Author Archive | David Gushee

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It’s time to worry about leftist fundamentalism, too

Much of my recent career has been spent analyzing and resisting right-wing politics, often mixed with religion. But today I say that there is plenty to worry about on the left, too. There is left-wing politics and religion (or anti-religion), that also should be alarming to thoughtful people. Here are a few of the most recent examples: […]

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My visit to the land of teenagers

In this column I offer a completely unscientific set of impressions about characteristics of today’s teenagers. It is based on a weeklong immersion experience with my Decatur, Ga., church’s youth group, currently on retreat together in rainy Panama City, Fla. I welcome reader feedback on this one. Think about this amazing thought: just about everybody […]

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Manchester: What kind of person does this?

(RNS) As I write, the identity of the Manchester terrorist has not been revealed by British authorities. But we do know this: Whoever he was, he decided that the culminating act of his life should be the murder of children at a rock concert. He succeeded in killing over 20 and injuring 60. Of all the […]

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Telling the story of my departure from American evangelicalism

Recently the virtual pages of Religion News Service have been graced with further crossfire related to the endless evangelical argument about LGBTQ inclusion. Jonathan Merritt posted a piece defending blogger evangelical blogger Jen Hatmaker against her evangelical critics, who have treated her to the now-standard exclusion, criticism, and rejection since she offered full LGBTQ inclusion. Conservative […]

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The church’s surprising public contribution

Most Christian social ethicists have been trained, and have trained others, in a tradition in which the most important thing the church does is to address public moral problems via declaration or action. I am discovering as a pastor that the church has other ways it contributes to society that may be just as important. […]

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Frances FitzGerald on how evangelicals lost their way

Evangelist Billy Graham, center, is flanked by GOP presidential candidate Richard Nixon, right, and Gov. Spiro T. Agnew, the GOP vice presidential choice, left, as he delivers the benediction at the 1968 Republican National Convention in Miami Beach, Fla. Mr. Graham prayed for the unity and welfare of the nation. Religion News Service file photo […]

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In search of honest, smart, independent people

America is in need of honest, smart, independent people. Our future is grim unless we can find some, in a hurry. We have plenty of dishonest, ignorant, ideological people. It is hard to know which should come first in that list. Are people ideological because they are ignorant, or are they dishonest because they are […]

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An ethical analysis of the ‘New Sanctuary Movement’

The “New Sanctuary Movement” is under considerable discussion these days. What exactly people mean by “sanctuary” is not always clear, but the basic idea is to help undocumented immigrants in their struggle to avoid deportation under US immigration laws. I encountered the first “Sanctuary Movement” in the 1980s, when some churches organized to shelter Salvadorans […]

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The Christian social ethics project hits a wall

For at least one hundred years, the primary project of Christian ethics in America has been American public reform. Today, that project has hit a wall named Donald Trump. But it was already under serious question. Beginning with early 20th century Social Gospel Christianity, and exemplified most strongly in the Baptist theologian/activist Walter Rauschenbusch, Christian ethics […]

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