I just finished Doug Pagitt’s new book, A Christianity Worth Believing: Hope filled, open armed, alive-and-well faith”. Its a really good read and its Doug’s best book by far. Very well written, vulnerable, conversational, theological, playful and intensely personal. It occasionally weaves into Doug’s childhood to dig out laughable moments like a Coen brothers movie. I am a little biased because Doug has been a good friend for a really long time, but its a book that will introduce you to Doug and his family and his thinking and his church and his life – all of which are inseparable in the mind of Doug as well as in his book.
Theologically, Doug pulls the pendulum away from a Reformed theology over to the side sometimes occupied by more liberal thinking theologians. That is not to say its liberal, because that would be short-cutting the conversation. Doug brings a strong argument against what he sees as a Greek-influenced semi-gnostic understanding of redemption and reveals his bias towards a greater continuity with this world and the next, and the wider role of redemption in all of creation which he claims also suffered from the effects of sin. Where his theology is lacking, imho, is regarding the place of human faith, the act of believing, the necessity of grasping the salvation provided for us by God through Christ. Redemption is not an automatic consequence of the resurrection. I will have words with him when we next have a meal together
As for the book – its a great read and a great way to access the mind of Doug Pagitt who really is a wonderful and integral person and will go down in history as one of America’s key leaders in the emerging church movement.
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