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ESV: Book of Common Prayer Daily Office Lectionary

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stephen

Dan,

No. I emphatically hold to the belief that God can do whatever he wants to do, and if you believe in a literal six days, more power to you.

Just don't hold it against me that I'm an old-earther.

Dan Paden

Stephen, I started recording my thoughts on this post on my own blog a couple of days ago, for I knew that they would run to some length. Interested parties can look there for them, those not interested in my opinion--that would probably be most people--need not have them inflicted on them.

Here, I'll only ask one thing: are you one of those people who believes that I have to be a theistic evolutionist to be a true Christian? Or is the whole purpose of that last question to "poison the well," that is, is it another, not-so-subtle way of saying, "Don't bother listening to him, guys, he actually believes in six days!"?

stephen

And what's wrong with making a distinction between truth and factualness? Only our modernistic, scientific, empiricist-centered worldview really equates the two. Or are you one of those people who believes that I have to believe in a literal six-day creation to be a true "Bible-believing" Christian?

stephen

Dan,

You don't see a huge difference between what you said, and putting words on a page on the same par as the living spirit of God? Come on... you strike me as a smart guy.

So smart, in fact, that here's some Kierkegaard for you: The true follower of Christ has left law of any kind in the dust in pursuit of the living God. Like Abraham, leaving his homeland not knowing where he was going. Like Abraham being commanded to break a moral command against murder and sacrifice his son, and his BEING WILLING TO DO IT! God is greater than any law, including the Bible.

Why follow words on a page when you can follow the living God?

Keith Jones

When did fundamentalist and extremist become synonyms?

Ben H

"This was the period (actually 1910-1915) when the series of twelve small books entitled The Fundamentals was published in the United States, from which the term "fundamentalism" arose. When evangelicals were busy seeking to vindicate the fundamentals of the faith, they felt they had no time for social concerns."
John Stott-Decisive Issues Facing Christians Today

Ben H

"This was the period (actually 1910-1915) when the series of twelve small books entitled The Fundamentals was published in the United States, from which the term "fundamentalism" arose. When evangelicals were busy seeking to vindicate the fundamentals of the faith, they felt they had no time for social concerns."
John Stott-Decisive Issues Facing Christians Today

Dan Paden

Oh, good gravy. That essentially boils down to "if you believe the Bible is true, you have no faith in God."

Next thing you know, it'll be "some things are religiously true without being factually true. No, Barth already said that, didn't he? Pastor West appears to be joining the party a little bit late.

stephen

I agree with CGMOM. Fundamentalists, if anything, have exalted the Bible, placing it on an equal level (if not a greater one) with Christ himself. If "fundamentalism" is adhering to the "fundamentals" of Christianity, the Bible is the only way to know if one is in or out of the club. Think of the song "Jesus loves me." How do we know Jesus loves us? Not because we know him and have experienced his love, but because "the Bible tells me so."

Robb

What is interesting to me about the check list is how fundamentalism can't be reduced to what we generally think of as protestant fundamentalism (with a "conservative" slant). It really embraces how there exists a multiplicity of funadmentalisms across the idealogical spectrum, thus making John Crossan or Marcus Borg every bit a fundamentalist as Jerry Falwell.

Nice post.

CGMOM

Hmmm ... good blog the only thing I struggle with is the statement of "reducing the Bible to a historical document". Seems to me fundamentals in any religion hold their Bible, Koran, etc. as much more than a historical document. They view them in extremely sacred and literal ways. They blindly check their brain and heart on the shelf and if they see it in scripture (of course their understanding of what they see) then that is the way it is, even if it seems to conflict with the heart of Christ, or whoever.

Damien Scott

In her book, History of God, Karen Armstrong makes the intriguing remark that fundamentalism (and she is speaking of the three Western monotheistic traditions) is a backing away from God. My Partner, raised as a Jew and more recently a Catholic, says that it is a form of idolatry. John of the Cross would probably consider it one of the "spiritual [apparent] goods" that lead us astray as surely as disordered desire for material goods.

Christian fundamentalism, of course, historically did draw its name from what it considered the fundamental tenets of the faith, but the phenomenon of fundamentalism exists in Judaism and Islam and Hiduism where those Christian tenets are rejected. There is what I would consider a Roman Catholic version of fundamentalism that is not the same as the evangelical iteration, too, in that it can treat papal documents or other traditions in the same manner as evangelicals treat their understanding of the meaning of scripture.

The trap, of course, is precisely that we treat our understanding of the fundamentals as if that understanding is the fundamental.

Joe

Uh, I didn't know that. You would think that a fundamentalist was someone who believed in the fundamentals of Christianity, ie virgin birth, creation, death, life and resurection.

novachild

I couldn't put it beter myself. It's amazing where good insight can come from.

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