Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Recently Published

Replica of scripture on parchment from Nazareth Village

1 Timothy 5:17-25 — Instructions for Male Elders

Lesson 14: "Verse 5:23 has stumped many readers. especially teetotalers. Why should Timothy take wine instead of only water? There are both health and religious reasons for this. City water usually flowed through lead pipes or was otherwise contaminated, so stomach problems in the ancient world were common."
A Lamb's Exodus

A Lamb’s Exodus: Overcoming Religious Fundamentalism, Sexism, Racism, Fatphobia, and Conversion Therapy

With remarkable openness about her own faults, misunderstandings, agonies, and willingness to grow, Mary Lokers has told her own story.  She reveals what life is like for a lesbian of non-binary gender who has been trapped in the legalism, judgmentalism, and terror of fundamentalist religion.
Pink and white Hollyhock flower

Behind the Scenes Theodicy: Three Stories of Why It Happened

August 2019 Poetry Selection
I. The angels stood guard like the hollyhocks
In my garden: swaying in the wind, yet
Immobile. A portal had opened, how they knew not...
Photo from Nazareth Village

1 Timothy 5:16 and Acts 9:36-43 — A “Believing Woman” with Widows?

Lesson 13: "As widows, these unattached women needed to make a living. Most likely, Tabitha had a house and enough resources to supply the tools of the trade, so the women could work together as an economic collective. That is why her death was so catastrophic for these widows, and why Peter made the effort to walk all the way to her house and pray for her resuscitation."

1 Timothy 5:3-16 — The Politics of Too Many Widows!

Lesson 12: "The author of 1 Timothy assumes that independent women with some social standing and wealth not only pose a threat to the patriarchal structure of the “household of God” but also are attracted to the heretics, who, by forbidding marriage, encourage female independence."
Bread and Wine

Passed Over

July 2019 Poetry Selection
Why should anyone die a sacrifice
when living blood flows in me
poured out and refreshed each moontide?
Ruins of Ephesus

1 Timothy 4:6-16 — Instructions for Timothy, and for Us?

Lesson 11: Timothy has been “nourished” in the faith with sound teaching (v. 6). According to Thomas Long, the Greek word for “nourished” means “to be reared by,” which implies a sense of tradition connecting the faith of those gone before and the generations still to come.
Pride Celebration

Pride Month Interviews with LGBTQ+ Clergy

"Pride is a time when I actively work to amplify the perspectives of my LGBTQ kin loudest because lack of access, lack of resources, and systemic harm still persist today."

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Every Nation, Tribe, People, and Language— Revelation 7:9-17

Lesson 15 - “In 7:9-17 the scene shifts from earth to heaven. Here, the church that has been militantly, though non-violently, confronting evil on earth is now pictured after the battle is over. John sees a multitude of people so great no one can count them. All Israelite categories are gone; this crowd is actually from “every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages” (7:9).”

Christian Feminism To You - Christian Feminist Speakers

Christian Feminism To You
Speakers Bureau

Let our speakers bring the inclusive message of Christian feminism to you. Check out our available speakers and presentations here.

2018 Gathering Reflections

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Editor's Picks

Calling God “She” — It’s Just Another Pronoun!

To linguistically portray God as a father, or God as a woman giving birth, or an eagle, or a sacred wind, all of those things put a limiting image up to represent God. And, for that matter, so do the three letters, G-O-D. All the ways we choose to refer to God are images, all are limited representations, all are potentially idolatrous symbols. But all our metaphors and ways of referring to God are not necessarily idolatrous. Only potentially.

From Kingdom to Kin-dom—and Beyond

But in the larger context of the New Testament, both “kin-dom” and “kingdom” make sense. The Apostle Paul plants small house churches, and when he writes to them, he calls them adelphoi—sisters and brothers—united in a kin-group not by blood but in a common loyalty to the Lord Jesus, over against the Lord Caesar. To these tiny outposts, Paul promises the coming victory of God over all other empires, through the return of his representative, Jesus.

How to Help a Victim of Domestic Violence

If someone is being abused, they feel responsible for the abuse. Why this logical inconsistency? Because if everything is the victim's own fault, they have the power to change it. I would advise you not to take that sense of power away, but, instead, to model what it is like to not accept responsibility for what the abuser is doing.
Sandstone Church Image Compliation

No Longer Trapped: Insights on Spiritual Abuse Recovery

Survivors of spiritual abuse can feel justifiably averse to anything having to do with God or spirituality after emerging from the war zone of spiritual abuse. However, cutting off the aspects of oneself that are yearning for healthy, edifying connection to something other than the self—the essential definition of spiritual expression—can be equaling damaging.

When Evangelicals Were Open to Differing Views on Abortion

"There was a time in the not too distant past when the majority of Protestant Christians, including those who called themselves evangelical, did not consider the point at which a fertilized ovum or developing embryo or fetus becomes a human being to be clearly defined, indisputable, and settled for all time."

Latest Book Reviews

There Is More than One Christian View on Homosexuality

"But when it comes to homosexuality, many people have the impression that there is only one religious or biblical view – only one way to consider the question of equal rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people. That view, in the minds of many, is that any and every same-sex sexual expression is sinful in the sight of God."

Biblical Interpretation: Can We Get It Right?

Lesson 1 "This new series of lessons in Reta’s Reflections will not be a book study, as earlier studies have been. Rather, it will deal with the broader issue of hermeneutics, the science of interpretation as it relates to how we understand our Scriptures. The question of how we interpret authoritative texts becomes acute when current social, economic, or political issues divide believers who look to these texts for answers."

Coming Back from Coming Out

"Coming out ruined my life. At least, that’s the way it seemed. To claim my identity as a lesbian meant sacrificing everything on the altar of my own selfishness, of my need to be “true to myself.” To come out as a 43- year- old woman meant walking away from a tolerable twenty- year marriage, leaving behind a career in church ministry, and learning to negotiate custody arrangements and a new solo life. To come out, for me, meant walking away from God."