What does it mean that Christ died for our sins?

What does it mean that Christ died for our sins?

Andrew Parker argues that the metaphor of being 'saved from sins', used by St Paul and St John was taken too literally by the Medieval church and in the process the political reality of Jesus' message was lost.

Since the Middle Ages and the rise of conservative-revisionism within the Catholic Church the traditional answer to this question has always been that Jesus died for our sins to make atonement for them. However, in recent years liberal scholarship has rightly pointed out that this is just a spurious conservative gloss not found in the texts for the very good reason that, however you understand the idea of atonement (and any number of ways have been tried) it invariably reduces the texts themselves to nonsense. This is all very well but it still leaves us with the question as to what Paul meant in I Corinthians 15.3:

For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures ...

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Dying to the Law: The Church That Dies

Dying to the Law: The Church That Dies

Katharine Sarah Moody on the idolatry of God. Having written earlier about the God who dies, Katharine here explores the fate of the church.

Like the last, this article is inspired by the Idolatry of God retreat in Belfast in April, which focussed on the work of Peter Rollins.

Slavoj Žižek is one of a number of contemporary philosophers who find in Saint Paul a rich resource for their own projects, particularly in relation to political theory and ideology critique.

One of the key problems that Paul wrestles with is the relationship between sin and the law. In Romans 7, he writes that sin seizes its chance in the commandment, and his awareness of the intermingling of the law and the desire to transgress the law prefigures the psychoanalytic insight that the law operates not only at the level of the letter of the law but also according to its ‘obscene superego supplement’. This is the law’s inherent injunction. It’s a level of implicit rather than explicit discourse that is obscene in its contradiction or transgression of the public text of the law, supplementary because it is this injunction that is what binds the subject to the law, and superegotistical because it takes the form of an injunction to enjoy.

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What unites us is central

What unites us is central

Julian Wood thinks it is more important to celebrate what we share than to focus what divides us

One of the gifts of a spiritually-led life is that we can reflect on what unites us as well as what divides us from other people.

I struggle with attending church- but then often think, ‘Hang on - I agree with all of Christianity apart from the church dogma’.

This is a creed I can sign up to - and I think almost all Christians, non-Christians and people of other faiths can sign up to as well. Can you?

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Quick hymns at the PCN progressive liturgy weekend

Quick hymns at the PCN progressive liturgy weekend

Set the challenge of writing a hymn in twenty minutes, could we produce something both progressive and singable?

​Hymn writing is not normally a communal endeavour, but in her session on the use of hymns Ali Morley set retreatants the challenge of first choosing key words and then putting them together into a short hymn. Each group came up with between two and four lines and somehow we shuffled them into three verses, later reduced to two in an effort to eliminate repetition. Although we wrote the words for the tune of Amazing Grace, we found later that they went better to Dundee, the tune associated with ‘I to the hills will lift mine eyes’

Embracing love, accepting all

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The God Who Dies

The God Who Dies

Katharine Sarah Moody writes about the fictitious projections in which we place our trust, including notions of God. She argues that Christianity has an insight which allows it to live with that.

This blog was written after Katharine returned from a retreat in Belfast which explored the work of Peter Rollins. The title of the retreat was taken from Rollins’ fifth book, The Idolatry of God: Breaking our Addiction to Certainty and Satisfaction. As Katharine explains, Rollins is influenced by Lacanian psychoanalysis and the work of philosopher Slavoj Žižek.

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In Defence of Doubt

In Defence of Doubt

Starting on 18th June, PCN Britain and the Open Christianity Network Ireland are sponsoring a tour of the United Kingdom by Dr. Val Webb, who will be speaking on the new edition of her book ‘In Defence of Doubt: an invitation to adventure’

Seventeen years ago, I wrote a book called In Defence of Doubt: an Invitation to Adventure. It was written in ‘‘white heat,’’ the summer we moved from Australia to the United States. Such moves are always dislocating because you leave behind old friends and rituals, but they are also ‘’ first-day-of-the-rest-of-your-life’’ moments where you have a chance for self examination.

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