More Discussion by and about Christian Liberals and Progressives

More Discussion by and about Christian Liberals and Progressives February 13, 2013

Several blogs have focused in on the subject of liberal and/or progressive Christianity since I posted on the topic a couple of days ago.

Bo Sanders argues that Liberal and Progressive are terms that need to be distinguished, with the latter being more postmodern, among other things.

Tony Jones asked whether he fits into Roger Olson’s category of “Liberal Christian.” Roger Olson followed up by posting on the definition of fundamentalism.

Bruce Gerencser asks a “what if” question – what if he had been exposed to liberal and not only Evangelical forms of Christianity.

David Henson blogs about reclaiming repentance as a progressive Christian emphasis.

Finally, Frank Schaffer’s piece mentioned in my last post was taken up and reposted by Red Letter Christians.

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  • Rob Davis

    I wonder if distinctions could be made with all of these terms between the “academic” use of the words and the more “common” use.

    This was my response to Roger here on his confusion about the word “fundamentalism”:

  • I have truly wondered what would have happened to my religious journey had I been exposed to liberal, emergent or progressive Christianity before I left. These are all terms I really did not understand until I started blogging on religion. But I don’t think the question is as simple as that. What would have equally mattered is WHO was in those circles and what the organization was like and what connections it offered me.

    For religion is far more than ideas — understanding that was actually what started my questioning. But now, no matter how Christianity is spun, being long free of investment in the social aspects, I can’t imagine ever going back.

    Apparently Olsen’s 6 Markers for liberal Christianity are:

    (1) No miracles

    (2 & 4) Bible ain’t holy

    (3) Jesus not a god

    (4) No Jesus Salvation Magic

    (5) No Jesus Returning

    But Bo Sanders feels they are still better than secular humanists because for three redeeming Christian traits:

    (1) They participate in the Christian tradition

    (2) They use Christian narrative and vocabulary

    (3) They belong to Christian community.

    Bo wants to say that makes it OK to call yourself a “Christian”, Olsen says “No it ain’t”.

    Like I care about the name. Olsen’s belief are ridiculous to me and Bo’s attempts to keep the Christian brand vital are silly too. But I’ll rejoice any day over a Bo than an Olsen.

    Well, that is if I understood the whole thing correctly.