Daily Riches: Do Protestants Need to Repent? (Richard Rohr and Marcus Borg)

“Neither [Catholics or Protestants have] really let the Word of God guide their lives. …If Catholics need to be converted, Protestants need to do penance. Their shout of “sola Scriptura” (only Scripture) has left them at the mercy of their own cultures, their own limited education, their own prejudices, and their own selective reading of some texts while avoiding others. It has become laughable, as slavery, racism, sexism, xenophobia, and homophobia have lasted authoritatively into our time – by people who claim to love Jesus! I think they need to do penance for what they have often done with the Bible! They largely interpreted the Bible in a very individualistic and otherworldly way. It was an evacuation plan for the next world – and just for their group. Most of Evangelical Protestantism has no cosmic message, no social message, and little sense of social justice or care for the outsider. Both Catholics and Protestants (Orthodox, too!) found a way to do our own thing while posturing friendship with Jesus.” Richard Rohr*

“Those of my university students who have grown up outside of the church (about half of them) have a very negative stereotypical view of Christianity. When I ask them to write a short essay on their impression of Christianity, they consistently use five adjectives: Christians are literalistic, anti-intellectual, self-righteous, judgmental, and bigoted.” Marcus Borg

“If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge,
and if I have a faith that can move mountains,
but do not have love,
I am nothing.”
1 Corinthians 13:2

Moving From the Head to the Heart

  • Do you see “racism, sexism, xenophobia, and homophobia” in yourself? …in others at church? Do you hear these evils addressed from the pulpit?
  • Are you “anti-intellectual, self-righteous, [or] judgmental?” Does your church culture encourage curiosity and learning, humility, and the practice of unconditional love towards outsiders and those who are different? Is your church a welcoming, safe place for anyone who comes?
  • Are you part of the solution or the problem in your church? What about the leaders in your church, are they part of the solution or the problem? What can change?

Abba, thank you for working through your church, in spite of many things. Please make us more like your Son.

For More: Yes, And by Richard Rohr

*Don’t worry, yesterday we looked at Catholics!


These “Daily Riches” are for your encouragement as you seek after God and he seeks after you. I hope you’ll follow my blog, and share it. My goal is to share something of unique value with you daily in 400 words or less. I appreciate your interest!  –  Bill (Psalm 90:14)

“I practice daily what I believe; everything else is religious talk.”

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