Author Topic: Bad Religion book  (Read 743 times)

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Offline Adela

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Bad Religion book
« on: April 19, 2012, 08:13:25 AM »

A new book has been published called Bad Religion : How We Became A Nation of Heretics by Ross Douthat. 

A quote from the following article:
"The heretics I write about aren't detached completely from Christianity. Some of them identify as Christians and like the idea of identifying with Jesus. But they aren't interested in sustaining any historic Christian tradition or church apart from their own ministry.

Instead of trying to reform and strengthen institutional Christianity, they're picking through the Christian past, looking for things they like and can use, and discarding the rest"

http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2012/may/ross-douthat-bad-religion.html

Bill Bennett has a free audio download of his interview with the author:

http://media.townhall.com/townhall/bennett/RossDouthat4.17.12.mp3


Offline Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2012, 11:36:39 AM »
Thank you so much for alerting us to this article. I think this is part of a tide of convergence between Evangelicals on one side and the catholic and Orthodox Churches on the other. Did you know, for example, that two graduates of Southeastern Baptist Seminary are being encouraged to attend St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary for second master's degrees?

Offline biro

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2012, 11:45:00 AM »
I was kind of hoping it was going to be about the band...   ;)

Offline Adela

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2012, 11:47:24 AM »
Thank you so much for alerting us to this article. I think this is part of a tide of convergence between Evangelicals on one side and the catholic and Orthodox Churches on the other. Did you know, for example, that two graduates of Southeastern Baptist Seminary are being encouraged to attend St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary for second master's degrees?

No I didn't know that.....  Very interesting.   What do you consider the driving force in this?

Offline podkarpatska

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2012, 12:30:37 PM »
Interesting interview with Mr. Douthat at Huffington Post yesterday on this book:

Q: How do you define heresy?

A: Looking at Catholics, Protestants and Eastern Orthodox Christians, there is an intellectual core in the Christian faith. Sometimes that core gets blurry in various places, but you have the Nicene Creed, the belief that the Bible is the inspired word of God, that the four Gospels are the best sources of information about Jesus of Nazareth. There are a lot of religious movements and ideas that diverge from that core enough to be heretical but not to be a different religion entirely.

All of this is totally debatable, and people can look at the same landscape and disagree about who a heretic is. But the term is still quite useful in describing the reality of a country that is neither traditionally Christian nor post-Christian in any meaningful way. We are in a zone between those two things.[/b] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/18/ross-douthat-bad-religion_n_1433108.html

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2012, 03:36:08 PM »
The manifest destiny seems mildly strong in this one.
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Offline age234

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2012, 04:49:13 PM »
I read this in NPR's report on the book:

"whatever happens to the institutional churches, individual Christians can try to essentially be better Christians, and honor the complications and paradoxes and tensions of this ancient faith a little better, and not just go as quickly to the easy answer"

He raises a lot of good points, but this quote is a heresy unto itself. There is no Christian apart from the Church. This individualist heresy is what gives rise to all the others. So, while his critiques may turn back the clock to a more confessional type of Protestantism (which is better than nothing, I suppose), it does not fix the problem.

"We are saved together; we are damned alone." But it will be nigh impossible for people give up their radical individualism in their religious beliefs.

Offline KShaft

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2012, 12:57:59 AM »

Offline Adela

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2012, 01:17:52 PM »
I read this in NPR's report on the book:

"whatever happens to the institutional churches, individual Christians can try to essentially be better Christians, and honor the complications and paradoxes and tensions of this ancient faith a little better, and not just go as quickly to the easy answer"

He raises a lot of good points, but this quote is a heresy unto itself. There is no Christian apart from the Church. This individualist heresy is what gives rise to all the others. So, while his critiques may turn back the clock to a more confessional type of Protestantism (which is better than nothing, I suppose), it does not fix the problem.

"We are saved together; we are damned alone." But it will be nigh impossible for people give up their radical individualism in their religious beliefs.

Yes, I totally agree, it is best not to water down your faith.  I think, though, he is a writer for the New York Times and maybe won't risk his job by being so blunt.  Also, the audience of this book is primarily non-Orthodox.  Perhaps other non-Orthodox need to hear what he is saying, such as the message: to pass on your faith you need strong institutions and must not rely on a superstar pastor building a "parachurch".    Also, to just pick and choose from Christianity to build a psuedo-Christian religion maybe isn't such a good idea.    He certainly has a lot to ponder, such as to not tie in religion so much with a political outcome, or to a national identity.

Offline GTAsoldier

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Re: Bad Religion book
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2012, 01:28:53 PM »
to pass on your faith you need strong institutions and must not rely on a superstar pastor building a "parachurch".    Also, to just pick and choose from Christianity to build a psuedo-Christian religion maybe isn't such a good idea.

THIS....to the max.

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