Saturday, February 4, 2012

Book recommendation: The Heart of Christianity

by Humberto Casanova

For a nice modern way of looking at Christianity, you should definitively read this book by Marcus Borg, The Heart of Christianity: Rediscovering a Life of Faith.

At the beginning of the book, Borg supplies the following chart that gives an idea of the differences between the conservative-fundamentalist-right-wing Christianity (Earlier Paradigm) and the modern-liberal-left-wing Christianity (Emerging Paradigm):

Earlier Paradigm
Emerging Paradigm
The Bible’s origin
A divine product with divine authority

A human response  to God
Biblical interpretation
Historical and metaphorical

The Bible’s function
Revelation of doctrine and morals
Metaphorical and sacramental

Christian life emphasis
An afterlife and what to believe or do to be saved
Transformation in this life through relationship with God

These topics may look difficult in the chart but the book explains it all in very simple terms. It is not a book for scholars.

Borg is on the left side of the emerging church movement.

Humberto Casanova lives in Nashville and likes to dig into the world of the Ancient Near East and the Bible. He’s also interested in promoting the separation of church & state, or a secular society. His passion for social justice takes the form of stopping religion when it tramples on the rights of others. His religious reflection comes from a historical and scientific perspective.

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