How To Read The Bible

If you read the Bible and find comfort there, then I suspect you are not reading the Bible properly. Almost certainly, you have not fully understood what you are reading. The various texts that comprise the Bible were penned for a lot of different reasons: to preserve the history of a people, and to tell the stories [...]

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Of Goldfish and the Gospel

Goldfish seemed like a good idea at the time. Somehow these things always do. After all, Nathan (my almost five-year old son) could learn about responsibility and develop empathy by having to care for other creatures that would be dependent on him. And all the experts on child-rearing seemed to think it was an imperative. [...]

Demythologising Sacrifice

It is impossible to condense a complex anthropological work into a blog-sized space, even a blog-sized space that is significantly larger than blog-sized spaces are supposed to be. So if you treasure the work of René Girard, please understand that what is to follow is a very much reduced (and thus inevitably inadequate) summation of [...]

The Way of the Cross

All faith is derivative. In other words, because nobody (at least nobody I wouldn’t regard as either a fraudster or schizophrenic) has personally interacted with God, all faith is based on individual interpretations either of religious texts or of personal experience. This means that the nature of the values we believe God to espouse will [...]

Rejecting the Nashville Statement

If you move in vaguely Christian circles, or if you are part of the LGBTQ community, you have probably heard of the Nashville Statement. And if you have heard of the Nashville Statement, you almost certainly have an opinion on it. The Nashville Statement was the brainchild (I almost wrote brainlesschild, but I have reminded [...]

Forgiveness Does Not Require Repentance

If you do not follow Game of Thrones, please keep reading anyway. I promise that I will not make this post about the series, although I do want to use an incident from one of the recent episodes to illustrate a point. The show is seven seasons and a few years in, and it was [...]

Did Jesus Meet Satan in the Desert?

After I argued against the existence of Satan as a “person” in my last post, someone asked me how I would then account for Jesus’ encounter with Satan in the desert. I confess I have been at a bit of a loss as to how to structure an answer. That is not to say that [...]

A Very Brief History of Satan

The truth is that I have not spent much time incorporating the satan into my theology. So when a commentator requested last week that I explain my beliefs regarding the satan, I was a little anxious, to be honest. The request makes sense, though: if I am dismissing the notion of hell as a literal [...]

Saved From Hell

Nathan (my four-year-old son) is obsessed with snakes at the moment, so whenever we go to the library, at least two of his six books for the week are field guides to snakes. Bedtime routine lately consists of a story, followed by paging through a snake book and discussing one or two at some length. [...]

Weeping for Jerusalem

It’s been a busy few weeks, workwise. In many ways, they have been very rewarding. But the last few weeks have been disillusioning too, and I have found it very difficult to write. I feel like I am beating the same drum, over and over again. But that drum is my heartbeat at the moment, [...]