Typical Phenomena

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An Irreducible Inevitability

"...it's not a liability of a particular belief system to have unanswered questions. That's not a reflection on the problem of Christianity -- if Christianity has unanswered questions, and I think it does. It doesn't have as many as many people think, but there are some things that I struggle with and I've talked about that here on the air. But you know that doesn't sink my faith. The fact that I struggle with problems in Christianity is not necessarily a reflection on Christianity, it's a reflection on knowledge in general." Read More


A Conspiracy of Silence? - Is the Bible Ever Wrong?

Jesus Creed writes -

"...how should Christian colleges prepare college students, especially science students, for the intellectual challenges that will surely come in graduate study and the professional world? This pastor reflected that one of his sons came home after his first term at seminary and asked why his dad had never told him, never talked about, the issues and questions he was learning at school. The answer of course, was that there are some things that a pastor simply cannot talk about in church, he dare not raise the question much less provide scholarly answers.

I contend that this conspiracy of silence does as much, perhaps more, damage than good.

First: brushing the problems, "the blue parakeet texts," under the rug means that evangelicalism cannot develop a robust and defensible view of scripture.

Second: the lumps under the rug are not really hidden. We simply all agree to pretend that we cannot see them. The OT becomes a book we avoid rather than a heritage we embrace. For 20 years I found it difficult to read the OT except in carefully selected verse sized fragments - because it simply is not what it is supposed to be. A fact that is painfully obvious, even to an educated layperson.

Third: the science, the historical study, the textual criticism, none of this is going away - ever. We have to deal with it honestly.

Fourth: it becomes a stumbling block that contributes to loss of faith for many and prevents many more from ever even considering the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

So I have two questions for pastors and others in ministry:

Is there a "conspiracy of silence," and if so is it a pastoral necessity? How should we deal with these issues in our churches?


How would you deal with an educated layperson with very real and very deep questions about the nature of the Bible?
" Read the full post


Conn on the Danger of an Acultural Propositionalization of Revelation

a time to tear down | A Time to Build Up had this posted...

"Have we propositionalized revelation into an acultural vacuum? Can our confidence in the “bearing along” work of the Spirit (2 Peter 1:21) lift the Bible up, over, and around human cultures without ever going through those cultures? What do we mean by anthropomorphism in revelation? Is this theological category ultimately a missional method of God himself? There is always the danger that the gospel truth will be lost in cultures….At the same time, is there not also the danger that cultures will be lost in the gospel truth? (Eternal Word & Changing Worlds, p. 215)"

really think about this.