07. Good News of Great Joy

Manger at night under fog

Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace among those whom he favors!”
Luke 2: 8 – 14

Continue reading “07. Good News of Great Joy”

06. Who is God? Pt. 1

my-name-is-change

Editor’s Note: “This is the first in a three-part article discussing the nature and character of God.”

Part 1 – The Changing Face of God.

My oldest son is now reaching the age where we’re starting to have more in depth conversations about the concept of God, and in doing so, it has driven me to think back to my earliest understandings of God. Surprisingly, my understanding of God at 10 years of age and my understanding of God at 25 years of age were not that much different. But the God that I understand and know today is completely different from the God of my youth. I’ve questioned myself on this. Do I actually serve a different God than I did in my youth or that many of my friends and families do today? Was I simply misguided in my earlier understandings, or have I actually accepted bad doctrine and become misguided today? I’ve heard many others raise similar questions as they too move through their deconstruction or reconstruction of faith. And yet, when I look to the Bible, I find that I’m not the first to experience this evolution, nor do I suspect that I am the last. Continue reading “06. Who is God? Pt. 1”

05. The Literal, Beautiful Mess We Call The Bible. Pt3

stories

Editor’s Note: “This is the third in a three-part article discussing my approach to the Bible.  Previous articles are listed below:”
Part 1 – How it fell apart
Part2 – Real People, Real Times, Real Reasons

Part 3 – The Stories Beneath The Stories

In our previous conversations we have looked into a few different ideas for how we can approach the Bible. In our final article in this series I’d like to take us one step further and ask you to evaluate the scriptures in the context of the thematic method they are being told within. Too often we simply look at the scriptures as a literal, inerrant, retelling of historical events and interactions with God. But this is a problem. Reading the scriptures in this manner strips them down to simple ancient history and removes the much bigger picture that they convey. Continue reading “05. The Literal, Beautiful Mess We Call The Bible. Pt3”

Book Review: Finding God In The Waves

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I am extremely happy to finally post my review about “Science Mike” McHargue’s new book, Finding God in the Waves: How I Lost My Faith And Found It Again Through Science. This book is easily near the top of my book recommendations for the year and one I have been excited about reading for months.

If you’re a regular reader here at Unboxing God, then conversations involving faith and doubt through a lens of modern science and history are not new to you.  But until recently, finding resources willing to discuss these ideas have resulted only in “pseudo-scientific” products focused more on twisting or discrediting science than dissecting the tenets of faith through it.  For those of you frustrated by this, Finding God in the Waves will be refreshing as it discusses God, faith, and modern Christianity through the lens of accepted scientific claims.  But this is no simple defense of orthodoxy.  Mike pulls no punches as he lays out both the claims of faith and the criticisms, side by side, examining both in a clear, concise, and easily readable manner. This is the single most important book on faith, doubt, and science that I have ever read.  Mike provides not only a rational understanding of God that works well within today’s understandings of science, but practical steps that anyone can implement to not only grow close to God, but to be transformed into what can only be described as the mind of Christ as well.
Continue reading “Book Review: Finding God In The Waves”

04. The Literal, Beautiful Mess we call the Bible. Pt2

Mexico, Michoacan, Morelia, books in university library

Editor’s Note: “This is the second in a three-part article discussing my approach to the Bible.  Previous articles are listed below:”
Part 1 – How it fell apart

Part 2 – Real People, Real Times, Real Reasons…

The previous article discusses many of the explanations and reasoning behind why my faith in the Bible fell apart several years ago, but like many articles on this site it is important to understand that the story does not end there. I did not simply walk away from the Bible, tossing it aside as if it were simply a dated, fictional book with no value. I was, and still am, continually drawn back to the scriptures. There is something beautiful found within. While I lost the ability to experience divinity within because of the literal, inerrant requirements that had been placed on them; I continued to return to them time and time again. Something within those pages called to me, something within stirred my soul and continued to pull me towards a better understanding of scripture that allowed divinity to reveal itself, free of the shackles of my previous conceptions.

Continue reading “04. The Literal, Beautiful Mess we call the Bible. Pt2”

03.The Literal, Beautiful Mess we call the Bible. Pt 1

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Editor’s Note: “This is the first in a multi-part article deconstructing the way I approached the Bible.  This first article explains the issues that led to me losing my faith in scripture, the following articles will explain how I regained my love and appreciation for them.  This post should not be taken as an attack on scripture, but rather my journey to an updated appreciation of the scriptures.”

Part 1 – How it fell apart

In earlier articles, I have alluded to the fact that one of the major problems that led to my disbelief was the teaching that the Bible is an inerrant, infallible book which must be taken 100% literally. To read it any other way, I was taught, distorts and corrupts the message of God. While I had heard of other interpretations on scripture, I was taught that their view point was heretical, dangerous, and one that I should avoid at all costs. So for much of my early life I did just that.

Continue reading “03.The Literal, Beautiful Mess we call the Bible. Pt 1”