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Teachings of Jesus

How Would Jesus Read the Difficult Verses of the Qur'an?

John Barton | Posted 02.08.2016 | Religion
John Barton

Fairness toward our Muslim neighbors requires fair treatment of the Qur'an, including its difficult passages. This can be done by considering mainstream Muslim interpretations and exploring context.

Who Was Jesus?

C. Clinton Sidle | Posted 01.20.2016 | Religion
C. Clinton Sidle

Since I was a boy I have been inspired by the story of Jesus, and to this day, I still want to know who he really was. I have always felt there is something beyond what we commonly read and hear, and I want to know so that it may stir the devotion necessary to access my own wisdom.

Learn How to Make Good Decisions in 2016

David D. Ireland, Ph.D. | Posted 01.12.2016 | GPS for the Soul
David D. Ireland, Ph.D.

For decades, each new year found me ramping up a new set of resolutions. I was going to lose weight, be more patient... Then it dawned on me -- after ...

Who and What Count as Christian?

Ethan Casey | Posted 12.28.2015 | Politics
Ethan Casey

Tthe question has been forced into the public arena by Wheaton College professor Larycia Hawkins's personal decision to wear a hijab in "human solidarity" with vulnerable Muslims in America as part of her observation of Advent, and by the college's hamhanded and tone-deaf meanness in fanning the flames of the ensuing controversy.

Does It Matter If There Was Really a Star of Bethlehem?

The Conversation US | Posted 12.24.2015 | Religion
The Conversation US

This does not say that the events recounted in the nativity narratives are false. It does, however, require readers to recognize that these stories were crafted to show who Jesus was and what he lived for. In them, Jesus embodies what is truly worth aspiring to in life -- not the conventional trappings of success, but a transformative relationship with God.

People Who Go for Trump's 'Hate Your Neighbor' Posture

Andy Schmookler | Posted 12.14.2015 | Politics
Andy Schmookler

If a person has a hostile relationship with a neighbor, we don't know if the problem is with one of them, or the other, or some of both. But if someone has a hostile relationship with all his or her neighbors, would you not agree there must be something amiss with that person?

Questions for Jesus' Parables

Greg Carey | Posted 12.08.2015 | Religion
Greg Carey

Jesus' parables -- vivid short stories and comparisons like the Good Samaritan, the Prodigal Son, and the Laborers in the Vineyard -- make up the most distinctive element of his teaching.

Are We Finally Witnessing The Death Of Christianity In America?

Zack Hunt | Posted 12.08.2015 | Religion
Zack Hunt

Several months ago, a Pew Research study sparked what almost seemed like shouts of glee from those eager to declare the impending death of Christian...

A Terrorist, But Not a Christian Terrorist

John A. Tures | Posted 12.02.2015 | Religion
John A. Tures

A recent popular online column referred to Robert Lewis Dear's killing and wounding of several people at a Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood clinic as "Christian Terrorism." I agree that it is terrorism, but it is not "Christian Terrorism." Dear's actions just aren't Christian at all.

Do Words Kill? Is Political Rhetoric Inciting Christians to Violence?

BJ Gallagher | Posted 11.28.2015 | Politics
BJ Gallagher

In the aftermath of the recent shooting at Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs, it's time we examine the role of words in our politics and in our society. Those who defensively insist that their vicious verbal attacks on Planned Parenthood have nothing to do with a single gunman's massacre of innocent citizens are fooling themselves.

What the Widow's Mite Tells Us About Empowerment

V.R. Marianne Zahn | Posted 11.20.2015 | Religion
V.R. Marianne Zahn

Whether you are fortunate enough to be rich and powerful like a scribe or poor as the widow, we all depend on God's grace, and we all have received what we have through that grace and not our own deserving. Let us put our resources towards those things that lift up the lowly, that empower those with no voice, and that, with God's help, will perhaps even change history.

The Lion, the Lamb and What They Show Us About Ourselves

V.R. Marianne Zahn | Posted 08.04.2015 | Religion
V.R. Marianne Zahn

When King David slept with another man's wife, a prophet came to him and told him about a rich man stealing a poor man's pet lamb who was like a member of the family. David, outraged by the story, said the rich man had no pity and deserved to die. T

Is the Culture War Over?

Bob Burnett | Posted 07.10.2015 | Politics
Bob Burnett

Recently, New York Times columnist David Brooks lamented that conservative Christians are losing the culture war. Brooks suggested that conservative Christians shift focus and "nurture stable families." But Brooks is wrong; the culture war isn't over. Conservatives are stuck in a war they can't win.

If You Love the Duggars But Not Caitlyn Jenner, What Credit Is That to You?

Zack Hunt | Posted 06.08.2015 | Religion
Zack Hunt

We're quick to love like Jesus when the people who need that love are already one of us, but when the people who need loving are people we don't like, people we're afraid of, or people whose lives we "don't agree with," we quickly and unapologetically exchange that love for wrath.

Where's My Pile of Stones?

Zack Hunt | Posted 05.26.2015 | Religion
Zack Hunt

If we insist on continuing to equate stone-casting to simple, yet critical accountability, particularly when children are abused and neither their abusers nor those over them are held accountable, then I have just one question. Where's my pile of stones?

Would You Call Jesus 'illegal?'

Rev. Ryan M. Eller | Posted 06.24.2015 | Religion
Rev. Ryan M. Eller

As Christians, we are called to love our neighbors. The Bible tells us to welcome strangers in our land and to love them as we love ourselves. That's why the media and all Americans should immediately stop referring to our undocumented brothers and sisters as "illegal."

What Really Hurts The Church's Witness

Zack Hunt | Posted 06.16.2015 | Religion
Zack Hunt

What really hurts the Church's witness is proclaiming that all are one in Christ Jesus our Lord while working hard to pass laws that exist for the sole purpose of discrimination.

What If Nothing About You Needed Fixing?

Ingrid Peschke | Posted 06.13.2015 | Religion
Ingrid Peschke

We all have something about ourselves that we probably want to fix -- and that includes both men and women. But what a relief to discover that what we seek is right within us. Beauty, joy, light, harmony, balance are all qualities that can't be bought or created out of thin air.

The Journey of a Gay Jesus

James Brandon | Posted 02.02.2016 | Queer Voices
James Brandon

Could Jesus have been gay? This is not a new question for many theologians, and certainly not for me. I've played the central role in Terrence McNally's gay passion play Corpus Christi for the past nine years now. And with that exploration has come this beautiful yin and yang of backlash and catharsis that has transcended art and completely transformed my life as I knew it.

When It Came Time to Deny Myself

Zachary K. Pearce | Posted 05.18.2015 | Religion
Zachary K. Pearce

Indeed, I had to deny myself my earthly desires, my earthly wants, and take up the "Preaching Elder Cross" and follow Jesus, whom I had already loved, and who wished to call me to this service using the spiritual gifts he gave me.

If a Tree Falls in the Forest... Remembering Rev. Malcolm Boyd

Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson | Posted 05.04.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson

The Rev. Malcolm Boyd died last week at the age of 91. Accolades began popping up, but many do not know how Boyd shaped a generation of seekers in the 1960s to understand that unless Christianity was about justice and inclusion, it was just blowing smoke.

Mormons and 'Religious Liberty' -- Wolves in Sheep's Clothing?

Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson | Posted 04.19.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson

Sincerely held beliefs can be wrong -- even in light of core tenets of a person's faith, let alone constitutional laws. Equality before the law does not infringe on any core religious belief in any religion. All religions teach that others should be treated with kindness and respect.

Prisons in Sunny Florida

Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson | Posted 04.04.2015 | Religion
Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson

My home is in Florida and I am proud to say that just a few weeks ago, equality came to Florida in the form of legal marriages for same sex couples. But just when I thought it was safe to celebrate, I started reading about the prisons in Florida.

When Will Religious Leaders Start to Act Like Religious Leaders: Reflections on the LDS Press Conference

Sharon Groves | Posted 03.31.2015 | Religion
Sharon Groves

Perhaps rather than holding a press conference on the right for religious people to discriminate we might have one on a shared commitment to improve the health and wellbeing of all our people. Now that would be a news conference I would want to attend.

Jesus and American Sniper: A Call to Resist

Michael G. Long | Posted 02.15.2015 | Religion
Michael G. Long

That's what Hollywood would have you believe as it entices you to leave your home on Christmas Day so you catch the release of its new blockbuster about a Navy SEAL sniper who kills so-called bad people.