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Wayseer

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Wayseer last won the day on July 1 2013

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  1. Paul's posts make sense - we cannot use a text written two + millennia ago as applicable for the 21st century. Sure, there is human wisdom in the biblical texts which continue over time, but most of it was written for the situation of the times. None of the authors could have possibly imagined that in 2013 humans would land a automatic robot on Mars and send back pictures and reports that I can access via something called a computer.
  2. Eric - you are free to make your own call - you have always been free to make your own call. Freedom is really hard to accept. What you believe does not concern me - what you do, does.
  3. I come into the thread rather late and I have not read every single post so forgive me if I repeat what has been already said. My own studies convince me that Jesus did not die for our sins. Sins do not need a death to fix up - they can be readily forgiven as Jesus demonstrates any number of times throughout the gospels. So the Father did not kill his only Son for something which can easily be corrected any time anyone asks to be forgiven. Further, the reason Jesus did not die in some bizarre ritualist sacrifice because of something someone (Adam) did way back when is because on careful reading of the Genesis account Adam did not sin, the serpent did not lie and Adam and Eve were not punished - they were protected. The only problem with gaining knowledge is the danger that humans might become Gods and thereby live forever. And if we did that we would never let our kids grow up. But there is a far more insidious aspect here - the claim that the Genesis story is historical fact. It's not, it's a story. Therefore confusing the death of Jesus, a real historical event, with a imaginative story does not make rational, or theological sense. In accepting what the Church tells us (Jesus made no such claim) we are effectively trying to convince ourselves that apples and snowflakes are the same things. We do not need 'salvation' from something that never happened. Mark finishes his account at 16:8 - no mention of salvation. The story in Luke 1 & 2 is just that - a story. Matthew is silent on the matter of salvation. There is no evidence in the gospels that Jesus intended to die to fix up Adams 'sin' and somehow rescue humanity. I know this sounds heretical - so be it. The theistic God of the Bible is dead. People do bad things because they choose inevitable to do so not because of something called 'original sin'.
  4. As Gardener quite correctly notes John should not have been included in the canon - it is far too gnostic and can have only been included for its many reference to Jesus as the Son of God - rather convenient. It must likewise be also remembered that John was written near the turn of the 1st century, some seventy years after Jesus and much theological thinking had flowed under the nascent Christian communities.
  5. Much depends on how one defines 'gospel'. Anyone interested in searching out the gospels should consult The Complete Gospels by the Jesus Seminar (Scholars Version).
  6. This is going to be a painful post - painful in all the right ways, but painfully never the less. I guess, looking backward over my life, I have been a spiritual progressive - living on the edge has become almost second nature. God, in whatever way such an entity might be conceived, has never been confined to the Church - either as four walls or as institution. God has always been dynamic - moving and urging me - a spiritual presence even when circumstances exist where such 'presence' is questioned. He/she/it has always been there - even in the absence - especially in the absence. Jesus knew this presence in absence and it takes some courage to stand in the abyss. Not, I hasten to add, that I am some paragon of courage. Rather, sometimes its a matter of 'crash, or crash through'. I'm in a 'crash through' phase now. The Anglican church I have been attending has been badly led. It is dying both physically and spiritually. I have persisted with attendance more out of some inverted sense of loyalty rather than anything else. I have talked myself into believing God somehow wanted me there. But I sorry God I just cannot play the pretend game any longer - I cannot pretend all your church has to offer me is Sunday School theology. You have led me this far and I know getting dumber is not part of your comic plan. I have been avoiding calling myself anything like a Progressive Christian - I am not sure the term is effectively an oxymoron. Yet, it is plain to see I just don't fit the mould my church asks me to squeeze into. I am aware than many, not all, by most, step around me. It seems that whenever I open my mount I cannot help but be 'progressive'. And being silent is not a habit I have developed. So, I am to move. To where I do not know but I cannot play the pretend game any longer. I cannot pretend that my church has more important things to say than does Professor Brian Cox. Ignoring things like the Higgs boson, the probability of life on Mars and dark matter does not make the elephant disappear. Ignorance may be bliss but it is also embarrassing. Progressive Christianity, as far as I understand the term, designates the spiritual adventurers. They are willing to take the risk - to accept the uncertainty - to feel their way. PC is a way where there is no way - a path than only opens when one begins the journey. It is an acceptance that one does not know but to stand still is spiritual death. So I will leaving those who refuse to move beyond their Sunday School theology. This saddens me. Silently I am screaming inside - it's so simply - just take one step I urge. But nothing is heard inside a vacuum. Resistance is futile as they are locked into their lifestyle and anything that might upset the regime is an unwelcome intrusion. So PC is also something else - a recognition that second best is not good enough - that pandering to the lowest common denominator is not a spiritual path but terminal. I will miss them and I will pray for them but I know their minds have been made up and the night is closing in.
  7. I have to disagree. For one thing ObL never practiced genocide. He did not start a World War and he certainly has not been responsible for the deaths as was Hitler.
  8. I can agree with what you say here. I think exploring different ways to express spirituality is what is happening.
  9. I think you rely too much on Paul in order to form the basis of your argument. That is not to suggest that the Gospel authors did not incorporate the eschaton into their respective narratives. But reading those narratives one can sense the change taking place - that there was some need to put into place something of a structure that might be called the Church. There also another more pressing theological matter which you fall into with your argument and that is the dualist nature of our existence. There is, inherently, within your argument a premise that says the human body, and therefore the environment, is inherently 'bad' - and that the soul is somehow held captive to the body. If you pursue this matter then Jesus could not have been 'fully human' and if he was not 'fully human' then his death means nothing. The end result is the position taken by the 'Deer Hunting for Jesus' mob who await the eschaton and 'who cares what happens to the earth in the meantime'. But even if we agree with your thesis - what does that mean? The reality is that after 2000 odd years the eschaton has not arrived and it might never happen. In other words, in what way does it matter if the early followers of Jesus thought it all would be over within their lifetime?
  10. Does anyone know the website where I can cancel my subscription to JSS Newsletter.
  11. Sounds to me like you are linking and not cut and pasting to a document format.
  12. I'm much in the same boat. Spong is not criticizing the US culture - he is criticizing the inequity in power distribution that favours certain groups of people over others who are minorities and have little access to power. In this he is doing nothing more than what Jesus would have done. Spong is doing what the Church has consistently failed to do and in that I fully support him.
  13. One thing about the web it is pretty egalitarian - once your posted to it your post belongs to everyone. I don't get the impression that the old site host is utilizing the posts for their own benefit. America being America, I'm sure you can generate a legal battle that will last for years and cost millions. But if the material is purely forum posts then I see little chance, or need for retaining any such posts. The alternative position is - if this is of paramount importance to you, what action have you taken to preserve you own copy? None probably. Are you not relinquishing you own responsibility in the matter? Out of all the forums with which I engage I am sure someone can do a cut and paste of my posts to cause no end of embarrassment. But I do keep a copy of some of my posts. I guess this is one of the problems with the internet - so much generated: so little storage space.
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