Here is a link to a new blog I am starting for a small-group that I will be leading in the community right around Wellspring Anglican Church (where I both work and live in Englewood, CO). Check it out and share your thoughts!
Below is a reproduced blog post of pastor/theologian Greg Boyd on the Patriot’s Bible-it is a creatively cogent and funny response to this dangerously idolatrous Bible which mixes American nationalism with Christianity.
The Patriot’s Bible — Really?
May 8th, 2009
Have you ever seen the Saturday Night Live skit entitled “Really? With Seth and Amy”? Sometimes it’s pretty funny. I was thinking that perhaps the best way to get through my critique of The American Patriot’s Bible (henceforth Patriot’s Bible) would be to give a “Really?” type report on it.
I want to preface my “report” by saying I am certain the commentators behind the Patriot’s Bible are well intentioned, godly scholars who believe they’re doing the Kingdom (and America) a great service. Despite their noble intentions, however, I believe this Bible is, frankly, idolatrous, dangerous and profoundly damaging to the Kingdom. I feel compelled to denounce it in the strongest possible way I can. The sarcasm that follows is intended for this purpose only.
Here’s some “really?” reflections, in no particular order.
* The Lord’s statement that Moses “is faithful in all My houses” (Num. 12:7) calls for a boxed quote from Grover Cleveland about how the teachings of Christ “results in the purest patriotism…”
Really? Oddly enough, Christians for the first three centuries of the church were persecuted for being unpatriotic. They wouldn’t pledge allegiance to the emperor or fight to defend the empire. Now Jesus becomes the champion of patriotism. Really? Does this hold true for Russians, North Koreans and Iranians, or just Americans? And how on earth did we leap from a verse about God’s “houses” to the topic of patriotism in the first place? Really?
* In 2 Corinthians 10:5 Paul notes that the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but are spiritual and mighty in God for the tearing down of strongholds. This inspires the Patriot’s Bible commentators to provide the reader with a historical note about Eisenhower signing into law the clause “one Nation under God” into the Pledge of Allegiance. Eisenhower is quoted as saying this clause would help “strengthen those spiritual weapons which forever will be our countries most powerful resource in peace and war.”
Really? Do you really think Paul – who taught us to give our enemies food and water and to never retaliate (Rom. 12:14-21) – would approve of having his authority borrowed to buttress up America’s resources in war? Really? Doesn’t this verse explicitly say he’s not talking about earthly wars and that our weapons are not carnal? Oh, and by the way, the Patriot’s Bible leaves out “not carnal” in their commentary’s quote of this verse. Really? Read the rest of this entry »
Resolution D025 passed by a 2-1 margin at the General Convention of The Episcopal Church (America), which will allow homosexuals to be ordained to the episcopate and the presbyterate. This is a very American move-by that I mean that us Americans have in our DNA a anti-authoritarian, “no one is going to tell us what to do,” sort of spirit. This is a sad move as there are still many faithful, orthodox Anglicans in the TEC. I hope that they will feel welcome in transitioning to the ACNA, (the new orthodox province of N. America) if that is what they choose. Questions now abound as to how the Archbishop of Canterbury will respond and whether or not he will now recognize the ACNA as being THE faithful, orthodox body/province of N. America and grant them full standing into the Anglican communion. As one author put it, “It was the best of time, it was the worst of times.”
To read Bishop of Durham, N. T. Wrights response in The Times, go here.
Moreover, the Church of England’s General Synod will be debating entering into communion with ACNA in September. For more, go here.
I have often heard Dr. Douglas Groothuis (prof. of Philosophy at Denver Seminary) voice that one of the most prominent and dangerous problems of our generation is apathy. President of World Vision, Richard Stearns, has now written an entire book claiming the same. See the Christianity Today interview here. His book entitled THE HOLE IN OUR GOSPEL, sounds like a must-read!
It is hard to believe, but you must read this in order to believe it! This article appears to be satirical (according to Matt Kennedy). However, this position is certainly consistent with revisionist theology given the view of experience and “the leading of the Holy Spirit.” Who knows, give it a few years and this Caucus may surface in TEC…
[**In no way is this a full acount of Oden’s theological methodology. Moreover, please forgive the lack of footnotes…I have not figured out how to import those into a blog post.]
Jewish theologian Abraham Heschel states that “our concern is not how to worship in the catacombs but how to remain human in the skyscrapers.” Indeed, the setting for 21st century Christian living is different in ways unimaginable to those in the early church. However, Thomas C. Oden, theologian and long-time professor at Drew University, has spent the last few decades of his career promoting the idea (in different language) that one knows how to live (worship, think, and theologize) precisely by looking to the early church. Once a theological nomad of the landscape of contemporary theology, Oden has anchored himself into the rich traditions of the church and is on a mission to educate Evangelicals, and Christians more generally, in the ways of the consensus ecclesia catholicae. In particular, Oden has developed a particular method (or received, he might say!), called Paleo-Orthodoxy, which when combined with his Wesleyan posture and his commitment to Scripture creates a theological tour de force. In following, an attempt will be made to elucidate and evaluate his theological method. Specifically, attention will be directed towards how Oden’s biographical Sitz im Leben influenced his theological method(s) and their attendant epistemological assumptions.
From A Movement Theologian to an Ancient Theologian
To fully cover Oden’s influences one would need much more space than a few pages. This is because in the early part of his career, Oden was a “movement theologian,” one that moved with the cultural waves of faddism into whichever ideology Read the rest of this entry »
If “reformists” insist on keeping the boundaries of heresy open, however, then they must be resisted with charity. The fantasy that God is ignorant of the future is a heresy that must be rejected on scriptural grounds (“I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come”; Isa. 46:10a; cf. Job 28; Ps. 90; Rom. 8:29; Eph. 1), as it has been in the history of the exegesis of relevant passages. This issue was thoroughly discussed by patristic exegetes as early as Origen’s Against Celsus. Keeping the boundaries of faith undefined is a demonic temptation that evangelicals within the mainline have learned all too well and have been burned by all too painfully. (Thomas Oden, “The Real Reformers and the Traditionalists,” Christianity Today, Feb. 9, 1998, p. 46. emphasis added)