Volume 02, Issue 05 – May 2018, Evangelically Atheist Newsletter

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Trump May Be the End of the World As We Know — But For Some Evangelicals That’s Just Fine

If you’re eager to get Armageddon over with and move on to heaven? Well, Donald J. Trump seems as good a choice as any. https://www.alternet.org

Redefining Religious Freedom as Religious Privilege

The Senate bill is not the bulwark its name suggests but the latest salvo in the ongoing attempt to redefine religious freedom as religious privilege. It does nothing to defend the First Amendment; in fact, it violates it. https://religionnews.com

White Evangelicals Can’t Quit Donald Trump

With two alleged extramarital affairs looming over the presidency, white evangelicals are doubling down on their support for Donald Trump. But the near-term political gains their support is yielding may come at a high cost for the future of the faith. https://www.theatlantic.com

Church of The Donald

As Christian networks have become more comfortable with politics, the Trump administration has turned them into a new pipeline for its message. Trump has forged a particularly tight marriage of convenience with Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network, which since early in the 2016 campaign has offered consistent friendly coverage and been granted remarkable access in return. https://www.politico.com

One Nation Under God? National Anthem, Sacred Flag and Confused Church

Over the last year, Americans have been fixated on the behaviour of athletes and spectators during the singing of the national anthem at sporting events. Those athletes who have chosen to kneel during the anthem to draw attention to racial injustice and police brutality in the United States have been widely vilified. http://www.abc.net.au

Christian Nationalism: Good for Politicians, Bad for America and the World

White evangelical Christians voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump, despite his well-documented character flaws and moral failings. It turns out that their support wasn’t just about hatred of Hillary Clinton or Trump’s promise to give them the Supreme Court of their dreams. A new study points to another more disturbing motivating force: Christian nationalism. http://otherwords.org

What is Hell?

The recent dispute over whether Pope Francis denied the existence of hell in an interview attracted wide attention. This isn’t surprising, since the belief in an afterlife, where the virtuous are rewarded with a place in heaven and the wicked are punished in hell, is a core teaching of Christianity. So what is the Christian idea of hell? https://theconversation.com

America’s Next Generation of Muslims Insists on Crafting Its Own Story

The newest generation of American Muslims is a mosaic, one of the most racially and ethnically diverse faith groups in the country. At a time when all religions are struggling to keep youth engaged, Islam is growing in the U.S., according to the Pew Research Center. https://www.npr.org

Dozens of Evangelical Leaders Meet to Discuss How Trump Era Has Unleashed ‘Grotesque Caricature’ of Their Faith

About 50 top leaders of major evangelical institutions attended an invitation-only gathering this week to discuss the future and the “soul” of evangelicalism at a time when many of them are concerned their faith group has become tainted by its association with divisive politics under President Trump. https://www.washingtonpost.com

You Cannot Derive Morality from the Bible Alone

Essentially, there is little moral clarity in the Bible, and even when it gives seemingly clear instructions, like in the 10 commandments, these need contextualising and interpreting. For example, theologians accept “thou shalt not kill” but still arrive at just war theory. When the reader is commanded not to eat shellfish, further interpretation is needed, often resulting in historically contextualising the moral proclamations so that you arrive at Covenantal moral relativism. http://www.patheos.com

Twin Cities School Bus Driver Taken Off Route After Leading Kids in Prayer

It’s not the first time that George Nathaniel has raised concerns by praying with children on a bus. Four years ago, Nathaniel was fired from his job driving Burnsville kids to school for the same reason. But that didn’t stop Nathaniel, pastor of a Minneapolis congregation, from trying again with students attending Nasha Shkola, a Brooklyn Park charter school focused on Russian language and culture. http://www.startribune.com

Woman Sets Car on Fire With Children Inside

Witnesses intervened and rescued the woman’s three daughters, ages 9, 11 and 13. Witnesses told investigators that at one point she said, “We’re going to see Jesus.” She left on foot with the children but was later detained by a Harris County deputy constable. https://www.nbcdfw.com

Passages from the Bible Discovered Behind Qur’an Manuscript

The only recorded palimpsest in which a Christian text has been effaced to make way for the Islamic holy text is to go on sale at Christie’s. https://www.theguardian.com

Being Muslim in the U.S.

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