ebooks, they’re quite easy to read — for instance, you can download a FREE Kindle reading app to your PC, Mac, tablet, or smartphone.  (Or, you could buy a Kindle for as little as $79 — I was given one as a gift, and I love it!)  Then, with a couple clicks, you’ll be reading the book!)

I’ve Been Jacked by a Couple Methodists

This post is part of the Patheos Book Club. Check out the Book Club for more posts on this book, an interview with the authors, and for responses from the editors.

In their new book, Hijacked: Responding to the Partisan Church Divide, pastor Mike Slaughter and activist Chuck Gutenson have given us a valuable book on how Christians of different political persuasions can nevertheless maintain faithful and congregational unity.

This is, I must say, an overcrowded genre. Since the George W. Bush years, the Christian church has been politically polarized. A spate of books has been published in response. Hijacked is one of the best in that crowd, IMHO.

Slaughter and Gutenson are Methodists, and it shows. That’s not a bad thing. In fact, I think it makes their argument stronger. It embeds them in a tradition and gives them credibility. They end their book with an appeal to the (forgotten?) Methodist practice of “holy conferencing,” quoting a Methodist report:

As we seek to steer conversations toward a deeper level of meaning—hopefully—resolution, we can utilize principles of holy conferencing to do so. Holy conferencing starts from our own stories—it is more about who we are together than who is right…all parties must be willing to consider they may be wrong about an issue that is important to them.

Hijacked has a surprisingly robust middle section on logic. It may come off a bit philosophical for the lay reader, but I think it’s the strongest part of the book. In it, they deconstruct the statements that many partisan Christians often use, and they show that these are often illogical.

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Other Piles of Books: Easy Chair

And, completing the cycle of posts on my piles of books, here’s what is currently sitting by my easy chair in the living room (the chair by the remote control and, therefore, nearest to Battlestar Gallactica on Netflix):

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Other Piles of Books: Bedside

After getting lots of snarky comments on last week’s post that showed the pile of books on my desk, I thought I’d open myself to your ridicule on my other piles. Today, my bedside pile:

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