Unsettled Christianity

Gloria Dei homo vivens – St Irenaeus
November 7th, 2014

Book Review of @Energion’s “Worshiping with Charles Darwin”

There are a few names unmentionable, at least in the positive sense, from the Christian pulpit. One of them, if not the main one of them, is Charles Darwin, the 19th century scientist many accuse of creating evolutionary science. But, there are more than a number of Christians who believe science and faith are co-habitable. This number, we hope, grows every day. And this is where the problem lies. Pastors are having a difficult time presenting science and faith together due to a lack of education on the topic or because they simply do not know how. There are plenty of books about science and faith, but only a few on how to use them together. There is one, however, incorporating them. Cornwall’s book is a book of sermons and essays.

This is a pastoral account, almost like an autobiography, of bringing forth God’s message out of the two books, Scripture and Nature. As one who has read Cornwall considerably, I am neither surprised nor let down at the amount of work in these sermons. They exist, ever etched into someone’s mind, as a real method of worshiping the Most High God by celebrating how he formed the world. The book begins with a lengthy introduction wherein Cornwall tells you of his journey from Young Earth Creationism to this robust faith presented in this volume. Many of us who have traversed the same plane will recognize the same highway pit-stops along the way. This is not a story about someone losing their faith, but one where someone finds a faith richer and fuller than he has known before.

Following this are two parts, one with sermons and the other essays. Cornwall uses these short statements to explain further the relationship between faith and science. The sermons he delivered while the essays are former blogposts, all are crafted for both the subject and the audience. What does Cornwall really do? He doesn’t destroy the Christian faith, as I imagine some of his detractors would accuse him of, but instead leads us along the way to a better, more honest faith.

English: "A Venerable Orang-outang",...

English: “A Venerable Orang-outang”, a caricature of Charles Darwin as an ape published in The Hornet, a satirical magazine Deutsch: Man sieht Darwin als Affen dargestellt, was eine Anspielung auf seine Evolutionstheorie sein soll. Seiner Meinung nach entwickelten sich die Menschen aus den Affen, was damals eine völlig neue Vorstellung war. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

To be frank, it is difficult to review sermons, although not all of the book is made up of sermons. Sermons are meant to be given rather than read. Even the poorest sermon can sound remarkable if given properly. So I will not judge them as such. Rather, when I read them I tried to see if they were accomplishing what Cornwall intended. He does the job well. The sermons are exactly what you expect from sermons — rooted in Scripture, rooted in the Christian faith, and yet applicable to the modern world. No doubt, this is going to be difficult for some to digest, but the sermons (and essays) approach the Christian as a Christian who is in need of moving forward. Yes, Cornwall declares, the Books of God are applicable, practical and compatible. I would hope, and pray, that more pastors seek to implement what Cornwall has done, else we subcumb to St. Augustine’s warning about looking like fools for following superstitions (disguised as theology). God helps us and God bless Robert Cornwall.

May 31st, 2013

Notes from the Otherside (Ep1) – The Variety of Voices in From Fear to Faith @energion

A short video on the above topic. I guess I just wanted to do something different than writing the post.

January 21st, 2013

Interview with @Energion Author, Rev. Shauna M. Hyde

I’ve had this for a bit, but just now put it together.

Shauna is pretty darn awesome, if you ask me, and you should. Anyway, there you go.

September 17th, 2012

@Energion Roundtable Question 5: Libya

Do you approve or disapprove of President Obama’s and Governor Romney’s responses to the violence in Egypt and Libya and now in other countries in the middle east?

Official Portrait of President Ronald Reagan.

Official Portrait of President Ronald Reagan. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

First, Romney’s actions were deplorable, and the more so because he refused to apologize for a clearly error-filled, not to mention poor timing, of the statement he issued. Second, Romney’s approach to foreign policy is akin to the parodies of “cowboy diplomacy” of the 1980’s. Unlike President Reagan, Romney’s foreign policy has no real rhyme or reason, save that of hurting the current President.

The President’s was a bit more dignified. I am unsure as to why, if we proclaim our Christianity and our Christian nation (hope/)statue why to seek peace and reconciliation, even to the point of humility, is not the first course? The memo from the embassy in Cairo was an important first step, and I believe, helped to ease some of the tag-along-protesters. His “flub” about Egypt not feeling too comfortable with the title of ally is important. It spurred the Egyptian protest into action, on our side.

But, the issue remains as to what now. The protests are something of a terrorist attack, spreading across the region. But, we must decide to whom are they directing their anger. While it is easy to look at the pictures of the demonstrations and see their anger as directed to the United States, it is simply not that simple. There is a great deal of anti-Western feeling in that part of the world, exasperated by issues long boiling. The President needs to take a … hands off approach … because any perceived involvement by the United States will push the idea of more Western colonialization. I think that is the one thing we haven’t yet talked about publicly. What role does the arbitrary border lines play in this?

And frankly, why are we still expending resources in an area that does not like us?

To sum, briefly, I think Romney’s is just another sign that he is a poor candidate and frankly, I find his character lacking. The President, a pragmatist, carries the duty of the office well when it comes to foreign policy, and at least in regard to initial moves to reconciliation, attempts something of a graceful hand.

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September 3rd, 2012

Energion Roundtable: Capital Gains Tax

I’m a little late to the conversation, but I wanted to get this quickly out. I’ve been thinking about the question all day, and while this may come as a confused answer, I wanted to talk my way through it.

First, a previous question inquired as to how my faith impacted my vote. That is difficult to say, because faith is such a vital part of who I am. I am a Christian, and a conservative one at that and that leads to a pretty liberal outlook on politics. I take Matthew 25 pretty serious, but I also take it serious that the character of the person is worth something as well. My conservative reading of Scripture also prevents me from engaging in jingoistic warmongering. While I am leaning to voting once more the President, how foreign policy and his catering to the business community leaves me wondering just what I am voting for. Several recent articles, and I’ve said this for a long time, indicate the President is a modern Republican from the 90’s. While I was a conservative Republican in the 90’s, I am not now. I grew up, after all, and read Scripture seriously. I will generally vote Democrat, but have voted for third party candidates before. One of the issues I face in this election cycle is that I believe a GOP controlled Senate will damage this country for generations to come. Looking forward always decides my vote.

The second question was in regards to the top three issues in the federal elections. First, I am tired of war. Second, I am tired of the retread Reaganomics. Third, I believe the GOP will take us backwards. Eventually, the mimetic desire will break and will see social unrest.

So, now… for the question of capital gains. First, I think “work” should not be taxed. No income tax. No corporation tax. I believe in a progressive flat tax. In other words, no tax on food and the bare necessities of life, at least on the Federal and higher State level. Capital gains, the tax you pay when you sell imaginary pieces of paper, seems just as imaginary, but without a flat tax, one must tax things otherwise not worth taxing. I guess I view capital gains taxes like taking a census for imaginary friends. Our economy is too tied to Wall Street (imaginary capital) and not Main Street (production). I also do not believe in double taxation, something capital gains does.

But, what about selling real estate? Or actual product. Without a flat tax, you have to secure a method of raising money, and the people who have the most taxable money are those with product to sell. We need to shift capital gains out of Wall Street, limit the money traded on Wall Street (can of worms there), and tax actual product. If we could, I would limit all capital gained from Wall Street and other stocks to refocus the money into actual production.

The President has shown a remarkable ability to bend to the rich. I doubt he would support this plan. Generally, only more conservative candidates will tend to speak about the flat tax, but it will never get down.

Do you want to submit feedback? Email Henry at Pubs@energion.com, or leaven your comments at http://energion.net (see the convo here)

And go here fore more detail about this roundtable.

Let me also add… my contributors to this blog or other friends are welcome to post here as well.

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