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View Diary: President Obama offers an Easter and Passover greeting (137 comments)

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  •  JG, at the risk of prolonging the discussion... (0+ / 0-)

    Would you explain for us how you define the difference between "Orthodox Christians" and "Fundamentalist Christians"? In other words, at what point does your "Orthodox Christian" cross over the line and become a "Fundamentalist Christian".

    You cited religious scholar George Marsden:

    Fundamentalism depends upon the proposition that the Bible is the inerrant word of God, which means that it is completely without error or contradiction and that it must be read literally.
    Doesn't the President believe that the bible is the "inerrant word of God"? Moreover, if the President believes the bible is accurate on the subject of Jesus being literally resurrected from the dead, what's your beef with six-day creationism?

    Marsden says American fundamentalists are "in opposition to liberal theology in the churches or to changes in cultural values or mores, such as those associated with secular humanism." Isn't the President's opposition to same-sex marriage based on his understanding of Christian doctrine?

     

    •  Again, Fundamentalism is a distinct movement. (0+ / 0-)

      It's not a catch-all for all orthodox Christianity, or even for all conservative Christianity.

      Would you explain for us how you define the difference between "Orthodox Christians" and "Fundamentalist Christians"? In other words, at what point does your "Orthodox Christian" cross over the line and become a "Fundamentalist Christian".
      When they take on the worldview and tenets of Fundamentalist epistemology, theology, and cultural thought.

      It's not as if "orthodox" and "Fundamentalist" are two separate groups; Fundamentalists are a small subset of the larger set of orthodoxy. It is possible to be orthodox without being Fundamentalist, but it isn't possible to be Fundamentalist without being orthodox.

      Orthodox Christianity is a broad movement, comprised of all who hold to (or would hold to, if they were creedal) the Nicene Creed; it includes Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, mainline Protestants, evangelicals, Anabaptists, and most other major Christian denominations (with the exception of Mormonism).

      Fundamentalism is a subset of just one of the branches of orthodox Christianity, an extremely conservative version of evangelical Christianity.

      Doesn't the President believe that the bible is the "inerrant word of God"? Moreover, if the President believes the bible is accurate on the subject of Jesus being literally resurrected from the dead, what's your beef with six-day creationism?
      I haven't quizzed him specifically on the topic, but "inerrancy" has a very specific theological meaning; I'd be surprised if the President was an inerrantist, given his background in the theologically-liberal UCC, and his having never espoused things like six-day creationism.

      There are many Christians who don't hold to inerrancy or six-day creationism, who do believe in a literal resurrection. Just because one believes that some things in the Bible are literally historical, does not mean that one must accept that all of them are.

      Marsden says American fundamentalists are "in opposition to liberal theology in the churches or to changes in cultural values or mores, such as those associated with secular humanism." Isn't the President's opposition to same-sex marriage based on his understanding of Christian doctrine?
      Again, there are many people who oppose same-sex marriage based on religious beliefs who do not hold to the whole of the Fundamentalist worldview.

      I disagree with the President and his continuing opposition to same-sex marriage, in part based on my own religious worldview, but that doesn't mean that one of us is a Fundamentalist and the other of us is a liberal.

      The Fundamentalist worldview goes much deeper than mere opposition to same-sex marriage; it involves resistance to just about all of the past 50 years of social progress, including feminism, increasing religious pluralism, and expansion of civil rights for LGBT people.

      If the President were a Fundamentalist, he wouldn't have been a member of the UCC (a decidedly non-Fundamentalist denomination) and he wouldn't go to St. John's Episcopal when he does go to church here in DC. Given that separatism is a major tenet of the Fundamentalist worldview, no Fundamentalist would willingly subject him- or herself and his/her family to what Fundamentslists believe is "false doctrine."

      "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

      by JamesGG on Sat Apr 07, 2012 at 05:00:06 PM PDT

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