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Who Are Some Christian Authors/bloggers You Still Respect?


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I think it's good even when de-converting to realize that there are some christians out there who have some good things to say. I now may have to approach them from a different perspective, but I was wondering if anyone had any christians they still respect and follow?

 

My list:

 

Rob Bell

Francis Chan

Rachel Held Evans

Benjamin Corey

Pete Rollins

Dan Kimball

 

That's all I can think of right now. Anyone else?

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Matthew Fox

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matthew_Fox_(priest)

 

 

John Shelby Spong

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Shelby_Spong

 

(From the late 60's and into the 70's, he was the pastor of a prominent Episcopal church in my area -- and let me tellya -- the fundies hated him and they were always trying to run him out of town.)

 

If all christians were like these two men, the world would be a much better place.  But I also have to say that on a certain level, these and all decent, "moderate christians", also tick me off because just like their "moderate muslim" counterparts, they enable the vile, hateful behavior of other followers of their barbaric religions.   Ok, off my soapbox.  GONZ9729CustomImage1539775.gif

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I really like(d) Phillip Yancey. I don't necessarily agree with all of what he says, but I really feel like he is trying to be genuine in his quest for answers. I probably won't read much of his stuff now, but I've read most of his books.

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I think it's good even when de-converting to realize that there are some christians out there who have some good things to say. I now may have to approach them from a different perspective, but I was wondering if anyone had any christians they still respect and follow?

 

My list:

 

Rob Bell

Francis Chan

Rachel Held Evans

Benjamin Corey

Pete Rollins

Dan Kimball

 

That's all I can think of right now. Anyone else?

My list:

 

Todd Friel

Josh McDowell

Lee Strobal

And though I say so begrudgingly, Kent Hovind (even though he's got some very strange arguments, he really seems like a friendly guy)

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I really like(d) Phillip Yancey. I don't necessarily agree with all of what he says, but I really feel like he is trying to be genuine in his quest for answers. I probably won't read much of his stuff now, but I've read most of his books.

His stuff on pain and suffering is really good.

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I can't work up any interest in people who are ultimately promoting a toxic religion.

That sounds like what Sam Harris says, which I agree at some point. However, I also think you can find beauty in just about anything if you look hard enough. I admire the above bloggers/writers for different reasons, but they all kind of boil down to that they actually live what they talk about without being judgmental; they are working hard to stem the tide of dumbassery christian thought; and they are looking at the role of religion in society with a different lens.

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...they are working hard to stem the tide of dumbassery christian thought; and they are looking at the role of religion in society with a different lens.

 

Christianity at its very core is dumbassery, at its fringes it's downright dangerous. 

 

They can imagine a different role for religion than it actually has and try to stem the tide of dumbassery all they want. Fact is, things are getting worse. Christianity is becoming more radicalized and politicized as we speak.

 

We would be better off without any of it. We can find warm fuzzy platitudes everywhere from Deepak Chopra, to Oprah, to Facebook memes. We can find wisdom in secular literature. In my opinion, Christianity is one of the problem religions plaguing the world today.

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TBH, don't know. Most of my Christian books went to the charity shop or the bookshop I work at on a semi-voluntary basis (probably the only one I want to keep is Kenneth Kitchen's On The Reliability Of The Old Testament just to see what he has to say- at least he presumably has some academic credibility), I unfollowed most of the Christian blogs on Wordpress I used to go on, etc. If someone who is Christian and happens to write from a Christian perspective happens to say something meaningful that I can get on board with, I will appreciate that, as long as I can filter out the religious implications.

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That's who I was going to mention. I don't actively seek out his writings, but I have a friend who occasionally gives me something from Spong to read. Although on the topic of "god" he comes across as a bit wishy-washy to me, when it comes to analyzing the Bible and putting it into historical context, he often has some great insights. If he would just let himself drop the religious stuff, then he'd be a force to be reckoned with.

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That's who I was going to mention. I don't actively seek out his writings, but I have a friend who occasionally gives me something from Spong to read. Although on the topic of "god" he comes across as a bit wishy-washy to me, when it comes to analyzing the Bible and putting it into historical context, he often has some great insights. If he would just let himself drop the religious stuff, then he'd be a force to be reckoned with.

 

 

Yes I agree.  It's been many, many, many years since I've bothered to keep up with him or any other christian author.  It's just not part of my life anymore.  

 

Anything worthwhile these "decent/moderate" christians have to offer can be accomplished outside of their religion anyhow, so why bother with the christinsanity. 

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I'm still a die hard fan of the ex-lead singer of Flyleaf, Lacey Sturm. Her new album Life Screams came out and I absolutely love it. Even though it has some Christian references in it, it doesn't go too far with the whole Jesus thing and I actually listen to it a lot when I meditate. I've been a fan of Flyleaf since their first album in 2005. Lacey is a really kind hearted girl who is bold about her beliefs but doesn't go around hating on others if they don't believe what she does. And her testimony on how God saved her from suicide is really inspiring.

 

I mean yeah I don't believe in the Christian god, but her story hits me hard because I've went through some shit of my own. And the fact that she found a belief that benefitted her life and drove her to create music...yeah that's pretty awesome. I'm sure I'll be a Flyleaf/Lacey fan until I die.

 

When I first deconverted in August of 2015 (it's almost my 1 year anniversary since I joined the site), I couldn't listen to Flyleaf for a while because I used to listen to it for worship. But now I have gotten over the pain of deconversion and have been living my life the way that makes me happy, I can listen to my favorite band again..and their occassional message about God doesn't bother me anymore. I'm also a big fan of Red, another Christian rock band. I've seen both Flyleaf and Red in concert and I was blown away!

 

edit:

By the way I noticed the post said Christian authors, not Christian musicians. Lacey Sturm actually wrote a book called "The Reason" and even though it was a little preachy at times, I loved reading about her story nonetheless. For her message in overcoming depression and suicide..she is one of my role models

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I'm still a die hard fan of the ex-lead singer of Flyleaf, Lacey Sturm. Her new album Life Screams came out and I absolutely love it. Even though it has some Christian references in it, it doesn't go too far with the whole Jesus thing and I actually listen to it a lot when I meditate. I've been a fan of Flyleaf since their first album in 2005. Lacey is a really kind hearted girl who is bold about her beliefs but doesn't go around hating on others if they don't believe what she does. And her testimony on how God saved her from suicide is really inspiring.

 

I mean yeah I don't believe in the Christian god, but her story hits me hard because I've went through some shit of my own. And the fact that she found a belief that benefitted her life and drove her to create music...yeah that's pretty awesome. I'm sure I'll be a Flyleaf/Lacey fan until I die.

 

When I first deconverted in August of 2015 (it's almost my 1 year anniversary since I joined the site), I couldn't listen to Flyleaf for a while because I used to listen to it for worship. But now I have gotten over the pain of deconversion and have been living my life the way that makes me happy, I can listen to my favorite band again..and their occassional message about God doesn't bother me anymore. I'm also a big fan of Red, another Christian rock band. I've seen both Flyleaf and Red in concert and I was blown away!

 

edit:

By the way I noticed the post said Christian authors, not Christian musicians. Lacey Sturm actually wrote a book called "The Reason" and even though it was a little preachy at times, I loved reading about her story nonetheless. For her message in overcoming depression and suicide..she is one of my role models

Christian musicians are fine too. :) I still have respect for Michael Gungor, Jon Foreman of Switchfoot and a few other christian musicians.

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Fred Clark

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivist/

 

Didn't find his blog until after I deconverted; I'm not sure how fundy-me would have reacted, and if I'd have been fascinated or horrified. He comes from an Evangelical background and spends a lot of his time calling out his fellow Christians for the things they're doing wrong. He points out a lot of the things that bothered me about the Christianity I grew up with, and even explained a few things I knew felt weird but couldn't articulate why. And, much to my surprise, I found it comforting to hear someone talking in christianeze and using all those terms to argue for being good people instead of judgemental pricks.

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At the center of Christianity is the belief that Man is fallen, sinful, worthless and needs redemption from his sin of being born. Also central is the Great Commission and the belief in Heaven and Hell. However an individual preacher, author, musician or blogger may spin this to make the religion more tolerable, the fact remains that the religion is fucking toxic. No, no respect for those who, in sheep's clothing, are promoting such an abomination. 

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I think it's good even when de-converting to realize that there are some christians out there who have some good things to say. I now may have to approach them from a different perspective, but I was wondering if anyone had any christians they still respect and follow?

 

My list:

 

Rob Bell

Francis Chan

Rachel Held Evans

Benjamin Corey

Pete Rollins

Dan Kimball

 

That's all I can think of right now. Anyone else?

Peter Enns. I read his book 'The Bible Tells Me So: Why Defending Scripture Has Made Us Unable to Read It'. If I had read it sooner it might have made a difference to me, but I was already pretty much deconverted by then.

 

His newest book is 'The Sin of Certainty'.

 

The version of Christianity he presents is certainly more appealing to me than the fundy one.

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At the center of Christianity is the belief that Man is fallen, sinful, worthless and needs redemption from his sin of being born. Also central is the Great Commission and the belief in Heaven and Hell. However an individual preacher, author, musician or blogger may spin this to make the religion more tolerable, the fact remains that the religion is fucking toxic. No, no respect for those who, in sheep's clothing, are promoting such an abomination. 

This. I cannot respect anyone who not only believes but takes measures to spread the bullshit for others to wallow in. I know they mean well, but I cannot respect anyone that believes it in 2016. That may make me an asshole but nothing and I mean nothing with regards to magic and religion has panned out since its inception. WTF are people still believing it without question? I had questions and I went at them head on and now I embrace reason and have discarded faith as a confusing, manipulative and useless mechanism that nobody really needs. Those that push it are not doing humanity any favors regardless of how it makes those feels on the receiving end.

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At the center of Christianity is the belief that Man is fallen, sinful, worthless and needs redemption from his sin of being born. Also central is the Great Commission and the belief in Heaven and Hell. However an individual preacher, author, musician or blogger may spin this to make the religion more tolerable, the fact remains that the religion is fucking toxic. No, no respect for those who, in sheep's clothing, are promoting such an abomination. 

 

From what I've seen of Spong's writings, I don't think you'll find any of that shit coming from him. He's practically an atheist. Sure, he says he's not an atheist, but he also says he's not a theist, and his descriptions of "god" come across to me as basically amounting to just a feeling of interconnectedness. His "god" talk annoys me because it sounds like jibberish, but he clearly doesn't espouse traditional Christian theology, and the manner in which he puts the Bible in its proper historical context is impressive.

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Yes, Spong tries to salvage a nonexistent baby from the bathwater we have thrown out. If we ignore a good portion of the Bible we can disguise the resulting religion as a kinder, gentler Christianity. In my view, he is no Christian at all but he is still pushing for a new Christianity that essentially ignores much of the book it's based on. Regardless, Abrahamic religions are built upon the belief in an old Middle Eastern god of war. The New Testament attempts to take some of the sting out it and people like Spong try to sanitize the New Testament even further in order to keep people from abandoning (as they should) the religion altogether, at least in name. I don't see the point.

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He's not an author nor a blogger, but Rich Mullins. He was not only an incredible musician, but also a humble person in general. My Aunt had dinner with him and some friends once in the 90's, and said he was very humble and quiet in conversation.  Keith Green is also a musician that I highly respect.

 

Here is a song about Jesus's love by Mullins:

 

Here is a song about love between a man and his wife by Green:

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If someone writes something I like, I couldn't care less what religion or political affiliation that person embraces. That said, I can't really think of any devout Christian author I admire.

 

As for music, well, there's only one David Eugene Edwards:

 

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Yes, Spong tries to salvage a nonexistent baby from the bathwater we have thrown out. If we ignore a good portion of the Bible we can disguise the resulting religion as a kinder, gentler Christianity. In my view, he is no Christian at all but he is still pushing for a new Christianity that essentially ignores much of the book it's based on. Regardless, Abrahamic religions are built upon the belief in an old Middle Eastern god of war. The New Testament attempts to take some of the sting out it and people like Spong try to sanitize the New Testament even further in order to keep people from abandoning (as they should) the religion altogether, at least in name. I don't see the point.

 

100% agreed.

 

I started studying Spong's books before I ever joined EX-c. I also I also studied many preachers who had dropped out of 'real christianity' to teach the much 'softer' version of  'all inclusive', which is very nice... but it's just another way of trying to make sense of the bible. I think some day, most of these new teachers who are trying to sell us the 'new' christianity will come out of the closet and become non-believers. In their own way, they are already questioning the bible big time. I have to give them all credit though.

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