It’s a question I’ve heard many times over the years: “Do Christians really need to believe in Jesus’ resurrection?” It is, after all, a pretty difficult idea to accept. And this is not just a modern difficulty—it’s been obvious to humans for a very long time that dead people stay dead. It can also seem … Continue reading Do Christians Really Need to Believe in Jesus’ Resurrection?
It’s the first day of Lent today, that season in the church calendar that leads up to Easter. Which also means it’s the day we all get to hear what particular vice people are giving up for Lent—usually coffee, chocolate, or social media, it seems. I don’t want to sound cynical. I really don’t. There … Continue reading Giving Up Lent for Lent?
Over the past six weeks I have been preaching through 1 Corinthians 1-3. I've done narrative preaching before, but in this series that was the focus: throughout the series I told the story of Gaia, a fictional woman from first century Corinth who hears Paul's words for the first time. The story follows Gaia as … Continue reading Gaia’s Story
I have been teaching the Bible and writing about Christian theology in various ways, in a variety of settings, for over twenty years now. This has mostly been a rewarding task. I love learning new things or discovering new ways of seeing things, and I love seeing the same light bulb turn on for others. … Continue reading Why I Do Not Cease Teaching and Writing
There are at least seven passages in the Bible where God is depicted as directly permitting or endorsing slavery. Two of these are in the Law of Moses: God permitted the Israelites to take slaves from conquered peoples permanently, and the Israelites could sell themselves into slavery temporarily to pay off debts (Exod 21:2-11; Lev … Continue reading The Bible is clear: God endorses slavery.
Okay, it’s confession time: I’m an atheist. It’s true. But probably not in the way you’re thinking. Early Christians were sometimes called “atheists,” did you know that? Not because they didn’t believe in God, but because they didn’t believe in the Romans’ gods. In a world in which there were many “gods” and “lords,” for … Continue reading I’m an Atheist
I think most Christians assume that the Bible is a monolithic entity, like a seamless cloth or a fissure-free rock. We may know that there are in fact 66 books, but we view these as essentially different chapters of the same, single book. We may know that there were different human authors in different time … Continue reading “All Scripture is inspired by God” doesn’t mean “All Scripture is equally important”