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Posted inPsychology

Why dissenters won’t (and can’t) save Christianity or evangelicalism

Reading Time: 8 minutes Eventually, one after another, various Christians have become completely positive that they know exactly how to save their religion from utter irrelevance. A recent New York Times op-ed post represents only the most recent of the tribe’s guesses about how to do it with evangelicalism. Today, let me show you some of the previous guesses. Then, let’s check out this most recent one. And then, let’s explore why it won’t work either–and why it can’t.

Posted inCulture

Culture warriors just wrecked an old denomination

Reading Time: 7 minutes In 2012, the RCA began to break apart over homosexuality. One faction –the more mainline end — wanted inclusion. The other — the culture warriors — wanted to the denomination to be bigots-for-Jesus. That breakup completed this month, with 43 congregations full of culture warriors leaving. They’re joining a new denomination, ARC (Alliance of Reformed Churches). All this, over a culture war evangelicals lost over a decade ago!

Posted inReligion

Russell Moore Wants Authoritarianism, Just Without Scandals

Reading Time: 8 minutes I had not yet learned that authoritarianism itself precludes sincerity or faithfulness in Christianity. Individual Christians might cultivate these traits, but there is no way to have a whole group of them reliably doing the same thing. Sooner or later, a bad-faith actor gets into that group — and wrecks it, often before it’s even really gotten off the ground.

Posted inReligion

Russell Moore: Not Really a Hero

Reading Time: 8 minutes In these two letters, Moore tries very hard to portray himself as a man of deep principles and great morality: a hero in every sense of the word, fighting hard against the enemies of good in the halls of power in his denomination. Alas, his actual behavior doesn’t quite support that portrayal. Today, we’ll see how Russell Moore fits into his own self-presentation as a big damn hero.

Posted inGeneral

Gospelbound Embraces the False Myth of Persecution

Reading Time: 9 minutes Hi and welcome back! Lately, we’ve been talking about a podcast called Gospelbound. It’s a production of The Gospel Coalition, a hard-right Calvinist evangelical group online. In this particular episode of Gospelbound, two guys talk about all the awful persecution that their tribe totally faces. Except this persecution is largely a complete myth. In reality, they’re usually […]

Posted inReligion

Christian Strategies Reveal Their Disbelief in Their Own Claims

Reading Time: 9 minutes For a bit now, we’ve been looking at an evangelical podcast called Gospelbound. In the specific episode we listened to, two Christians outlined their strategies for reversing their religion’s decline. Interestingly, both strategies reveal the speakers’ distinct lack of faith in their own religious claims. Today, let’s marvel at their accidental reveal — and ask what their strategies might look like if they actually believed that anything they said about their god was true.

Posted inReligion

Gospelbound: Authoritarians Think More Control Means Less Churn

Reading Time: 10 minutes The tagline TGC created for Gospelbound claims it offers listeners “firm faith in an anxious age.” Of course, it does nothing of the sort. Instead, it offers the usual authoritarian blahblah from the most toxic elements in their entire end of Christianity. I’ve saved the most alarming of that blahblah for last: their oh-so-very Calvinist plan for churn reduction. They think more control over congregants means less churn from their churches. Today, I’ll show you what that means — and why it’s such a laughable contradiction of the supernatural claims of authoritarians.

Posted inUncategorized

An Ex-Christian Evaluates a Gospelbound Podcast

Reading Time: 7 minutes Gospelbound’s own marketing claims that it will give listeners ‘firm faith in an anxious age.’ We checked out their most recent episode, about a TGC-produced book called Before You Lose Your Faith, and we weren’t impressed. But hey, maybe they just forgot about their target audience because they were talking about their own book. So I wanted to check out what else they were telling potential doubters. Today, let’s evaluate another of their episodes — from the point of view of a Christian who desperately needs a jolt of ‘firm faith in an anxious age.’