On Wednesday, January 22 we wrapped up our Questioning the Bible series with a Q&A hosted by Greg Boyd and Paul Eddy. In addition to the two-part sermon series, Greg and Paul go deeper in this Q&A and answer some questions about Greg’s book, Inspired Imperfection, in which the series was based.
7 thoughts on “Questioning the Bible Q&A”
Thank you WHC for making this Q&A available. We’ve thoughtfully been looking forward to it! An incredible opportunity to learn more following the series and Greg’s newest book.
Gene and Patty ( podrishners – Minnesota North)
I have two concerns:
1) Everything hinges on one verse that states ‘God breathed’. It is dangerous to build a whole doctrine on one verse of the Bible. The real issue is the reliability of the scriptures to obtain God’s plan and will for humanity and the cosmos regardless of difficulties in the text.
2) The scripture that Paul was referring to was the the Old Testament. There was no other scripture recognized at that time. So generalizing this verse to the NT is a bit of a stretch. The argument for the reliability of the OT and NT needs to be broader than focusing on one verse.
I am 72. I have a formal theological education MDiv 1982 SanFrancisco, CA. My focus as a professional Christian was Social Ministry in SF, Philadelphia
, PA and MSP in communities of urban poverty. that I no longer identify as a Christian
And I attended Woodland Hills 1995-2006ish.
My ongoing studies have led me to dismissing the 4th century creeds and I read the Bible and dismiss enough of the Evangelical reading of the Bible (WHC remains Evangelical in my understanding…Progressive though it is socially and politically).that I am no longer a Christian. The Bible…I believe Jesus lived and ministered and was crucified…but didn’t die and wasn’t resurrected.
And there are very good scholarly reasons to support my claim.
So I continue to follow the moral-ethical teachings of Jesus. But I think your presentation is flawed. 😇
The great thing about being an Atheist is that you never have to worry about a metaphysical future. The irony is that living in the present moment, is really all you ever have to look forward to. However, that can be both a blessing and a curse. But if that present reality is so full of scar tissue from the pain of our life’s journey, we often mentally construct an edifice, an intellectual barrier to protect us from the truth about ourselves and our situation. If you’re realistically at that point, or were, then I think it’s deeply important to completely throw out terms like “Evangelical” and or “Christian”, and altogether jettison and deconstruct them from your thinking and then, very slowly, reorient your mental compass to focus exclusively on the man Jesus himself. If you say that you are willing to follow the moral-ethical teachings attributed to him, then you will also be keenly aware of what he said about ‘himself’ as well, and you will not be able to so easily extradite his presence from your mind. I have a lot of ‘scholarly reasons’ not to believe as well, but I absolutely have even more seemingly irrational reasons, to have faith! “Progressive” has now become one of those much over used labels – is it a noun or a descriptive adjective; neither or both? 4th Century Creeds can become redundant for some, especially if the Patristic thought that helped to formulate them is not sincerely investigated and expunged and separated from the political intrigues of that time. The ‘Twin’ or ‘Substitution’ hypothesis is a fascinating theory but logically incoherent and incongruous with nearly everything else that is known. I have had Muslim friends in the past while living in London who followed this line of reasoning where they saw their faith in Islam, as the natural revelatory termination of Abrahamic faith. Respecting your unbelief is important but remember this; our construed and limited reference frame of understanding is not God’s, and he is not bound by ‘The Arrow of Time’ as we are. It may just be that you are in this position now and season life juncture, so that this can be revealed to you. There may be no other way (?) He’s going to respect your cognitive and philosophical autonomy, but will be relentless in reaching out to you with self-sacrificial hope.
Thank you for your comment. I have no fear for what comes following my death. Whatever may come has nothing to do with what I believe. Will happen after I die. And even a pronoun he with the word God is mildly irritating to me now. But since leaving Christian ministry, and continuing to follow a path of service for others my spirituality has grown not diminished. And when you say atheist that translates to not a theist. And that is true about me if you identify theism with the word God. And I know that may sound convoluted, but so be it. You mentioned your Muslim friend from London. I too have Muslim friends that I worked with out at the airport during a part-time job 2006 to 2008. They were Somalians. And they got to calling me Isa man because what I had in common with them was the life and ministry of Jesus who was you know they do not consider divine either. When I first left Southern Baptist ministry from an inner city, passed written in Philadelphia Pennsylvania in 1988 and returned to Minnesota after 20 years with a wife and three children, I went to work at first Baptist church downtown Saint Paul for a brief year and a half I funded what I did privately and I taught adult spiritual development, assisted a husband and wife and their three children recently moved the United States from Ukrainian and helped them to settle in to life here in the United States, which began in our church basement . And I also did hospice volunteering over at Saint Joseph’s hospital. And then for 12 years I was a chaplain with the St Paul Police Department from 1991 to 2002. Chaplaincy is far more gratifying as a Ministry to me than pastoring, or representing a particular Christian tradition and point of view. Some of the police officers I rode with in those days , as they got to know, me asked me what kind of minister I was if I didn’t have a church. And by that time I had become a county social worker in Dakota County in the area of developmental disabilities. So I told them I’m just an undercover chaplain, and they got the joke, smiled and off we went , when I first started attending Woodland Hills church around 1995 at Harding high school and later Arlington high school and then the current building I found Greg refreshing and I can’t remember the African-American guys name who lead the music and worship time but he was also very upscale, and I liked the idea of attending a church that wasn’t entirely populated by white people. And I got a kick out of Greg and I enjoyed his scholarship as I was making my move out of Christianity which I didn’t know at the time. I’m now retired and I’ve been living in Mexico on and off since 2012. My social ministry activities continue. and I spend a good deal of my time, engaging ex-pats, and American in Canadian tourists in conversation about the need of the people in our community in Zihuatanejo. I’m happy to leave the worry of converting others to a particular salvation point of view while I instead focus on issues of children’s education, healthcare, and music in the arts.
Woodland Hills Church in my experience of it has continue to be Baptist although with the “Ana” as part of its identification. And I don’t believe they’re doing any harm so good on them. Best regards to you.
‘Zihuatanejo’ – Beautiful! A colleague of mine at work was married there in the 90’s after being inspired to visit when seeing The Shawshank Redemption.
“It’s a little place on the Pacific Ocean. You know what the Mexicans say about the Pacific? They say it has no memory. That’s where I want to live the rest of my life. A warm place with no memory.” – Andy Dufresne
What an amazing line from an amazing film.
Gracias. My first visit to ZI was January 2006. I had resigned my job with Dakota County in previous October after 13 years. I was 55 years old and in need of a new adventure. And I knew that I wanted to retire to Mexico, and that wouldn’t happen until 2012. but in January 2006, when we landed the SunCountryAirlines plane on a $99 round-trip ticket and I was able to get off the back of the plane and walk on the tarmac into the customs building. I already knew it was gonna be special. So the taxis were lined up outside of the terminal and they started to hustle me. But I had learned about the hustle when I was 18 years old and living in the Philippines during my first tour of duty in the United States Navy, 1969. And I was traveling late, so I just walked off of the airport property , and as I got to the electronic gate pick up truck was pulling out of the parking lot and had to slow down. So I looked at them. We had another guy in the front seat and I pointed to the back of the truck and then out of their head yes and often the town I went I had no idea how far it would be but I traveled other places in Mexico over the years so I wasn’t sweating finding my way. That’s about it 12 miles into town and as they came into downtown, they slow down, look through the back window , let me know it’s time for me to get out. I didn’t have a reservation for anywhere to stay, so I just started walking around a little bit then lo and behold I came across it bar owned by an ex pat Canadian called Zorros. He had a sign on the wall outside the bar that said established 2004. And it was all open air so I walked in and the owner of the bar said “hi how are you doing’s first time here in Zihuatanejo?” . And I told him yes he said let me buy you a beer.” I knew I was home.