Stepping Stones

Earlier I reblogged Defeating the Dragons post on why she’s still a Christian. Here are some more words from around the internet regarding Christianity that I found interesting. I guess I’ve been reading and collecting them for quite awhile. As a result, I’ve slowly been realizing that one can operate under Christianity without being exclusive, judgmental, or be required to take the Bible literally.These have all helped me feel that I can still be a universalist while following the teachings of Jesus and being inspired by the Bible.

The One About God, the Church, and Modern Religion

“I believe morality comes from the Bible for many.  I don’t think it’s the only source of morality.”

Why the Rapture Isn’t Biblical… and Why It Matters

“This world renewed is going to be our home for eternity, and we have the opportunity to reflect that future in our present. Rapture invites us to escape this world: the last thing that Jesus would have ever taught! “On earth as in heaven” is what he said, not “in heaven away from the earth!” Our world’s future is hopeful. Let’s tell that story and not the escapist narratives that many of us grew up with.”

Keeping Jesus, Letting Go of Christian Exceptionalism

“The degree to which Christianity will contribute to a more equitable and just world will depend largely, I believe, upon the degree to which Christians can let go of their exclusive claims on God and deepen their actual commitment to the way of Jesus.”

Reading Genesis 1 “Literally”

“This is why biblical literalism (in the sense stated at the beginning) fails. It fails to read Genesis 1 literally. It fails to acknowledge the ancient writer’s worldview. It tries to cram modern rationalism and modern pseudo-science into an ancient text, and in so doing, it completely ignores the sacredness of the text—its poetic beauty, its structure, its focus on the sacred week, its emphasis on God as creator and on humanity as God’s representatives, and its acknowledgment of the goodness of all creation. All of these things are communicated through a flat earth, dome sky worldview, but they transcend it.”

El Shaddai and the Gender of God

“May we let the power of God’s many names and the multiple metaphors for God expand our understanding of God beyond our comfort. Let us challenge ourselves to speak of God in new ways, in non-limiting ways, in ways that include rather than exclude.”

What is Practical Christianity?

“Christianity is not about theological purity.  It is about following what Jesus taught us and exemplified with his behaviors.  Throughout history, Christians have disagreed with each other on many different points.  The Practical Christian (TPC) does not seek to have all come to agreement on these various points, but seeks agreement on only one thing:  If you are following the teachings of others and applying the name of Jesus Christ to them, you are essentially committing fraud.  There are myriad examples of religious extremists that commit this fraud by practicing a religion of exclusivity instead of the inclusiveness of the teachings of true Christianity.”

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