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I am a self proclaimed coffee addict and Executive Director of a non profit missions agency working primarily in the Mexican cities of Oaxaca, Guadalajara, and Ensenada. I've been married for over 30 years to Chelle, and we have one grown son, Joseph, a graduate of Auburn University in Alabama.

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Friday, March 04, 2011

Some Pre-Lenten Reading

Each year as we head into the Lenten season and Ash Wednesday, it seems as if for a lot of people, their hearts turn towards the spiritual side. This year I feel will be no different, so let me get ahead of the curve and share a few items that have recently come across my desk.

First up are a couple of videos. Actually it is one video broken into two parts talking about Christianity and the Mayans in Mexico. The first video starts at the Pyramid of Kukulcan [pictured above] in Chichen Itza in the Yucatan.

Taken together, the two parts give a good overview of the impact of Christianity in Mexico. If you have served with me in the past, you will want to check out both of these clips.

I apologize for just giving links, but the embed code has been disabled on both of these clips. Part 1. Part 2.

Next up is a little post titled "Is Christianity Evolving or Eroding?" If you keep up on the latest news coming out of the Christian world, you know the name Rob Bell. Well it seems that Bell, like Brian McLaren before him, has decided to ask some questions about hell. At least that is what the dust jacket for his most recent book, "Love Wins" says.

As you can imagine, that has jump started the religious discussion this Easter season. The post I've cited has collected some great posts from people on the issue.

Then we have something from one of my favorite writers, Don Miller [no relation, at least not this one!]. It is titled "When Truth is the Enemy of Truth."

Miller, like me, is one who likes to ask questions. The problem is, a lot of times, orthodoxy does not like questions. You can imagine how that plays out when it comes to religion. Check this one out, it is a good read.

Finally, from Eugene Cho, comes this little gem.

Sometimes, in our zeal as Christians, we lose sight of the fact that we are to act in love towards not just our brother, but our enemy as well. As Cho talks about contending for the Gospel. he urges us to do so without being jerks.

Good counsel for all of us I'm sure.

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Comments on "Some Pre-Lenten Reading"

 

Blogger BB-Idaho said ... (3:10 PM) : 

With the caveat that my knowledge of such things is confined to a bit of
early history, it seems, IMO, that the Christian
Church from the beginning
was obsessed with 'orthodoxy'. Certainly its history on through the ages until the Reformation, was one of
maintaining this orthodoxy.
We can only guess that such was the alternative
to religious anarchy, while recognizing that
'orthodoxy' itself has
changed over time....

 

Blogger SteveB said ... (7:02 AM) : 

Thanks for the link to my article on Rob Bell. I have posted the follow up article and would love your thoughts.

 

Blogger Tim said ... (7:27 AM) : 

Even though I am a Christian, I disagree with many arguments presented by the "churched" community. I do not believe that a non-believer is automatically condemned to Hell. This on its face is blatantly arbitrary, and so petty that a great God would never do this and I reject it out of hand. Also, having read, word for word, the entire Old Testament (in order, it took me over two years to gut my way through it) I can truthfully say that there are many many things in there that are utterly ridiculous in there. If one must defend every word in the Bible as the unvarnished truth then one is going to look awfully stupid in front of a skilled debater with knowledge of the subject matter. There are too many examples to site them all.

I believe that for Christianity to survive and thrive, it must by necessity evolve. Just as it incorporated customs such merging Christmas with the winter solstice, And Christ's resurrection with the fertility rituals of the spring equinox (Easter bunnies)and casting off of Hebrew dietary restrictions on pork and seafood. Currently, that evolution should be the ending of doctrine that being gay is a sin. This is only mentioned a couple of times in the Old Testament and is used to exclude from rather than to enlarge the body of Christ. It gives Fred Phelps and his "Church" cover to commit their horrible acts. I believe that the Universalists must win out for Christianity to survive and prosper.

And right on Eugene! Whether it be religion or politics, being a jerk while trying to get your point across does not make the other person in the conversation join your cause. At best, they agree with you to get you to shut up already!

 

Blogger BB-Idaho said ... (12:53 PM) : 

Over the last few years there has been an effort
by a few to convince the credulous that our country is moving to the left. I'm old enough to have an 'I like Ike' button and I remember conservatives before they tilted far to the right:
"Should any political party attempt to abolish Social Security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things, but their number is negligible and they are stupid." Republican President Dwight Eisenhower

 

Blogger BB-Idaho said ... (2:55 PM) : 

Ooops & embarrassed blush:
that comment was in response to Tim in the previous post 'Was President Bush Right?'

 

Blogger dmarks said ... (9:54 AM) : 

BB: Interesting that one of Ike's "Sacred cows" is a flat-out handout to business. And Social Security includes a huge element of welfare for the wealthy.

But it is true that the anger of those getting fat on the public dime is realy huge indeed, when their gravy train is threatened: look at the recent capitol protests.

They are idle rich compared to the poor, who rarely get organized into mass movements like this when policies impact them. They are too hungry, and trying to survive.

As opposed to the protesters, who are threatened from being changed from well off to slightly less well off. And the greed of these protesters threatens the efficacy of government service to the poor.

 

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