When I read the lectionary passage from the Gospel of John for this week, I scratched my head. This week's text is the third of the "bread passages" in our lectionary cycle. There is a lot of bread this summer. And it's about now that many preachers and congregants start asking, "Bread, again?"
To measure the vitality of "liberal Christianity" as one might measure the robustness of a business -- in terms of number of consumers, conversions, baptism and vocations -- is to miss the point of what a church actually is.
If there are so many churches here, why does America look so unlike the Kingdom of God? Why are we strangers to our neighbors? Why do we have homeless poor among us? Why do sweatshops produce the majority of our goods?
While Jesus loves everybody, there is no Christian tradition of teaching God's "preferential option for the middle class." For Christians, it's still about the poorest and most vulnerable, and here is why these tax issues matter to those Jesus called "the least of these."
Whether measured by representation and votes or bullets and bombs, politics is always a struggle for power. Since Jesus taught that the last shall be first, it seems evident that if power is the goal, then as Christians we lose the moment we agree to play the game.
The Supreme Court affirmation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is a moral victory -- and a victory for sexual and reproductive health and rights. As a religious leader, I believe that access to health care is a fulfillment of the Biblical mandate to take care of all of our neighbors.
The unforgivable sin certainly hurts other people. We can influence others to reject God's work, and we can curse people who are just beginning to experience grace and freedom. But this sin's primary danger lurks in its capacity to corrupt the self.