The Evangelical Heart

Big Heart of Art - 1000 Visual Mashups

qthomasbower via Compfight

Rachel Held Evans posted recently about The Scandal of the Evangelical Heart. Citing a comment by John Piper (“It’s right for God to slaughter women and children anytime he pleases. God gives life and he takes life. Everybody who dies, dies because God wills that they die.”) she notes that when we approach the Bible in the ways that we traditionally have, we risk becoming something less than human in our responses to suffering. And we risk worshipping a God that is heartless and cruel and capricious. She calls for us to follow Jesus with both our “head and heart” rather than setting aside empathy and emotion as we approach theology.

May we be a people who do not harden our hearts when encounter things that ought to break our heart.

From the blog post:

I’m not sure he and I will ever understand one another, but I’ve decided to quit apologizing for my questions.  It’s not enough for me to maintain my intellectual integrity as a Christian; I also want to maintain my emotional integrity as a Christian. And I don’t need answers to all of my questions to do that. I need only the courage to be honest about my questions and doubts, and the patience to keep exploring and trusting in spite of them.

Related Reading

The Dehumanizing Effects of Gender Roles

Daniel DeCristo via Compfight Rachel Held Evans posted this really wonderful blog about the absurd legalism of gender roles. She not only calls out the legalism of these roles, but also the ways that we become less human when we are reduced to a stereotype rather than a human being with specific gifts and passions.  You’ll…

The Suffering of God

NYC.andre via Compfight This seems like a good follow-up post from what Greg posted yesterday. Charisma posted this reflection on the problem of evil and the suffering of God. It’s a great summary of our thinking about what accounts for the kind of world we see where tragedies like Newtown occur. From the article: C.…

Hellbound? in the Washington Post

Kevin Miller, the writer/director of “Hellbound?” was featured in the Washington Post in an article titled “Hell is a reality distortion field.” He challenges us to consider that what we believe about hell or anything else is partially conditioned by many things other than just the Bible. This reality distortion field prevents us from considering…

Rachel Held Evans Interviews Greg on Benefit of the Doubt

We shared an interview that Frank Viola did with Greg yesterday, and we’re thrilled to share an interview that Rachel Held Evans posted today. Rachel is very familiar with the resistance and criticism that comes when dearly held beliefs are challenged. We feel like she is a kindred spirit in this regard. We hope you’ll…

The Evangelical Mind

Peter via Compfight As a follow-up to Rachel Held Evans’ thoughts yesterday on the Scandal of the Evangelical Heart, we thought we would post this reflection by Peter Enns about the Deeper Scandal of the Evangelical Mind. He claims that in the current environment when professors and pastors are constrained by the consequences of asking…

How can prayer change God’s mind?

You’ve argued that since God is all-good, he’s always doing the most he can do in every situation to bring about good. But you have also argued that prayer can change God’s mind. How are these two beliefs compatible?