Thoughts of a former evangelical Christian

A Series of Coming Posts

In Christianity as Tribalism on April 7, 2010 at 3:34 pm

Over the next many months, I plan to write on the topic of Christianity as a form of tribalism.  Into this broad theme I will weave the argument that “Biblical” Christianity (Christianity that treats the Bible as its sacred authoritative text), overall and in its core beliefs, disaffirms the intrinsic dignity (i.e., value and worth in one’s original — created, if you will — and “unredeemed” state) of being human. 

Yes, one can cite multiple Bible passages that are universal in their embrace of humanity, but these passages — frankly — don’t fit in very well with the Bible’s predominant themes (e.g., original sin, divine justice, and atonement) and the Bible’s thorough dualism.

I have begun constructing a rough outline (see the Outline tab) of the topics and subtopics I plan to cover under this theme.  I plan to update and reorganize this outline from time to time.

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  1. Hi again Eric… 🙂

    Reading the few pieces I’ve read hear, and thinking about the conference call earlier today (I was on that call)…a passage from one of my journals continued to come to mind.

    I’m a bit hesitant to share it here, as it is somewhat graphic. And it may be triggering.

    Yet it depicts the soul murder and suicide that can result from the disaffirming teaching regarding the “old man nature.”

    Shame coursed through my veins; it became part of my identity. And that (at least in part if not much) through the indoctrination to save me.

    I’ll share the excerpt below. (Here is a link to the journal entry from which the excerpt is taken:
    October 31, 1982 )

    If for some reason this is an inappropriate comment here, I’ll understand.

    [excerpt]:

    The adversary starts pointing fingers at my worthlessness. Of myself I am worthless, totally. I am. Adam sinned and I got it. Of myself, all my works are worthless and dung. Of myself, I am a total asshole.

    I’m like a “roach hill” crawling with scum and roaches and rats, dirt and filth and slime. I’m like the ally ways of city ghettos with trash and piss and litter ankle high. Open garbage cans with rabid rats abide in dark corners. And you never know what will come from an abandoned building – a rapist ready to rape and screw and bite and slobber all over my body. And helplessly I allow it to happen and loathsomely begin to engage and enjoy it.

    Dirt, scum, filth, slime. That’s what the adversary points at. And he’s right, about my flesh and my old man nature. But that is his work and he can have it, if he can raise it from the dead. And he’ll point at it and I allow it to a point where I realize that he’s after the Word.

    He’s right when he points at it; that is what I am, except that it is not me anymore. I of myself am worthless, but with the work of my dear Lord I am as righteous and as bright as God. The energy in me outshines the sun.
    [end excerpt]

    Thanks for your blog!
    ~carol welch

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