Does God the Father Suffer?

Fred thinks so, and I agree, in spite of the heresy of Patripassianism:

Don’t get me wrong, I believe in the Trinity, in one God in three persons. This is a historically Christian way of talking and thinking about God. It’s a helpful and insightful metaphor. And it’s a metaphor that can be supported by several passages in the Bible. But it’s not actually a biblical metaphor. It’s something that Christians have, for many centuries, laid on top of the scriptures, but it was never something we found there in any explicit form.

Set aside all the whole Monster Manual of traditional heresies and heretical -isms, where theology often starts to get into trouble is when we elevate our metaphors about God and begin worshiping and serving those metaphors rather than worshiping and serving God.

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Hey Slacktivist, Here’s Another One for the Bonfire List

Blogger/rocker Brianna Kocka

Like so many of us these days, Brianna Kocka is on the boundary of faith and doubt, Christianity and non-Christianity. She’s blogging through her thoughts and experiences. I met with her last week, and she’s sharp. You should read this post, and subscribe to her blog:

So where did this break down for me? I can’t remember if it was while I was in class, or maybe I was doing some reading on Socrates. Either way, I came across his paraphrased quote: “All I know is that I know nothing.” It was like ripping a muscle to make you stronger: it hurt like hell when I read it, but I knew, in all of its humility, that there was something there, it was burning and ripping something new in me. If there was one assertion that could ever be made, it was that we can’t fully ‘get at’ anything, except admitting that we can’t.

This Socratic concept was an act of grace and humility for me. I began to accept that my worldview was but a speck in the great cosmos. In this I had to admit to myself that maybe, just maybe my understanding of the Bible as I knew it was wrong, or at least not right. My foundation was crumbling, and next I had to ask myself, ‘how then do you view the Bible?’

Upon a lot of introspection and critical thinking, I’ve now learned that most of what I am reacting to is bad theology.

Read the rest: Blame it on Socrates: The Bible and Doubt | brianna kocka.

See Fred’s amazing Bonfire list for more women theobloggers.

Gigliogate and Evangelical Identity

Fred makes the salient point that Gigliogate and the Chik-fil-A fustercluck are basically the same. Evangelicals wade into the public square, air our their opinion on a social issue, take a beating in said public square, and then crawl back into their holes, wailing that they’ve been discriminated against.

Well, Christian Smith predicted all of this. 

Smith did all of us who follow American evangelicalism a great service with his 1998 book, American Evangelicalism: Embattled and Thriving.  Therein, he described how evangelicals have developed a “sub-cultural identity,” wherein they told themselves a story about their own position as an embattled minority, even as they became the most powerful bloc in our society.

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Andrew Sullivan and the Future of Blogging

Andrew Sullivan may change the face of blogging. Or maybe not.

Last night, Courtney and I watched Downton Abbey. I find it little more than a soap opera in tuxes, but I enjoy it. However, what we both commented on at the end was that, thanks to its airing on public television, we were able to watch a two-hour show, uninterrupted, with nary a commercial. Same goes for other great shows in recent memory, like The Wire and The Sopranos (both on HBO). Be it a donation or subscription, viewers are supporting the production of these shows by paying a monthly or annual fee.

Last week, premier blogger Andrew Sullivan announced that his online real estate, The Dish, would be moving away from ad-driven hosts (he’s been with TIME, The Atlantic, and, most recently, The Daily Beast/Newsweek). He’s asking for an annual contribution of $20, and in less than a week, he’s raised half of the $900,000 budget that he needs:

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