Navigating the Crises
Today's video is courtesy of filmmaker Ryan Pettey, director/editor of Satellite Pictures.
In this video, author and pastor Brian McLaren discusses the idea of surrogate arguments, in which a debate over one thing is really a means for arguing something completely different. According to McClaren, the argument over the age of the earth is one such example, in which an apparent scientific debate is actually a discussion over the nature of religious authority and how previous generations have understood how we should interpret the Bible. Such debates can lead to two crises: one of confidence and one of ethics. While some have the confidence to differ with the views of the generation that raised them in the faith, McLaren points out that some are not able to overcome the ethical challenge of differing with grace and love. When this happens, he notes, the end result is damage to the Church and a retrenching of the views of the older generation. Managing the crises well requires courage of convictions while also respecting tradition and maintaining a gracious spirit. Anything less, is not only unwise, it is also unfaithful.
Commentary written by the BioLogos editorial team.
Brian McLaren is an author, speaker, activist, and public theologian. A former college English teacher and pastor, he is an ecumenical global networker among innovative Christian leaders. He graduated from the University of Maryland with his degrees in English (Bachelor of Arts and Masters). In 2004, he was awarded a Doctor of Divinity Degree from Carey Theological Seminary in Vancouver, BC, Canada, and in 2010, he received a second honorary doctorate from Virginia Theological Seminary. Brian has been active in networking and mentoring church planters and pastors. He is a popular conference speaker and a frequent guest lecturer for denominational and ecumenical leadership gatherings around the world. He is also an accomplished writer and has authored books such as A New Kind of Christianity, The Secret Message of Jesus, and Finding Our Way Again.