Showing posts from 2014

A Checklist

So, this morning I've been thinking about my own relationship to the Christian Church. The Church, as I've written about in recent posts, now has a split personality, mimicking the political divide. Across the board people are siding with a left-leaning, spiritual Church or a right-leaning dogmatic Church. Let's create a list and see what side we come down on.

Evolution/Creationism. I definitely come down on the side of Francis Collins and John Polkinghorne.  Fossil evidence is clear, having established intermediate stages in multiple species (whales, for one). There is nothing that states (except an extremely literal reading of Genesis) that God does not act through evolution, nor that the universe did not begin as a singularity. Far from it, Let there be light! as a certain unambiguity to it.Age of the universe. See above. You have to simply eliminate science from your life to date the earth, or universe to about 5,000 years ago. The speed of light, the rate of decay for …

The New Church--After Religion

What Hans Christian Von Baeyer once said of science (Discover, March 1996) should also be applied to the church and spirituality: "Science, in other words, thrives on anomaly, inconsistency, controversy, and doubt. Certainty kills it."
Whereas certainty comes from the mind, doubt comes from the body: an experience leaves the question, What has happened? Who am I, now that this instance, this thing, has occurred? Certainty says, This is so because X is Y. It is an answer. And the answers which the old church is leaving us are proving unsatisfactory.
Perhaps the New Church should be like a ship at sea, not at port. The existing church sits at dry dock, getting its repairs done and reviewing its rules and regs: No homosexuality. Belief in transubstantiation (or not). Belief in infant baptism (or adult). The rules for Christ's divinity--all the stuff that has been worked out in creeds and so forth. The ship is painted with the colors of burdensome connotations: judgmentalism,…

The New Christianity

Although evangelical protestants like to invoke as their model the early church of the New Testament, one that consisted of small fervent congregations holding worship ceremonies in homes or wherever, it increasingly seems to be jettisoning foundational theology for simple political ideology. To wit: A political position on the topic of poverty would, to a Christian concerned chiefly with Christ's Word, attempt to square the individual's responsibility and response to the poor with the conservative position that the poor are poor due to their own lax moral compass and laziness, that is, due to the individual's faulty preparation to modern life. This hypothetical Christian would have to ask himself what would Jesus do and say on the topic? There is ample proofs for this unfortunate researcher: the New Testament shows Jesus constantly concerned with the poor. The entire Bible contains over 300 references to helping the poor and needy. Indeed this may well be the central pu…