Monday, April 28, 2014

nietzsche at heaven's door

Nietzsche at heaven's door. Cartoon by rob g

Philosopher Guiseppe Fornari, writing in A God Torn to Pieces: The Nietzsche Case, makes this rather shocking claim:

“In the end [Nietzsche] was much closer to Christ than many who would claim to be Christians.”

As Adam Ericksen explains in his review of Fornari's book,
Who was the Christ that Nietzsche rejected and that many Christians do not know? It’s the Christ who says from the cross, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

Nietzsche rejected Christ because he couldn’t believe in a God who offers this universal forgiveness. And the truth is that many who claim to be Christians can’t believe in that God either.

In fact, while many Christians demonize Nietzsche with their words, they actually agree with him with their actions.


A God Torn to Pieces, book cover, by Giuseppe Fornari

Read the rest of Adam's comments here.

Note: I have not read Fornari's book yet, nor can I confirm whether or not Nietzsche is in heaven.

However, I do believe that God knows us all by name, and so the man we often refer to as "Nietzsche" is a human being named Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, who is loved by God.  And I believe that God is bigger than us and our ideas (and statements) about Him, and bigger than our ideas about whom we will see in heaven when we get there....

Thursday, April 24, 2014


secular and evangelical streaking, cartoon by rob g

Russell D. Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, said in an interview (source):

"There's always a pragmatic streak in evangelicalism that negotiates away orthodoxy for cultural acceptance."

My observation:

"There's often a dogmatic streak in evangelicalism that negotiates away mercy for self righteousness."

What do you think?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

[city of god: faith in the streets, by sara miles]

city of god: faith in the streets by sara miles. book cover
city of god: faith in the streets is another fascinating book by sara miles. The book is about her experiences around Ash Wednesday, the people in her neighbourhood and church, and taking the ashes to the people in the streets.

A very good read. Not many sections which are highly quotable, other than this one where Sara quotes someone else:
As the Orthodox theologian Demetrios Constantelos points out, in a commentary upending many assumptions about evangelism: "It is the Spirit which moves where it wills, whose presence and operation is everywhere and all-encompassing. The Spirit of God may not be where one would like to see it and it may be where one refuses to see it.  Thus it is impossible to define the boundaries of God's people."
(p. 138)

Here's the official description from Amazon:
Paradise is a garden...but heaven is a city.
From the acclaimed author of Take This Bread and Jesus Freak comes a powerful new account of venturing beyond the borders of religion into the unpredictable territory of faith.

On Ash Wednesday, 2012, Sara Miles and her friends left their church buildings and carried ashes to the buzzing city streets: the crowded dollar stores, beauty shops, hospital waiting rooms, street corners and fast-food joints of her neighborhood. They marked the foreheads of neighbors and strangers, sharing blessings with waitresses and drunks, believers and doubters alike.

CITY OF GOD narrates the events of the day in vivid detail, exploring the profound implications of touching strangers with a reminder of common mortality. As the story unfolds, Sara Miles also reflects on life in her city over the last two decades, where the people of God suffer and rejoice, building community amid the grit and beauty of this urban landscape.

CITY OF GOD is a beautifully written personal narrative, rich in complex, real-life characters, and full of the "wild, funny, joyful, raucous, reverent" moments of struggle and faith that have made Miles one of the most enthralling Christian writers of our time.

Monday, April 07, 2014

jesus senyonjo

jesus senyonjo and the second coming of Christ Keep Watch Centre, cartoon by robg

That priest is the retired Rev. Disani Christopher Senyonjo, a former Anglican Bishop in Uganda.

Photo of Rev. D.C. Senyonjo, by Washington Blade / Michael KeyHis "makeshift church in the Ugandan capital of Kampala has attracted many gays who are familiar with his sympathetic views in a country where anti-gay religious fervor has encouraged public anger and violence against homosexuals."

The AP reported,
"They said I should condemn the homosexuals," he said, referring to Anglican leaders in Uganda. "I can't do that, because I was called to serve all people, including the marginalized. But they say I am inhibited until I recant. I am still a member of the Anglican church."

The religious leaders in Jesus' day wanted Him to reject sinners, avoid lepers, ignore Samaritans, denounce women caught in adultery, and more... yet He stood with the least of these. Why is this so difficult to do for those who claim to follow Jesus?

How will you trigger the Jesus sensors today?

Background info:
In December 2013, the Uganda government passed the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which criminalizes same-sex relations and provides for penalties including life imprisonment. This bill was supported by many religious leaders in Uganda and some in other parts of the world.