I’ve been experimenting with different subtitles for my book Mercy not Sacrificeand I’m very interested in your opinion. I think I’ve narrowed the focus to critiquing and offering suggested alternatives for the “getting saved” phenomenon that predominates evangelicalism. So my audience is going to primarily be “Blue like Jazz” type evangelicals. But I’d love to package it in such a way so that mainliners or non-believers could get something out of it. I realize the subtitle isn’t that big a deal but I’m going to keep on mulling it over until I pick one so help me by choosing one of the following or proposing your own. Continue reading
I’m about to leave on a youth retreat so I don’t have time for a full post on this, but Brian Zahnd’s Friday night and Sunday sermons from last weekend blew my mind. He is the pastor of non-denominational Word of Life Church in St. Joseph, MO and a leader in the exciting movement among evangelical churches to embrace the sacramental and spiritual practices of the ancient church. In his Friday sermon “Ring them bells,” he talks about the way that church bells used to serve as the city’s call to prayer before they became passe to churches seeking to be “relevant” and modern. The church bell is a metaphor for a public Christianity that is prayerful and prophetic rather than entrenched in worldly political power. Then in his Sunday sermon “The Mount of Beatitudes,” Zahnd talks about the Beatitudes, closing with a fascinating account of how every single beatitude is in play among those gathered around Jesus as he was being crucified. Zahnd says, “The kingdom of God will only come through little reenactments of Calvary.” I have a lot more to say but I don’t have time so go listen. Peace.