No one wakes up one day and says, “I have decided to be a heretic.” Some may ask, along with Glinda in Wicked: “Are people born [heretics] or do they have [heresy] thrust upon them?” As I have said in my previous post, the core of what drives people to heresy is the journey to find some sort of balance to the universe where all is well for all, then no one will be left out of the riches of what God has prepared. However what drives the heresy care is ones own self, not the unchanging truth of God.
What happened for me is that I saw within myself this blackness that I did not know how to handle. Having been a Christian for so long I found myself fighting that black tar sin with growing despair. The answer that my church gave me was to work harder, to take the weekly challenge from the sermon, strive toward perfection, and eventually become sinless, and thus embody Christ on earth. What resulted is a growing infection that obscured my sin from my own eyes, because this was the only way that I could reconcile what I heard from the pulpit and what I knew to be true about myself.
A series on the mind and heart of the average Christian heretic
Just the sound of their name is enough to make your skin crawl. They carry disease and are so quiet and subtle that you may not even know you have become a victim before it is too late. They sink their teeth in and devour the life-giving nutrients from your body as the remove your blood.
Unfortunately, this is not about insects, but people who hold and teach others false doctrines. This post is written by one.
The following is the “transcript” of a conversation that I had back in November 2009 with Doug Pagitt of Solomon’s Porch in Minneapolis, MN. My responses to Pagitt are typed with links to the tweets themselves, but his are screen shots from Tweetdeck because shortly after our conversation he deleted all of his comments, so no online source exists.
@LawGrace You don’t have @jonestony on your heretics list… I wonder why 😉 (Online Source)
@pagitt I wonder why there is so much criticism… hmm… but thank you for your gracious comment. (Online Source)
@pagitt Would you mind sharing your thoughts on the authority of Scripture? Do you trust the biblical canon? (Online Source)
@pagitt I only ask because @jonestony calls it into question on his blog… calling the canon “too Pauline.” (Online Source)
A collection of anecdotes, personal stories, and film illustrations with a dash of Scripture, Drops Like Stars is the fourth publication by the rock-star preacher Rob Bell of Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The large, full-color book has very few words for its 140 pages that can be read in under 30 minutes and at $35 that comes very close to a dollar a minute. Bell’s stories represent a wide breadth of backgrounds and cultures. He tells stories featuring Native Americans, the pope, music legends, actors, and at least one story about how some people believed in ancient times.
The stated thesis of the book is an exploration of art and suffering. Through its course it becomes less about art and suffering and much more about the art of suffering. Bell begins by sharing the story of a father whose two sons had wives who were pregnant; one miscarried and one gave birth to a healthy baby. In exploring the ambivalence generated in this sort of polarizing experience, he builds momentum through story after story.