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The Body Politic of God, Part II

Who Is the Whore of Babylon?

A typical interpretation when reading the Book of Revelation is John’s attempt to answer the interminable question: How exactly will God, once and for all, set things right? When will the “sorrow and weeping be no more,” and the “tear wiped from every eye?” After reinterpreting over and over again the imminent end that has been repeatedly put on indefinite hold, it merely begs the question, why the postponement?

When Revelation is instead understood to be political commentary spun in the form of a fantastic allegorical tale that can be reinterpreted and applied again and again, the question in each succeeding era has more to do with asking the question: Who is the Whore of Babylon, and all she represents? How can we be so easily seduced? And have the words and life of the Galilean sage been lost, even from the time John had his nightmarish vision to our own succumbing today? Read more.

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Clear Faith: Clearing Away Stumbling Blocks for a Faith that Makes Sense

Are you disillusioned by some aspects of Christianity, like having to believe the right things to “get saved”? Like the idea that an all-loving God would sentence anyone to hell? Like understanding an often contradictory Bible? Then meet CLEAR FAITH. Clear away those stumbling blocks to uncover a faith of your own that makes sense. Meet the Jesus we can truly call “brother.” By seeing with new eyes, through a clear lens, we can experience and live with a simple, straightforward faith that is globally inclusive, open, and compatible with a progressive, scientific worldview.

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Wisdom and (or is it ‘vs’?) Religion- sermon video

Community Christian Church

The ancient Jews revered wisdom but in our times it often seems religion actually reveres ignorance. This is a crucial aspect of progressive Christianity- we are willing to start a church that rejected all forms of magic or superstition in favor for a fact based spirituality.

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Lectureship that Challenges What is, in the Name of What Can Be

21st century Christianity is thus wedded to the world view of its 1st century scriptures, its 4th century creeds and its 13th century liturgies. Consequently Christianity presents itself to potential modern believers encased in a series of doctrinal and liturgical forms, undergirded by a theological point of view that communicates almost nothing to those people who gather in church to worship. Why is there any surprise that the number of worshipers is in steep decline? Modern Christianity offers only two alternatives. The first is to close our minds to the explosion of knowledge in order to build a protective fortress around the religious formulas of antiquity.

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Ears Wide Open? A Video on Suicide Prevention

By: Terrie Johnson

My name is Terrie Johnson, and I am employed as the senior editor at a nationally recognized advertising agency in Kansas City. I’m also the author of two published books, an awarded public speaker, and I write …

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Thoughts on a New Creed

The early Church appears to have been satisfied with the simple affirmation ‘Jesus is Lord’, discovering the Spirit in the power of resurrection. Perhaps our task as progressive Christians is to reinterpret these concepts for our present time. I suspect that this will have more to do with discipleship than with the worship of a divine Christ (Matt 7:21).

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New Creeds

The Christianity we have inherited in the 21st century is like an onion, with Jesus’ wisdom at the core and layers and layers of church doctrine added over the centuries. Each of those layers was a solution to a problem in its own time. Progressive Christianity has let go of virtually all of those layers, recognizing that the core teaching – the Jesus experience, if you will – is what transcends time and is worth preserving. The result is that most progressive Christian churches no longer use the old creeds. We are not willing to recite what we cannot believe.

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The Canberra Affirmation

As progressive Christians in the 21st century, we are uncomfortable with rigid statements of belief, as we recognise our understandings are shaped by life experiences within cultural and environmental contexts. Yet, there are some common understandings which continue to shape our lives, both individually and in community with others. These we seek to affirm and celebrate

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A Confession of Faith

“The Christian Creeds--A Faith to Live By” Monika Hellwig, 1973, Pflaum (revised for inclusive language)

We believe that happiness awaits humanity and that our existence is not absurd.

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Meaningful creeds for the 21st Century- Q and A with Bishop Spong

John Shelby Spong Question & Answer

Nina Brock from Ovando, Montana, writes: Question: Your comment in a recent column about Paul not being able to say the Nicene Creed prompts a question. We attended your week long seminar in Berkeley, CA, last summer …

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Nicene Creed (NEW)

We believe in God, the creative force that sustains and nurtures humanity in ways beyond our understanding. We believe that Jesus of Nazareth embodied the power of this force; extraordinarily able to grasp its meaning, he revealed …

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The Body Politic of God, Part I

The last book of the Bible, that bizarre and nightmarish Book of Revelation, is often found to be most popular among those religious nut jobs who are constantly interpreting the universal themes found in the battle of good and evil as signs of some certain apocalyptic end time; and differentiating the tribes of those who will be saved from those who will be lost, left behind and damned. However, given the obvious fact such end-time predictions have been re-scheduled over and over again for nearly two thousand years (so far), we might better consider those recurrent, universal themes to be found in this allegorical tale; and look with fresh eyes and see Revelation as more about this world of ours that continues to self-implode upon itself over and over again. How might we be open to being encountered in another, revelatory view of the polis in which we all inextricably dwell? This commentary begins a two-part reflection, based on Elaine Pagel’s newest book, Revelations: Visions, Prophecy & Politics in the Book of Revelation; and in light of the latest terrorist attacks, bombings and global violence among our tribal warring factions. You can find the latest commentary here.

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Dreaming of a Post-Credal Christianity

One of the problems of being a professional academic is that generally when you have to write articles they have to be heavy, well-researched pieces that connect with the on-going academic debate in one’s field. Well I don’t really want to do that here. In this short piece I want to try and dream a little, to set out some ways of how we might imagine religious faith that represent an alternative to credal forms of Christianity.

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The Fourth Gospel: Tales of a Jewish Mystic- A Book Review

Review by Fred Plumer

I must admit, however, that I am truly excited about recommending John Shelby Spong’s newest book, The Fourth Gospel: Tales of a Jewish Mystic. At times this book feels more like a detective novel than a scholarly work. Spong starts with his desire to figure out how the unusual book came to be, who was the author and why was it written. Like a who done it mystery, it is almost impossible not to be drawn into his investigation as he sorts through the clues.

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A Joyful Path, Children’s Curriculum, Year Two, Ages 6-10, FOR IN-HOME

In A Joyful Path, Year Two, we focused on some of the main tenets of Progressive Christianity and Spirituality, giving our children the foundation they need to understand the basics of this path, to clarify their own personal beliefs and be able to discuss those with others, while at the same time showing what it means to walk the path of Jesus in today’s world.

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A Joyful Path, Children’s Curriculum, Year Two, Ages 6-10, For SINGLE CLASSROOM GROUPS

In A Joyful Path, Year Two, we focused on some of the main tenets of Progressive Christianity and Spirituality, giving our children the foundation they need to understand the basics of this path, to clarify their own personal beliefs and be able to discuss those with others, while at the same time showing what it means to walk the path of Jesus in today’s world.

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