COMMENT: This doesn't sound too bad. But I wish they would leave well alone and let us go back to how we were - a broad communion that allowed people to think for themselves.



  1. I think it’s way past time we started teaching the laity the basics that the clergy get in Div School—and almost never bring up again from the pulpit if they want to keep their jobs.

    I take the Bible seriously—but having studied historical, textual, form, redaction, and other forms of Biblical criticism, I can never take it literally.

    If we DON’T teach these things, one of two negative outcomes can occur:

    1) People think Biblical literalism/fundamentalism is what is required to be Christian–and they seek to mold the world based on that flawed understanding.

    2) They find out that the things they have been taught about the Bible are not true–and abandon the faith altogether.

    If the Church is going to offer “generous boundaries for our reading,” it needs to start with being honest about what we know–and don’t know–about the Bible.


  2. Doxy
    exactly, and Clare Amos does precisely that. There’s nothing fundamentalist about her, her lectures are a real intellectual experience. If she has anything to do with it, as the article suggests, it should be ok.

  3. I don’t know the people concerned, but agree in principle with WD (and there are things I don’t say in the pulpit either!). My concern is that we may end up with a ‘simplest’ agreement that limits rather than expands thinking, and that this will be yet another cause of dissent.

  4. Well, I do that stuff in the pulpit, and I studied hard and encourage the whole congregation to engage in rigorous debate and criticism of biblical texts and all that.

    But I don’t have a notion what that first metaphor is about. (The one about our engagement with the Bible being rather like different parts of a house).

  5. That is the most painfully drawn-out metaphor I’ve seen in recent memory, is what it is. Perhaps some sort of demented rephrasing of “in my father’s house are many rooms…”?

    And “User Groups”? Ah, I love my church…