Unsystematic Theology

The Best Road

The Best Road

or, If God Has a Wonderful Plan for My Life, Why Am I Suffering? From my files: September 2008. My long-time readers know that the best way to get a post out of me is for somebody to ask me a thoughtful question.  That hasn’t happened as much lately as it used to, but the […]

Heavens! A St. Peter Joke with Good Theology!

Heavens! A St. Peter Joke with Good Theology!

Good heavens! Rev. Bosco Peters of Liturgy.co.nz has gone and found it. It’s a St. Peter joke (you know, this guy dies and goes to the pearly gates and he meets St. Peter and St. Peter says….) that actually has good theology. Well, for a St. Peter joke. Have a gander: A man dies and […]

"I Have a Sign": Answering Spiritual Abusers According to Their Folly

“I Have a Sign”: Answering Spiritual Abusers According to Their Folly

“Are you looking for a sign from God? This is it.” — seen on too many church signs In the popular imagination, Fred Phelps and the Westboro Baptist “Church” probably deserve their status as the archetypal hateful ultra-fundamentalist spiritual abusers. (They’re the ones who popularized the infamous slogan, “God hates [anti-homosexual slur redacted]s.”) For reasons […]

Five People You Won't Meet in Heaven (And One You Might)

Five People You Won’t Meet in Heaven (And One You Might)

by Eric M. Pazdziora Many different people believe that if you are a Christian you will go to heaven… If this is so, that means that Fred Phelps will go to heaven. When you consider that non-Christians don't, that would mean that Phelps would go but not Princess Di and M. Gandhi. Is this fair? […]

"You Might Be a Sadducee If…"

“You Might Be a Sadducee If…”

[From my archives.] Ah, those good old Pharisees.  They’ve been dead and gone for centuries, yet we never tire of talking about the dangers of their beliefs.  I’ve lost count of the number of sermons I’ve heard, articles I’ve seen, and books I’ve read that in some way or another caution the Christians of modern […]

Is Christmas Pagan? Putting the “Bug” back in “Humbug”

Is Christmas Pagan? Putting the “Bug” back in “Humbug”

Now that Christmas is almost upon us, it is fitting that we turn our attention to the words of Christians who are doing their best to spread the message of their deeply cherished beliefs about the true meaning of this holiday season: "There is nothing Christian about Christmas. Sure, religion has tried to make it […]

Hypocriticism II: Blessed are the Disillusioned

Hypocriticism II: Blessed are the Disillusioned

This is a follow-up to my post “Hypocriticism”. Only, it was pretty old, and when I went back and re-read it just now, having done a lot more study about Spiritual Abuse over the past several years, I realized that it was rather appallingly clumsily written. Let’s just say it featured the phrase “bitter about the church.” So […]

Jesus and the Parable of the Man who Needed Health Care

Jesus and the Parable of the Man who Needed Health Care

Yes, there is such a parable in the original. The first several times I didn’t realize what it was about; Jesus insists on framing the question in a way that invalidates most of our categories of discussing the issue. I’ve taken the liberty of writing my own paraphrase, with a few hopefully not-entirely-unwarranted interpolations and […]