I probably wouldn’t meet the criteria for being a typical fundamentalist Christian for a few reasons:
- I don’t interpret the Bible literally 100% of the time
- I believe Evolution is a proven hypothesis
- I am highly critical of the American church social stratification
- I’ve extensively questioned my beliefs about God, identity, and social norms
- I was neither raised in a baptist nor evangelical church
It’s just that the title is too catchy to miss out on. That said, here’s a brief bibliography:
I went to a Methodist church when I was young. However, during my college years, having no convictions about the truths of any one creed, I “experimented” with other churches, to which I finally have declared no formal denomination. Moreover, during that period I questioned my faith intensively, heavily debating atheists on the alt.atheism newsgroups and challenging me to sharpen my understanding of the philosophical concepts of epistemology and ontology, which both came after some research about theistic and atheistic scientific arguments.
During the period of transition after school towards full-time missionary work (which, incidentally, I am still in), I found myself clicking on a link in Craigslist that had two rather interesting words: “Peak Oil”.
Clicking on the ensuing results arose in me a great sense of looming despair and destruction. The world economy is addicted to oil… no scalable alternatives… energy requirements of humanity unsustainable… Were we really doomed as a civilization? Are we really that addicted to oil? Do much of the past and current headlines involving global tensions really have a rather simple, easy-to-define connection…?
As I read and thought about it more, the answers became clear: yes on all counts. Throwing climate change, population overshoot, our culture of hyperindividualism, consumerism, excess, and waste into this picture, for me, paints a very basic picture: we’re outgrowing the resources of and destroying our planet, making it uninhabitable for current and future generations. We’re living in a state of rapid moral and spiritual decrepitude, all the while thinking that, essentially, we’re going to live forever, growth is sustainable indefinitely, all we have to do is rely on human ingenuity to get us out of this one.
Well, dear reader, I have news for you: there will definitely be no such aversion, for the vast majority of us. Throughout the history of mankind, the world population has fluctuated between 100-200 million people due to famine, disease, and wars. Now we’re at 6 billion – creeping towards 7 – by the end of this decade. So you might get lucky, you might already be prepared, you might even think of starting to prepare, but the truth of the matter is a lot people are going to suffer, if they’re not suffering already. But the million dollar, life-and-death, good vs. evil question is, why care?
My answer is because there’s a human Truth (note the capital) behind it all – harmoniously explaining the why we do things, the who we’ve done it to, and why we’ll keep on doing it unless told by revelation not to. The lies of sustainable growth, quick fixes, and instant gratification need to go NOW if we are to get any closer to the true meaning of our existence.
With that, I’m going to open with a few thoughts about why I started this blog.
- Jesus’s example of living has important positive ecological and social ramifications in a world of climate chaos and Peak Oil. I would go as far as to say all-important, but we’ll get into that later.
- Climate Change/Chaos and Peak Energy will be the two greatest threats to modern civilization in the coming years. The world is already rapidly approaching endgame, which is already being played and can only result in catastrophe. Will you choose to react, or proact?
- I get irritated when someone knocks Christian apocalypticism without substance or any reference to source material. In light of this, I look to stress as well as analyze the Apocalypse as it is discussed in mass media and elsewhere, evaluating theories of what some of the symbolism in Revelation, Daniel, and Ezekiel represent.
- I hope to encourage others to apply their minds to the truth of humanity’s current situation, serving as a guide away from the “sheeple” mentality and towards realizing the truth of their own spiritual condition (“Christian” or non-Christian).
I have a lot to say about the spiritual state of the US, US Christianity, and their interrelatedness in the social and moral fabric of the world.
- “Christianity” in the US today is mostly intolerable, hypocritical, and edging towards apostasy, in both doctrine and practice (if not already there). Meanwhile, the truth of Jesus (resurrection, forgiveness of sins, et. al) gets muddled and no one becomes convicted of sin, whereby it follows that society becomes even further morally and spiritually decrepit.
- GW Bush has politicized religion. First of all, it’s constitutionally averse. If you’re even paying attention to some of what he’s been doing, it should be pretty clear that he’s at least a hypocritical Christian, and at most a conniving, demagogic, old-boy’s-club liar who uses God as his primary justification for committing crime and being above the law.
- “Religious leaders” (pastors, preachers, bishops, etc.) in the US are mostly misleading, or minimally effective to their congregations (hence the sheeple mentality). This is due to what Paul would term as no words of prophesy, meaning challenges “cutting into” the hearts of people. Some have gone to the extent of being openly political. So, for example, instead of leadership by both example and word, you have a kind of reversion back to “interpretation” – where the manner of leadership is done primarily by mouth.
- It would follow, naturally, that I have a strong disliking towards the current church structure. It desperately needs to be reorganized or even dismantled to return to its sustainable, grassroots origins, NOT its current multi-million-dollar-church-with-fifty-“full-time staff”-structure.
- I am discouraged at the lack of intellectual discourse in the church. Referring back to my fourth point, I believe it is partially due to church organization and the “sheeple” mentality of “being ministered to” (which is reactive) vs. being a proactive agent of change. Furthermore, I would argue that the root of this proaction is the Holy Spirit.
Finally, please take note that I am open to changing my position based on better empirical, parallel, or overall argument. My intention isn’t to engage in polemics, but to further our understanding of the truth of our overall situation – so neither should yours.