If we are going to foster a Quaker culture that can name racism and discrimination, and move quickly to the defence of the victim, we have to rethink our understanding of sin. White Quakers like me have to acknowledge that, however good our intentions, we will ‘naturally’ perpetuate institutional racism. We will do this unconsciously, but we are still responsible for the damage we do. Our ability to act in a non-racist way has been perverted. Without our choosing, we are sinners.
Where theology is concerned, Quakers find themselves pulled in two directions. We shy away from the idea of theology, yet we can’t stop ourselves from doing it.
This is the fourth and final part of ‘Rethinking the Liberal Quaker Jesus’, where I critique early liberal Quaker Edward Grubb’s understanding of Jesus. You can find the first part of the series here. F. Jesus the Jew When we reflect on what Jesus means to us today, we need to ask: How does Jesus … Continue reading Rethinking the Liberal Quaker Jesus 4/4
This is part three of four of ‘Rethinking the Liberal Quaker Jesus’, where I critique early liberal Quaker Edward Grubb’s understanding of Jesus. You can find the first part of the series here. D. The Cross as an example of God’s love A central question about Jesus is ‘what did Jesus’ death achieve?’ Grubb offers … Continue reading Rethinking the Liberal Quaker Jesus (3/4)
This is part two of four of ‘Rethinking the Liberal Quaker Jesus’, where I critique early liberal Quaker Edward Grubb’s understanding of Jesus. You can find the first part of the series here. B. Grubb’s use of the Bible In the previous section, I suggested that Grubb has fallen into the same trap the ‘Lives … Continue reading Rethinking the Liberal Quaker Jesus (2/4)
‘How does Jesus speak to you today?’ (Advices & Queries No.4) Who is Jesus and why does he matter? Who do Quakers in Britain say Jesus is? A more technical way of asking this is: what is a liberal Quaker Christology? In this series of four blog posts, I’ll offer some thoughts to help us … Continue reading Rethinking the Liberal Quaker Jesus (1/4)
(Disclaimer: Stephen is a personal friend, and gifted me a copy of his book, although this review is unsolicited.) Quakers in Britain are in decline, numerically speaking at least, and we don’t quite know what to do about it. Is numerical decline even a problem? We’re not sure! We don’t want to push our faith … Continue reading Book Review: ‘Seeking Paradise’ by Stephen Lingwood
‘If the future is under God’s control, why do we need to do anything in the present?’ I was recently asked a version of this question when working with a group of Quakers on hope. They were asking how to connect the need to act here and now with a confidence that, eventually, all will … Continue reading Hope in a transcendent God
Every now and again I encounter a book that gives me such a jolt it demands to be talked about. I've just finished James Cone's 'A Black Theology of Liberation', first published in 1970, and it has stirred me up. I found it both exciting and disturbing, and I need to process what I've read. … Continue reading James Cone’s ‘A Black Theology of Liberation’ and white liberal Quakerism
Living hopefully has never been more important. I say hopefully rather than optimistically. Optimism speaks to me of a bland sense that everything will be fine; an assumption that because things been alright for you in the past, things will continue to be ok; wishful thinking with no strong foundation. Hope, on the other hand, … Continue reading Living a truly hopeful story