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

Saturday, September 10, 2022

Christianity in Process - Part 5 - John Cobb

 









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The Kingdom of God with John Cobb
July 6, 2022 - by John Cobb [1:23 hrs]
[podcast may have a slight initial delay]

Jesus’ world like ours was heading toward self-destruction. His “world” was Israel rather than the planet. Jesus taught that God called us to enter a different world. His name for it has been translated into English as “Kingdom of God.” In this world, people would, above all, love their enemies, especially those who persecuted them. Those Jews who followed him gave up revolting against Rome and tried loving individual Romans. But most Jews did not, and Rome eventually destroyed Jerusalem and dispersed the Jewish people. Still, those who were living by love of one another and others continued to experience a different reality in which they could participate even when Israel as a political entity was destroyed. Today, some of us call the alternative to the current world order, an ecological civilization.


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CLASS NOTES BY STEVE THOMASON


Christianity in Process Session 5
with John Cobb and Tripp Fuller

by  | Aug 7, 2022 | Theology

I am currently participating in the class Christianity in Process with John Cobb and Tripp Fuller. Here are my notes from their fifth session: The Kingdom of God. They discuss how Jesus’ proclamation of the basileia tou theou was not a top-down power structure, but a divine commonwealth that offered an alternative to Empire and what the implications are for us today. Enjoy!

COMPOSITE ILLUSTRATIONS 1-6



ILLUSTRATION 1


ILLUSTRATION 2


ILLUSTRATION 3


ILLUSTRATION 4


ILLUSTRATION 5


ILLUSTRATION 6



Christianity in Process - Part 6 - John Cobb

 









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Life After Death with John Cobb
July 13, 2022 - by John Cobb [1:30 hrs]

[podcast may have a slight initial delay]

The question of life after death did not preoccupy the Jews of Jesus’ day. Most believed that a different kind of life continued. Jesus used this belief as a background for some of his parables. It was never the foreground of his teaching. We are called to live in and for the “Kingdom of God” here and now. I personally believe that there is new and different life after death. I think it is all heaven in that our relation to God will play a more direct and immediate role. However, much of it may also be more like purgatory. As C.S. Lewis points out not all of us will be ready to live intentionally in and for God and one another. 

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CLASS NOTES BY STEVE THOMASON


Christianity in Process Session 6
with John Cobb and Tripp Fuller

by  | Aug 12, 2022 | Theology

Christianity in Process - Part 4 - John Cobb











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The Human Experience - Law & Grace
with John Cobb
June 29, 2022 - by John Cobb [1:28 hrs]

[podcast may have a slight initial delay]

Often law is a human construct, and often it is to be supported and enforced. But Christians believe that the grounds for better and worse are found elsewhere, in the initial aim God gives us in each moment. We are called beyond all strictly rational arguments or considerations, moment by moment, to constitute ourselves in the way that is best for the whole. Since that is different in every situation, it is not easily understood as law. Christians are free from the law just because we are called to do far better. We can generalize and say that we are always called to love and to act in love. The gift of the initial aim is itself grace. But much of the time “sin” in the sense of “missing the mark” or “falling short.” This in no way lessens God’s love and generosity. This is grace. The grace may include calling us to face our failures if that is what we need. Grace does not free us from sinning or from responsibility for sinning. But the divine response to our falling short is to love us and keep calling.

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CLASS NOTES BY STEVE THOMASON


Christianity in Process Session 4
with John Cobb and Tripp Fuller

Here are my notes from their fourth session: The Human Experience of God – Law and Grace. They discuss the role of law in human society and how Jesus led not from law but from virtue ethics of love. Enjoy!

ILLUSTRATION 1


ILLUSTRATION 2


ILLUSTRATION 3


ILLUSTRATION 4


ILLUSTRATION 5




Christianity in Process - Part 3 - John Cobb












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Divine Relationality with John Cobb
June 22, 2022 - by John Cobb [1:21 hrs]

[podcast may have a slight initial delay]

Strangely Christian “orthodoxy” followed a particular philosophy far more than the Bible. This orthodoxy thought that what is really good is what a thing is in itself. Relations were limitations. God, they thought had none. But think for a moment what God could be before God had created anything when God was all alone by Godself. God could not love, for there was nothing to love. God could not know, for there was nothing to know, God could not cause anything, for there was no effect. Indeed, it is hard to think of God existing at all. The greater the cosmos that God influences loves, and knows, the greater is God. It seems rather obvious that a Creator who does not create anything is not much of a Creator. Sometimes people don’t notice that if they attribute all power to God, they similarly deny any power to God.


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CLASS NOTES BY STEVE THOMASON


Christianity in Process Session 3
with John Cobb and Tripp Fuller

by  | Jul 4, 2022 | Theology

I am currently participating in the class Christianity in Process with John Cobb and Tripp Fuller. Here are my notes from their third session: The Divine Relationality. They compare and contrast two dominant views of God in the West–Being Itself and Supreme Being–with the Process Theology perspective of God as every instance of creativity. Enjoy!

ILLUSTRATION 1
[click to enlarge any graphic]


ILLUSTRATION 2


ILLUSTRATION 3


ILLUSTRATION 4


ILLUSTRATION 5


ILLUSTRATION 6



Christianity in Process - Part 2 - John Cobb












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God's Incarnation in Jesus with John Cobb
June 15, 2022 - by John Cobb [1:19 hrs]

[podcast may have a slight initial delay]

God is present in every event. Quite literally, God is “incarnate” in everything; so the proclaiming that God was incarnate in Jesus is not especially exciting. We may do better to think of God’s incarnation as a special mode of presence because we do find God in Jesus in a way that we do not find God present in a tree. Whitehead locates God’s presence, especially in God’s calling. We humans, in every moment experience, along with much else a pull in a particular direction. This is the initial aim of each momentary occasion.  That is present in every momentary event. But the aim that emerges from the initial aim and a hundred other influences is called the subjective, which is what that occasion actually aims to be and along with all the other causes determines what it actually becomes. You can see that the presence of God may be largely smothered in the outcome. But occasions can choose the initial aim above all else. God then becomes determinative of what happens. We can use the term “incarnation” to refer to that situation. God’s presence is visible in the actual outcome. Finding people in whom in general we are confident that much of the time we see in their behavior the effective working of the divine presence may call forth the idea of God being truly incarnate in that person.


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CLASS NOTES BY STEVE THOMASON


Christianity in Process with John Cobb
and Tripp Fuller Session 2 Notes

by  | Jun 16, 2022 | Theology

I am currently participating in the class Christianity in Process with John Cobb and Tripp Fuller. Here are my notes from their second session. They discuss the incarnation of God in Jesus from a Process Theology perspective. Enjoy!

COMPOSITE ILLUSTRATIONS  1-3
[click to enlarge any graphic]


ILLUSTRATION 1


ILLUSTRATION 2


ILLUSTRATION 3