Archive for July, 2017

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Are we ready for another Civil War in this country?  In this heated and divided nation it is a very real possibility.  Jesus speaks of division, his own words caused division within homes and still do to this very day.  In some sense a non violent civil war has already started.  It is our duty as children of God to bring peace and love, fight with prayer and do our best to end the hate.

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His yoke is easy and his burden is light.  Do not allow yourself to get caught up and become a greater child of hell than the ones putting you in bondage.  Society and especially the church has a market on programming.  Hell is big money and pleasing God based on what your leader says can be detrimental to your mental and physical health.  Nate takes on this issue in part 2 of the discussion.

Trying to understand the mind of a teen can be extremely difficult if not impossible.  The same is true for a teen to try to understand the mind of an adult especially a parent.  This special episode dives into this seemingly impossible paradox with a candid father and son discussion.

All of us who have been raised in the conservative Christian church then woken up from the heavy burden of theocracy and mandatory all knowing theology; rules which the teachers do not even follow, understand this journey towards freedom.  It is not always an easy way out!  We have been programmed and now it is time to be free.  Jesus said “My yoke is easy and burden is light.”

What if we could stop being Facebook bullies and instead start being kind?  What if we could actually think before we type?  What if we decided to love instead of hate?  What if we allowed God back into the Garden?  Maybe, just maybe the world would be a better place.

Who kicked who out of the garden? Did God kick out man? Or did we kick out God? Is not God here and now, in front of us and within us, above us and below us?  If so did we kick out God? Is our duty, our will to reach union with God?  We may struggle with these questions, we may struggle with the idea of having the ability to reach the divine becoming divine as the Father becoming one as Jesus prayed. “Let them be one with you as we are one.”  The final question is the same as the first. Who kicked who out of the Garden? Did you? Have we all? If so maybe it is time we let him back in.

What if anything does patriotism and church have in common?  There has been a lot of open patriotic activity within the church since the election.  Yet is this such a new phenomena? No, it isn’t we have seen it for thousands of years.  Buckle up and hold tight The Backyard Preacher Podcast is a click away!

Many of my progressive Christian friends are probably use to seeing the many articles floating around denouncing nationalism within the church and for the most part I agree. For the most part. While I am not one on 4th of July church services, there is almost a natural link between church and state regardless of the constitution. From ancient times the King or Queen ruled by divine right called “The Divine Right of Kings.” If you go back to ancient Egypt we see the Pharaoh as the god-king, the high priest of the nation as well as political ruler. It just might be in our DNA to set off firecrackers and salute our nation’s flag, all the while saying a prayer to our deity for another day of freedom.

So while within the Christian faith I think it is important not to go so far as to force feed people a religious diet. We do live in the United States in which the founding fathers had a brilliant and beautiful idea of separation of church and state, we also do not want to leave God out of the government and act like he will not enter the chambers of congress because we will not invite him in, or within the courts because we take down the ten commandments or a statue of Baphomet, as if God was so inferior and able to be stopped by our human measures.

I believe a more centrist approach is needed. I personally think much of this backlash against celebration of the state within a religious context comes from the recent election of Donald Trump. I do not support Trump, but nonetheless I will not be one of those “He is not my President” people, because he is my president as a citizen of the United States. Both sides, liberal and conservative have an opportunity to allow what is going on in today’s government to bring us together. Let this be an opportunity to get back to the basics of Christianity. Let me remind you that Christianity is not a religion of any state, but rather faith in Jesus, unlike the religions of the ancients we do not allow the state control over us. Yet we kind of compromise as Jesus said, give unto Cesar what is Cesar’s.

I believe both liberal and conservative Christians are engaged in what amounts to rebellion. Conservatives want to create a government of the church and by the church, and liberals are moving so far away from the church into the realm of Unitarianism. As a progressive Christian I am not going to sell out my faith and bash everything churches around the country do. Just as I do not want them to bash me and my progressive theology. I believe we can unite once again and agree to disagree.