We, and creation itself, actualize the possibilities of the God who sustains the world, towards becoming in the world in a fuller, more deeper way. - R.E. Slater

There is urgency in coming to see the world as a web of interrelated processes of which we are integral parts, so that all of our choices and actions have [consequential effects upon] the world around us. - Process Metaphysician Alfred North Whitehead

Kurt Gödel's Incompleteness Theorem says (i) all closed systems are unprovable within themselves and, that (ii) all open systems are rightly understood as incomplete. - R.E. Slater

The most true thing about you is what God has said to you in Christ, "You are My Beloved." - Tripp Fuller

The God among us is the God who refuses to be God without us, so great is God's Love. - Tripp Fuller

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

Our eschatological ethos is to love. To stand with those who are oppressed. To stand against those who are oppressing. It is that simple. Love is our only calling and Christian Hope. - 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) or, conversely, “I AM who I AM Becoming.”

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

To promote societal transition to sustainable ways of living and a global society founded on a shared ethical framework which includes respect and care for the community of life, ecological integrity, universal human rights, respect for diversity, economic justice, democracy, and a culture of peace. - The Earth Charter Mission Statement

Christian humanism is the belief that human freedom, individual conscience, and unencumbered rational inquiry are compatible with the practice of Christianity or even intrinsic in its doctrine. It represents a philosophical union of Christian faith and classical humanist principles. - Scott Postma

It is never wise to have a self-appointed religious institution determine a nation's moral code. The opportunities for moral compromise and failure are high; the moral codes and creeds assuredly racist, discriminatory, or subjectively and religiously defined; and the pronouncement of inhumanitarian political objectives quite predictable. - R.E. Slater

God's love must both center and define the Christian faith and all religious or human faiths seeking human and ecological balance in worlds of subtraction, harm, tragedy, and evil. - R.E. Slater

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

R.E. Slater - T-Shirts I Have Worn in Life



T-SHIRTS I HAVE WORN IN LIFE
MAY REFLECT ME OR MY HOPES


SOME CHEER FOR WILDERNESS, CLEAR AIR, CLEAN WATERS
OTHERS FOR ECOLOGICAL CIVILIZATIONS WHICH MIGHT BECOME



T's I'VE PULLED OUT OF THE CLOSET
MEAN SOMETHING MORE TO ME NOW
THAN THEY ONCE DID


SOME T's SPEAK TO ACCOMPLISHMENTS


OTHERS TO INTERESTS AND ABILITY


SOME TO A LIFE LONG PROFESSION
HELPING OTHERS HELPING THEIR CUSTOMERS
CHURCHES, SCHOOLS, AND CLIENTS


SOME T-SHIRTS ARE SIMPLY,  P-R-O-F-O-U-N-D!


SOME I HAVE NEVER WORN
AND INTEND TO NEVER WEAR, EVER


THOSE I HAVE WORN WERE EARNED


AND SHARED WITH MANY TEAMMATES
DRIVEN TO EXCEL


PERSPECTIVE IN LIFE IS KEY
SOME MORE THAN OTHERS


THANKSGIVING SHOULD BE ACKNOWLEDGED TOO:
WHETHER A WONDERLAND IN THE WINTER
OR A PARADISE IN THE SUMMER,
HOME IS ALWAYS HOME
AND LIFE IS WHAT YOU MAKE IT


SOME SHIRTS WERE HARD TO FIGURE OUT
BECAUSE SO MANY THINGS NEED MINDING


THAN THERE ARE THOSE SHIRTS
I WOULD PROUDLY WEAR
HAVING MET GOD-SENT MIRACLES
IN ALL WALKS OF LIFE


THIS SHIRT ALWAYS WAS HARD TO WEAR;
I SUSPECT OTHERS FEEL THE SAME


IN LIFE THERE ARE MANY BANNERS TO
BEAR AND WAVE; LET'S DO THESE TOGETHER


ALWAYS, ALWAYS REMEMBER:
EQUALITY IS ALWAYS GREATER THAN DIVISION;
AS IS DIVERSITY OVER MONOCULTURES


POLITICS IS ABOUT DOING THE RIGHT THING
BUT TOO MANY BELIEVE IT TO BE
A FORGOTTEN PRINCIPLE EXCISED
OVER FORGOTTEN PEOPLE


SOME T-SHIRTS JUST SPEAK TRUTH!


OTHERS TO THE EXISTENTIAL CONDITION OF MAN


NOT ENOUGH SHIRTS SHOUT THE NECESSARY,
THE NEEDED, THE MUST DO'S IN ALL THINGS


THAT IN ALL THINGS
WE ARE LOVED
AND ARE TO LOVE

IF RELIGIONS TAUGHT LOVE
WE WOULD NOT NEED RELIGION


AND WHEN I COME HOME AT NIGHT
FROM MY SEPARATE JOURNIES
I REMEMBER WHY I WORE ALL THE SHIRTS
WHICH I HAD WORN OVER A LIFETIME...

TO PREPARE THE NEXT GENERATION
TO CHOOSE THEIR SHIRTS WISELY
AND IN THE WEARING, WEAR THEM WELL.


R.E. Slater
November 24, 2021



Process vs Classic Church Theism: Cobb v Geisler, Part 4



Process vs Classic Church Theism:
Cobb v Geisler
Part 4

by R.E. Slater


Process Theology Debate:
Norman Geisler vs. John Cobb
Posted: Aug 21, 2021


De Veritate Apologetics and Philosophy

In this debate, Norman Geisler defends the position of 
classical theism against the process theology of John Cobb.

Comment: "As a former evangelic I totally understand the need for evangelicalism to claim victory in this debate. But now, as a process guy, I see all too plainly the obtuseness of Geisler's claimed victories and how he argued from his own self-referential and self-reinforcing theistic systems purposely putting words into Dr. Cobb's speech as well as into process thought itself. Words, Ideas, and Iterations that simply aren't there. Geisler was fighting for his version of God. The process people I know are fighting for a better version of God than the one the church has lately been expressing. - re slater
Pleases note: Part 2 of this video is not on YouTube video - nor could I locate it anywhere except here as linked below." - re slater

Overview: Geisler defends Evangelicalism
"Process Theism versus Classical Theism" - Click here to hear Part 1 and Part 2 of a fascinating debate from the 1980s between Norman Geisler and John Cobb on Process Thought (a.k.a. Process Theism, Process Theology, Process Cosmology, Process Philosophy) and the panentheistic God-world model of process philosopher A.N. Whitehead. John Warwick Montgomery was present at the debate and told Norm that he had just totally destroyed Process Thought.
However, as stated above, Geisler had simply barked out his own convictions without any attempt in his life to ever consider process theology as helpful or insightful. Years later we find Geisler's evangelicalism in the toilet. Instead of fighting Norm should've been listening. - re slater

 

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Earlier Posts







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The Story of the Bible 4

"Every good theology needs a great philosophy to rest upon
even as a great philosophic-theology must rest on love."

- R.E. Slater

The Process God of The Bible, Part 1

One of the things which attracted me to process theology is it's brokenness. How it shares in the suffering of others offering compassion and help to those in need. I've never have seen this with stricter religious dogmas placing beliefs over goodness and kindness.

Process theology is one of those approaches to God which sees God as loving and good in all that God did, does, or will ever do. No biblical floods which wiped out the world, no plagues upon Egypt for not worshipping Him (or Her; since I write as a man I usually use the masculine pronoun instead of feminine or neutral Other). No fiery Armageddon end to the old earth.

Why? Because it runs counter to who God is. God is Love. By this quality all other qualities of God are mitigated. When angry God's love allows perfect, loving justice, not officious divine fury. When moved to great revenge God's love makes God incapable of acting in this way as God strives to help and save.

Freewill worlds are not the kind of worlds where one might find a God controlling all outcomes. Influencing all outcomes... Sure! But indetrminant (open) freewill (relational) worlds are the kind of worlds which God's love necessarily brought forth creational freewill as part-and-parcel of God's loving Image (Imago Dei). In those undetermined, freewill worlds we have a loving God  who is present in loving actions. Each action producing its own streams of processual consequences. But  with each-and-every consequence process theology says God's love permeates all things to do the loving, kind and good thing as He can in a freewilled world besotted with sin and evil.

When the ancient world flooded as the Genesis account tells us in Noah's story it was because of quasi-regional natural events - even as we see today in places around the world being flooded out by storm and wind, fire and climate change. When the plagues descended upon Egypt such plagues resulted from natural events... one asks how, in what way, would God have sent such plagues of hardship and suffering. Can a loving God do such a thing or were these natural events complexly colliding at the same time in the same area? To myself, it sounds like God was somehow involved... but does divine activity elicit judgment if God is love. These are the kinds of questions process Christians hold back on and are much less reticent to calm evil as God sent unlike our Calvinistic brethren (of which I was one not too many years before).

What I am trying to say is that God is not, and cannot be the catch-basin for all the sin and evil done in this world. Sin and evil more likely are simple descriptors of a freewilled creation not acting in accordance to it's divine Imago-Dei nature. A nature structured towards wellbeing, not harm. God is love. God cannot harm. God would not harm. But harm does result when living in a freewilled creation. God's freewill Nature is always TO BE and CHOOSE TO BE love at all times over all other emotions, actions, and judgments.

Thus we ask the questions of good and evil? Of right and wrong? Of whether God cares or not? Whether God is present in our sufferings or not? Or whether God can do anything for us in a world of many possible evils such as the one we are presently witnessing under a cruel war waged by the Russian leader Putin claiming God is on his side to bring the world back to an Imperial form of Christiandom (which, of course, I find conveniently stated as propaganda to those poor Christians caught in a conflict nobody wants and everybody understands as a land-to-power grab).

And so, process theology approaches the subject of the problem of sin and evil (e.g., theodicy) by always reaffirming God's steady love at all times, for all people (and creation), and in all events. Process theology will not affirm a controlling, determining God moved by wrath and anger.

In process thought, God is in the life-affirming struggle found in the event of time and being itself. That all possible actualities concrease based upon their potentialities for bringing wellbeing into that event. Said in another way, God does not control creation but fills creation with divine possibility moment-to-moment to become its truer self rather than it's untrue self. To find its lack in God's Self and not in something else baser and unloving.

Summary

The very first thing I learned about process theology is that it speaks to God's love and that we, as God's followers, must learn to speak this same language that God speaks - and has spoken - to us in His holy person, Jesus Christ.

Love is the summa cum laud of the Christian faith. If the Christian faith is unloving then it does not speak for God but for it's self, it's own "rightness," it's own "truth."

One last, I may be presently persuaded that the process kind of faith I wish to follow is loving and following an Incarnation Christ, but if after all its conjectures and suppositions and speculations if it does not result in the outcome of seeing God's love more clearly across all of my past Christianized God-beliefs and doctrines, than process theology is yet another bankrupt and futile path unworthy to be tread. We follow Jesus. We do not follow an institution, religion or men. Process Theology speaks to Jesus and is learning to speak more and more about Jesus as it grows up and matures. I wish to be one of those who help speak of Jesus more clearly.


My Story, Part 2

A few years ago my wife and I built a house. Not intentionally. No, we bought an older home vacated for five or so years by the death of its widow whose husband had passed on before her. It was kept up and rented out to a family member while it lay on the market unsold over a several year period. Finally it came to us. We bought it. Were thrilled to have it. And decided to do light renovation work by replacing the electrical wiring, older, rotting plumbing lines, and masses of cardboard insulation across all attic spaces.

We began the project and were about 45 days into it when discovering one day the entire wooden foundation was warped and rotted. We were under the belief that the house sat on a poured cement foundation by the inspectors we paid to tell us about our purchase before completing its sale. At this discovery the old house soon became a money pit as hard earned savings were spent to jack the house up 16 feet into the air - including the garage - remove all the lower attached levels including the lower floor/basement, drop off all the wings, while keeping but expanding by half again the main trunk of the 34 year old home. Our purchase intentions went from a remodeling / light renovation job to major renovation within days.

It was heart breaking. The upper floors of the house had already been gutted, we were living in the lower level, and now we had to vacate in order to do a full restoration. We couldn't sell it as is (too much money lose) and couldn't remodel the first floor as it sat upon a rotting foundation. We had nowhere to go but forward into a total rebuild.

So for the next 14 months we dealt with the loss of funds, monetary outflow, taxation problems across the board, the expense of financing a large project no bank would touch, no access to builder loans, and about every headache you can imagine as the old house was stripped and became a new house from foundation to chimney.

No longer would the old house sit on failing wooden walls but on solid, 12 foot high poured cement walls. After 8-9 months of demolition and rebuilding the expanded structure, the house was jacked down and rebuilt as it was meant to be built in the tradition of a contemporary prairie-styled home. However, though the project is now done the decisions we made during four years ago continue to haunt us.  We went from a paid mortgage to a new mortgage and have done exactly backwards what the financial experts tell retirees to do. It has been a headache and one of our own making when not deciding to take a huge loss and walk away.

Now perhaps I have said too much. It is a story many others have repeated due to floods, fires, storms, civil war, famine, drought, loss of crops, loss of job, displacement, illness, death of loved ones, lawsuits, criminal indictment, drugs, drinking, addictions, mental or physiological imbalance, family problems, divorce, children with medical ailments, aged cars, broken down heating systems, etc and etc. In one way or another, if you live long enough, hardship will challenge each of us to rethink how we might respond when difficulty comes as it surely will no matter how careful you try to be.




And having been through several personal hardships more than once, none have been easy to remove or lightly travelled over. Each, in their own way, have been devastating in their own way, as I write thinking of job loss, two miscarriages, a wrecked car knocking me unconscious with blood coming off my skull, and a policeman taking me home by 9 in the morning to discover my wife in tears having lost her second child and me telling her I had finished my job and was let go an hour earlier which is why I was driving home before being plowed into by a large van illegally turning onto the road. No job. No money. No first child. No second child. And married by now six years. Only heartbreaking grief. And yes, we've been through many other difficulties spiritually, personally, and physically. Nothing has been easy in this life.

I suppose suffering and experience are our best teachers but each of us can testify to the fact that we each wish it were some other way. That life would be beautiful, carefree, with very little hardships, if none. So too with the narrative found throughout the bible. Every prophet, priest, scribe, tribal or village or clan leader, family member, shepherd, carpenter, pottery maker, home maker, king, soldier, and child has come to God during their time on this earth and have asked the kind of questions one cannot easily answer in this life.

I was raised in a religious tradition which asked these same questions and tried to help fellow believers make sense out of their lives when harm and ill befell them or on the church's membership. Our church fellowship have always, always been meaningful to us, even though I may have approached their questions with other lines of thoughts and helps than the ones being leaned into by the afflicted one or the church. Nevertheless, I also knew then - as I know now - that our Lord comes to us we are because God is big enough to guide and counsel us from our present circumstances however difficult.


Conclusion

Thinking back to my housing project, the two choices I had on day 45 was to completely demolish our newly purchased home or completely gut it and build it back to completeness from its skeleton structure which had been laid bare. I chose the latter even though the former would've been far easier and less aggressive.

Theology works this way too. When in Part 1, I shared my solitary time spent in a wilderness of devastation, doubt and uncertainty, I had two choices. Leave my Christian faith and attempt a resurrection of some sort on my own as many have done in the past. Or, I could stay with the remnants of my Christian faith, discover what those deconstructed remnants might be which I might reconstruct as new cornerstone and foundation stones, and reconstruct all that lay above and below using the latest and greatest theologies and philosophies of the time.

I've chosen the latter by first leaving Calvinism and its neo-Christian counterparts while keep what Reformed traditions I could. Then taking up Arminianism (sic, Methodism, Wesleyanism, older Baptist traditions). From Arminianism the Lord somehow guided me without outside influence or readings into open theism and at the same time relational theism.

At the time I was writing about these theologies I felt they belonged together and wrote for awhile about how open AND relational theology fit together as natural contemporary outgrowths from Arminianism. All bible based. All from the biblical pages. Next I began working on my Baptist and Reformed teachings moving towards Emergent and Progressive Christianity, and finally coming across what I was looking for. What was it? The long and short of it is rebuilding my biblical Christian faith on a better philosophic theology than the one I had inherited, had become traditionalized, and was holding Christianity back from loving and ministering as it should.

Peace, my friends. Peace.

R.E. Slater
November 12, 2021
Published March 14, 2022


Process vs Classic Church Theism: Cobb v Geisler, Part 3



Process vs Classic Church Theism:
Cobb v Geisler
Part 3

by R.E. Slater


Process Theology Debate:
Norman Geisler vs. John Cobb
Posted: Aug 21, 2021


De Veritate Apologetics and Philosophy

In this debate, Norman Geisler defends the position of 
classical theism against the process theology of John Cobb.

Comment: "As a former evangelic I totally understand the need for evangelicalism to claim victory in this debate. But now, as a process guy, I see all too plainly the obtuseness of Geisler's claimed victories and how he argued from his own self-referential and self-reinforcing theistic system putting words into Dr. Cobb's speech as well as process thought itself that aren't there. Pleases note: Part 2 is not on the youtube video nor could I locate it anywhere except here at the linked below." - R.E. Slater

Overview: Geisler defends Evangelicalism
"Process Theism versus Classical Theism" - Click here to hear Part 1 and Part 2 of a fascinating debate from the 1980s between Norman Geisler and John Cobb on Process Thought (a.k.a. Process Theism, Process Theology, Process Cosmology, Process Philosophy) and the strange, panentheistic God-world model of process philosopher A.N. Whitehead. John Warwick Montgomery was present at the debate and told Norm that he had just totally destroyed Process Thought.


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Earlier Posts




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The Story of the Bible 3

"Every good theology needs a great philosophy to rest upon
even as a great philosophic-theology must rest on love." 
- R.E. Slater

Self-referential and reinforcing theological systems usually aren't much help when seeking to study non-evangelical theological systems foreign to themselves. Usually, self-referential systems weigh their own selves down in a multitude of ways as is the case with classic theism as upheld by conservative evangelicalism. "Biblically" endorsed systems, having been established as acceptable church traditions "sanctified" by God and "approved" by the Spirit are usually difficult for theologians to peer outside their own veritable faith boxes to look at their beliefs from another vantage point. Or if they do, they must not admit to their findings lest excommunicated by the church, institution, organization, or fellowship in which they participate.

When listening to Norman Geisler I could hear my own biblical background rumbling up from under the past, warning of difference and change. Raised as a straight-laced theological mutt from an eclectic background of Baptist (GARB), Reformed (RCA), Fundamental (IFCA), and conservative evangelical traditions, my "defending" faith did its job to earnestly raise its alarms - diving deeply into the many past apologies and defenses of its separate-but-conjoining heritages to bring into mind past historical heresies, gnosticisms, and such-like-labelling, all shouting "Go no further ye who enter!"

And listening closely to Norman's words (as my tradition had taught me to listen when defending my faith) I heard him say that he had read and studied thousands of pages written by Whitehead, Whiteheadian scholars, and Process Theologians. Which, had he done so, would've sounded in his debate more like my posts here on this site than what I had heard as the outcome of his speech back forty years ago when I was yet young, nearly out of seminary, highly impressionable, very active in ministry, and yet to look at the world beyond my own faith structures, paradigms, and constructs.

Further, had I been sitting in the Claremont audience in support of Norman I would have been shouting Amen in my heart along with John Warwick Montgomery at every other word he spoke as he stood up for Jesus and the faith of true Christianity:

Philippians 1:27 ESV
Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel,

Galatians 5:1 ESV 
For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.

1 Timothy 6:12 ESV
Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

Revelation 2:4 ESV 
But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.

As good bible literatists here's 93 other verses all related to standing firm for the faith once given....

But I wasn't in the audience that day and hadn't any idea what Process Philosophy and Theology is owing to my fundamentalist background, though I was widely read, hailed from a non-Christian, normally dysfunctional home, was basically illiterate in Christianity until I went to a state university, and later learned about my faith more formally through a bible college and seminary. In all these ways and more, I was simply starting out in life learning as I could learn from those around me through books, libraries, teachers, preachers, good friends, my elders, and the community in which I worked and laboured.

Amazingly, it took until my sixth decade, at 58 years or age, until I came to process thought on my own  by the aid and grace of the Spirit even as I had come to open and relational theology  on my own (both from my studies in biblical Arminianism, sic., Wesleyanism, and away from the systematic Calvinism I was raised in. (FYI: ORT is an outcome of PT, and not the other way around). With each, I had happened to stumble into them not realising the Christian traditions each had risen from... traditions I was totally oblivious too and apparently forbidden to research (well that I was, for if I had I most likely would have never found PP&T even now).

All I know is that after many years of searching I could not find the hermeneutic I needed to helpfully interpret the bible in a better way than what I was observing in "traditional" Christianity. My senior M.Div. capstone project in seminary would be the closer I would come in achieving this goal which someday I should publish. But as good as it was, when discovering process theology I knew immediately how to fit all my past and past studies and beliefs in-and-around process thought. It brought the best out of the Christian faith and must be shared.

Unfortunately, this has not been the direction of my past faith fellowships as they struggled with emerging spirituality movements arising out of person wildernesses of worshipping a non-relational, non-immanent, transcendent God of judgment and wrath (later known as the emergent church movement). Or, could my past fellowships see the non-Christian of color, race, culture, gender, sex, etc, beyond their bible verses of judgment and condemnation. What later became known as progressive Christianity centering in on social, economic, and legal just for all persons living under the US Constitution avowing freedom, liberty and justice.

As it was, both movements have by now merged together, each taking from the other, both the inward and the outward embrace of a God who cares and loves for us in intimate ways we cannot begin to understand in our limiting religious cultures of difference forbading change. 

Hence, my former Christian fellowships have wandered off into a number of harming paths led on by the well-meaning, but wrong, Norman Geisler's and John Warwick Montgomery's of their day. Paths of violence, kingdom dominionism where church law rules over any-and-all civic laws, White Christian nationalism and white supremacy each centering on socio-political theologies of exclusion and unlove.

The church's theology seems to always, inevitably turn sour, rotting under its own institutional weight of God's law v God's grace having once again bastardized the gospel in Jesus of God's sacrificial love of service in ministrations of mercy and forgiveness. We, the church of America, having placed blinders onto our eyes, ears and hearts, cannot see the destruction we create when not allowing the Spirit of God to flow into non-Christian communities in kind and loving ways. Ways which might proffer better results than the iron sword and buckled jack boot of American capitalism led by extremist Christian beliefs.

At the last, when witnessing how the past sixty some years of Christianity has evolved since its post-WW2 days into the post-Christian era we now live in it is no wonder we are where we are when refusing the Martin Luther Kings of our communities to sup and have fellowship with us. Or turning a blind eye to street urchins living away from their abusive homes. Or school children caught up into drugs and gangs because they cannot find identity anywhere else. On every front the church needs to dig in and reclaim neighbors, not fly from them because their property values are falling or they don't wish to live in blended communities. All this is how I would describe a White evangelical theology which is better left dead then to resurrect it again.

Folks, the hermeneutic is Love. God's Love where God's Love Wins. We don't need those push-back car stickers saying "Jesus Wins" as it shows the very lesson we hear in Norman's speech. He's not listening. He's already made up his mind that the other guy is wrong. To him, Jesus Wins, not Love Wins. By splitting theological hairs and raising the difference of exclusion evangelical Christianity has made it's own bed to lie in. The bed may be quite comfortable for those having made it. But for those of us, including the Lord God Himself, we would find sleep to fly from our heads if resting upon such unloving covers and bedsprings.

Finally, the foundation can no more be Platonism, neo-Platonism, Thomism, Englightened Thought, and such like. The integral theory to place all other studies and disciplines on top of seems to be process philosophy. All other philosophies, psychologies or theologies are but mere descriptions of process' parts but not its whole.

If you wish a personal God with open future seeking the full potential of creation as it is meant to be, than a process theology built upon process philosophy is the way to go. John Cobb had it right and people like myself and Norm should've been listening and figuring out how to make it work based upon past church creeds and traditions. We haven't and it's taken people like myself many decades later to be able to see it as our church era of the modern era has give away to constructive postmodernism and post-Christian secular thought seeking a better arrangement of society than it presently is showing.

Peace,

R.E. Slater
November 24, 2021


Additional Helps

John Cobb - Whitehead's Model and Multiple Spiritualities
Feb 13, 2015


Center for Process Studies

Check out (http://www.whitehead2015.com) -- Seizing an Alternative Conference

John B. Cobb, Jr. "Whitehead's Model and Multiple Spiritualities" Center for Process Studies Seminar at Claremont School of Theology, Spring 2002.



Sep 23, 2021