Shane Claiborne says Christians can be the biggest obstacle to knowing God

Friday, October 11, 2013

What if Jesus meant all that stuff?
Shane Claiborne, in an article written for Esquire and re-posted at Red Letter Christians, says “The more I have read the Bible and studied the life of Jesus, the more I have become convinced that Christianity spreads best not though force but through fascination. But over the past few decades our Christianity, at least here in the United States, has become less and less fascinating.”  Why?  A major reason is that what people are seeing “looks less and less like Jesus.” Claiborne says that many young people have an image of Christianity as being anti-gay, judgmental, and hypocritical and they want no part of it.  But it’s not only young people who feel that way.  So Claiborne wants people of any age or background to hear an important message he wants to share.  “I want to invite you to consider that maybe the televangelists and street preachers are wrong and that God really is love,” he writes. “Maybe the fruits of  the Spirit really are beautiful things like peace, patience, kindness, joy, love, goodness, and not the ugly things that have come to characterize religion, or politics, for that matter.”  Shane Claiborne is an author, speaker, and activist, and coauthor (with Tony Campolo) of Red Letter Revolution. He is also a founding member of The Simple Way, which is described on its website as “a web of subversive friends conspiring to spread the vision of  ‘Loving God, Loving People, and Following Jesus’ in our neighborhoods and in our world.”

Letha Dawson Scanzoni
Letha Dawson Scanzoni is an independent scholar, writer, and editor. In 1978, she and Virginia Ramey Mollenkott wrote Is the Homosexual My Neighbor?, one of the earliest books urging evangelical Christians to rethink their views on homosexuality (updated edition, 1994, HarperOne). More recently, Letha coauthored (with social psychologist David G. Myers) What God Has Joined Together: The Christian Case for Gay Marriage (HarperOne, 2005 and 2006). Another of Letha’s most well-known books is All We’re Meant to Be: Biblical Feminism for Today, coauthored with Nancy A. Hardesty (Word Books, 1974; revised edition, Abingdon, 1986; updated and expanded edition, Eerdmans, 1992).

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