LE Blog General

No "Red Meat" for Moderates

I watched Teddy and Hillary, Bill and Joe, and even Barak and Michelle and while I liked much of what I heard and was impressed with the production values and dramatic flair demonstrated by the producers of the DNC convention, I was left thinking to myself, “This is why liberals have so much trouble marshaling consensus.” At the end of the day, liberalism is unable to lock down the central narrative and unify the party or the community because it is, at its core, sympathetic to pluralism. If the only and ultimate aim is unity, then liberalism is an unlikely means to that end.  So the question for liberals (including evangelical Christian liberals and moderates) is never, are we unified, but are we unified enough? Are we cohesive enough?

The Anglican "Disneyfication" of Moderation

The last several weeks have been…well…disheartening if you are paying much attention to what is going on in the World Anglican Communion and their Lambeth Conference.  As a liberal evangelical my sympathies lie with the liberals who are working more fully to include gay and lesbian parishioners and clergy in the life and ministry of the church.  But as a Christian moderate I’m not eager for either side to “win” if it means that the other side “loses.”  But therein lies the rub!  The language of unity and popular calls for us all “to come together” seem naïve.  What can we do when our differences are real and irreconcilable?

Does God Take Summer Vacation?

Maybe it’s not a good policy to make light of hell, but it seems plausible that the inspiration for Jonathan Edwards’ sermon, “Sinners in the Hand of an Angry God” may have come less from the biblical text and more from his experiences of a New England sanctuary in high summer.  I know that those of you in Texas and California and the deep South will object to this claim, but there is nowhere hotter in the world than a colonial style New England church in July.

Jesus of Nazareth, Feeder of the 5000 and Mega-Church Leader

In a ceremony calculated to gain maximum exposure in both the local, national, and imperial press Jesus of Nazareth publicly endorsed Gaius Aelius Agrippa in his run for Provincial Quaestor. This comes as something of a surprise since observers expected Jesus to remain neutral in the race. Pundits are speculating that Gaius Aelius Agrippa may have offered Jesus a seat in the Sanhedrin or on his proposed Jubilee Year Taskforce. The two appeared on stage together today at a rally in Damascus sponsored by the Carpenter’s Union Local 316.

Be Afraid. Be Very Afraid...but not of Moderates.

First, an observation from Brian McLaren in Jim Wallis’ blog, God’s Politics ,(May 16, 2008).

“First, there are the fearsome -- those who like to make others afraid.
Second, there are the fearless -- those who refuse to be intimidated by the fearsome.
Then in the middle are the fearful -- those who are afraid to associate with the fearless because they might incur the ire of the fearsome.”

Intuitively, this rubric for understanding personalities seems right to me. I feel as if I know people who fall into all three categories. Like any organizational scheme I’m sure it has its flaws, tough cases that do not slide easily into one category or another, but when I first read these lines they struck me as insightful.

Independence Day, Patriotism, and Christianity

I’m a patriot.

(I’m also a Patriot’s fan—and please no e-mails from Jets fans. Every coaching staff does the same video-taping thing, including your guy! Get over it.)

And I'm a Christian.

I'm just not sure how to be both at once.

Evangelical Liberals, Tom Cruise, and Kent McManigal

I’ll be blogging here so I’ll introduce myself. My name is Brandon Daniel-Hughes and I’m a Liberal and an Evangelical. That reads a bit like a confession or an introduction at a self-help group.  Maybe that’s appropriate.