“The church in the last 2,000 years has felt the need to rigidly ‘defend’ narrow propositions as the only truth — ignoring that Jesus himself taught by the use of parables and of asking questions,” said the Rev. Paul J. Kottke, pastor at University Park United Methodist Church, Denver. “In order for the church to serve a healing and empowering role in the 21st century, we must let go of the arrogance that only the church speaks for God.”
So many ways to take this and thus respond. Of course the Church speaks for God, but it should learn to speak a little less. I take nearly all of my ecclesiastical theology from the Epistle to the Ephesians and I view the Church, the place of the Spirit, as the vocal piece of the Church, which is why we must be circumspect when speaking as the Church and for God. Along with being a high sacramentarian, I am a high church man as well. Doesn’t mean the Church is always correct either.
Um… not everything, especially in regards to science, Genesis 1, and other areas have been for 2,000 years so rigidly held. Rev. Kottke is simply wrong in this regard. (Plus, nothing, ever has been held for 2,000 years).
I don’t agree with the endorsement of the Clergy Letter Project. This is a letter which says that theologians should stay out of science and in my opinion, puts theologians in science. Yes, I agree, somewhat, that we have to not hinder scientific understanding by our error-filled theology. Yet, we have to provide sanctification for science through ethics and other areas.
“To ostracize a group of people as large as those that are science-minded because there are disagreements on a variety of topics is damaging to the science and faith community. To exclude those from the table who are different, or believe differently, does not seem Christlike to me. I think that the balance between the two groups can lead to better decision-making … decisions that are more research-based but ethically and morally considered as well,” she said.
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