According to some Christian outlooks we were made for another world. Perhaps, rather, we were made for this world to recreate, reclaim, redeem, and renew unto God's future aspiration by the power of His Spirit. - R.E. Slater
Secularization theory has been massively falsified. We don't live in an age of secularity. We live in an age of explosive, pervasive religiosity... an age of religious pluralism. - Peter L. Berger
Exploring the edge of life and faith in a post-everything world. - Todd Littleton
I don't need another reason to believe, your love is all around for me to see. – anon
Thou art our need; and in giving us more of thyself thou givest us all. - Khalil Gibran, Prayer XXIII
Be careful what you pretend to be. You become what you pretend to be. - Kurt Vonnegut
Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are often shaped and adjusted by our social goals. - Jim Forest
People, even more than things, need to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone. – anon
Certainly God's love has made fools of us all. - R.E. Slater
An apocalyptic Christian faith doesn't wait for Jesus to come, but for Jesus to become in our midst. - R.E. Slater
Christian belief in God begins with the cross and resurrection of Jesus, not with rational apologetics. - Eberhard Jüngel, Jürgen Moltmann
Our knowledge of God is through the 'I-Thou' encounter, not in finding God at the end of a syllogism or argument. There is a grave danger in any Christian treatment of God as an object. The God of Jesus Christ and Scripture is irreducibly subject and never made as an object, a force, a power, or a principle that can be manipulated. - Emil Brunner
Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh means "I will be that who I have yet to become." - God (Ex 3.14)
Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. - Thomas Merton
The church is God's world-changing social experiment of bringing unlikes and differents to the Eucharist/Communion table to share life with one another as a new kind of family. When this happens we show to the world what love, justice, peace, reconciliation, and life together is designed by God to be. The church is God's show-and-tell for the world to see how God wants us to live as a blended, global, polypluralistic family united with one will, by one Lord, and baptized by one Spirit. – anon
The cross that is planted at the heart of the history of the world cannot be uprooted. - Jacques Ellul
The Unity in whose loving presence the universe unfolds is inside each person as a call to welcome the stranger, protect animals and the earth, respect the dignity of each person, think new thoughts, and help bring about ecological civilizations. - John Cobb & Farhan A. Shah
If you board the wrong train it is of no use running along the corridors of the train in the other direction. - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
God's justice is restorative rather than punitive; His discipline is merciful rather than punishing; His power is made perfect in weakness; and His grace is sufficient for all. – anon
Our little [biblical] systems have their day; they have their day and cease to be. They are but broken lights of Thee, and Thou, O God art more than they. - Alfred Lord Tennyson
We can’t control God; God is uncontrollable. God can’t control us; God’s love is uncontrolling! - Thomas Jay Oord
Life in perspective but always in process... as we are relational beings in process to one another so life events are in process in relation to each event... as God is to Self, is to world, is to us... like Father, like sons and daughters, like events... life in process yet always in perspective. - R.E. Slater

Friday, September 20, 2019

R.E. Slater - A Call to Social Justice




This morning I find myself mulling over this past week's thoughts, decisions and commentaries both written, unwritten and read. The complexity of life perplexes why so little progress is made locally as national and international constructs wash over us like so many destabilizing tidal waves. Many of which are unhealthy while some few are healthy. Issues such as witnessing how many forms of social unrest has taken us to those more poignant moments requiring actionable movement only to see one-and-all floundering in the wake of a strong backwash knocking us over unable to keep our footing to be pulled away from the shorelines of reason and goodwill. Which I think explains why focusing on controllable moments around us by participating in recurring life experiences are the only points of sanity we have left to us or feel empowered by.

The issues are too large, too deep, too complex, as we are discovering, leaving us with the only thing we can do which is to reorganize ourselves into larger, more cohesive regional blocks of social networks to systematically address the tidal washes of change confronting us to large scale world action. We can no longer live in our little bubbles pretending all is well. Rather, we each have obligations to fulfill in resolving societal detractors, destructive earthly practices, and the social injustices around us.

How? By counterbalancing those negatives with the good things the bible urges us to enact amongst each other and into the world beyond. Such Spirit things as peace, love, mercy, forgiveness, and unity. Our natural tendencies bespeak our fragility as a species - if not the weak mindedness bourne our humanity that we stand up to disinformation to create constructive moments of rightful actions. And yet, if we do nothing but sit and judge nothing is done.

Whether enacting better democracies or Spirit-based resolves, each requires a personal and generational duty to the larger society around us to contribute to its health and healing according to the social networks and livelihoods we each have and bear a responsibility to address regarding the weighty issues pressing in on us from all sides. Fear, isolation, and anger are the poorest constructs to build upon. Much better we respect each other, listen to one another, and build a future we might be proud. One that is good, morally strong, and vibrantly cohesive in the face of so many societal and earthly negatives.

Peace,

R.E. Slater
September 20, 2019


Amazon Link


Book Blurb

In 1934, Confessing Christians in Germany declared that support for the Nazi regime violated the basic principles of the Christian faith, thereby creating a status confesionis (confessional situation), requiring a binding doctrinal stance on sociopolitical questions. In this book, the result of a lifetime of engaged religious, philosophical, and critical inquiry, David Ray Griffin declares that with regard to American Empire, the church in America is in a similarly dire situation and must stand up for the integrity of the Gospel. He writes: “Our Christian faith at its best would lead us, both as individual Christians and as churches, to oppose the American Empire in the name of God. As long as the church does not explicitly oppose this empire, it is, by its silence, a de facto supporter.”Chapter by chapter (in some cases, verse by verse) Griffin argues that Christians in America must deal with the darker side of their country, especially its imperialism, racism, and nuclear and climate policies. With clarity and insight, Griffin points out ways in which the American Empire is similar to the Roman Empire—the empire that crucified Jesus—and urges Christians, “publicly and unequivocally” to reject it.To that end, Griffin has written a theology that aims always to keep in mind the meaning of “gospel”—good news. That is, it focuses on the primary doctrines of Christian faith, which are unqualifiedly good news, as distinct from secondary and tertiary doctrines, some of which have delivered bad—sometimes horrible—news. The primary doctrines are rooted in the Bible, especially the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. Written from the perspective of process theology, the book is “liberal in method and conservative in content.” “Liberal in method” means that all appeals to authority to establish truth are rejected. Theology, like philosophy, can argue for the truth of its doctrines only on the basis of evidence and reason. So although the reality of revelation can be affirmed, theologians cannot make claims for the truth of events or doctrines by claiming that this truth was revealed. It is “conservative in content” by virtue of employing a constructive postmodern worldview, based on the process philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead. Being “conservative in content” does not mean affirming the types of conservative theology that allow secondary and tertiary doctrines to distort the gospel’s primary doctrines. It means reaffirming primary doctrines of the Christian gospel, such as God’s creation of the world, God as actively present in us, and divinely-given life after death. American Christianity is in crisis. In this timely book, David Ray Griffin preaches the Gospel—not interpreted for the convenience of Americans, but to remind Americans of what the Gospel actually says and what it calls us to do.