Shortly before his deadly rampage in Norway in July, Anders Behring Breivik posted a rambling Christian jihadist manifesto on his Facebook page. Within days, a self-professed Christian fundamentalist who blogs online claimed the mass murderer was no Christian because he “supports Darwinism and human logic, demonstrating a rationalist worldview rather than a Christian one.” Uh-oh. While I would also identify myself as some kind of “Christian,” I couldn’t resemble either of these two characters less. So what kinds of beliefs and behaviors do I accept and refute to describe my own “Christian” identity? What kind of a “Christian” am I? …read more
We have much to be excited about here at ProgressiveChristianity.org- new staff, new projects, new website, new liturgy. Here is a summer’s end update from the President.read more
I had the opportunity to do some extra reading this summer and I want to recommend three books that I found uniquely helpful and interesting. Two of these are big picture kinds of books and the other is a more scholarly but still a relatively easy read and simply fascinating.read more
Rest now Peter, the next footsteps you see will be us, carrying you in our hearts.read more
In 1907, a physician name Duncan MacDougall from Haverhill, Massachusetts, set out to not only prove the existence of the human soul, but that it had a physical presence and substance, much like the heart and lungs, flesh, bone and blood. With the use of a large scale he recorded the weight of terminally ill patients at the moment of death, and discerned a drop of ¾ of an ounce. He deduced the fleeting soul not only existed, but left the body for who knows where, weighing a mere 21 grams.
The human heart has always longed to believe little ‘ol me is made up of something more than the dust of the earth, to which all mortal flesh returns. It has been part of the stuff of religious thinking since the beginning of human thought. For all its persuasive power to drive human beings to believe what cannot be known, and behave in the most radically extreme ways sometimes, the promise of an afterlife and immortality often remains void of much critical examination.
This commentary build on the earlier article, “Moving Heaven and Hell,” which can be found in the Center’s Library.
Religion is being bombarded from every quarter—by scientists, spiritualists, agnostics, ex-believers, non-believers and even those who had never bothered with it in the first place.read more
The world has grown too small and the stakes for mankind have grown too high for any of us to engage our faithas if our understanding of God represents the only way God s presence may be known in the world.read more
A Story Poem for Proper 16, connecting the question, “Who do You Say that I am?” with Romans 12.read more
The Christianized Jesus – the turning of a radical into a conservative shadow of his former self – explains our problem of establishing and celebrating freedom fighters today.read more
In the last two centuries, theologians have been abandoning the view of divine revelation. This move has radically changed, if not actually rendered obsolete, the role once played by confessions and creeds.read more
It seems that Jesus’ body was hardly cold before his revolutionary, counter-cultural teachings were watered down and made safe for a society interested in economic survival in a controlling empire; in conforming, not transforming; in collaboration not covenant.read more
In just a few days I will head out to the Wild Goose Festival, where I will be speaking on “Contemplation as a Subversive Act.”read more
Paul’s interpretation of who Jesus was probably never crossed paths with the later gospel writers. Or, if it did, most of his theology was misunderstood.read more
I would like to share a little story. It is a story that has been told before but does not get told often enough. I am not certain that it happened this way but I know that it is true.read more
The events in the life of Jesus of Nazareth did not happen in a vacuum, nor are these events history as history is now defined.read more
You have become the most widely known person in the world. And this in spite of the fact that, as my six-year old granddaughter said a few years ago, ‘You don’t hear much about Jesus these days!’read more
Jesus fully embodied the Christ. Who and what is Christ? A woman named Anne-Marie once asked me what I believed the second coming meant. Who Christ and Jesus are is communicated in my response to Anne-Marie. “I’m …read more
Faith is not about getting our doctrines right. Nobody gets the doctrines right. It’s about doing the right things.read more