Progressive Church of Christ Blogs, E-Zines, Writings and Groups

Dear readers,

This is a list of blogs and discussion groups of particular value to members of the progressive Churches of Christ. Please post recommendations for other sites to be added (author, blog name, link).

Here are the rules:

  • No university, college, or preacher school sites.
  • No congregational sites (but a link to an included page with excellent writing would be fine).
  • No personal blogs (no kittens, babies, or breakfast posts).
  • Only blogs from within the Restoration Movement.
  • Only theological sort of things. It’s not enough that the author is a member of a Church of Christ if he’s writing about politics, welding, or gardening.
  • No vitriol. No blogs that are hateful toward Bush or Obama. (There are some very un-Christian things being said in the name of Christ. Please stop.)
  • No password protected sites.
  • No legalism.

These are posted without recommendation or endorsement.

I encourage you comment in favor of any site you enjoy below. Please, nothing critical here. (But do let me know if I’ve posted something outside the guidelines. I tried to check, but it’s a LOT of blogs.)





114 Responses to Progressive Church of Christ Blogs, E-Zines, Writings and Groups

  1. Donald Crane says:

    It would be an honor to have my sight considered for addition to the list.


  2. Jay Guin says:


    Very happy to add your blog to the list. May God bless many through your work.

  3. Jay:

    It would be an honor to be included on your site. My site is

    Blessings to you.

  4. Jay Guin says:


    Glad to add you to the list.

  5. Lee Daniels says:

    I recommend Bob Odle’s “Life in a New Millennium – reflections from a dazed sojourner”:
    Bob’s blog inspires and humbles me – he’s all about reverent, faithful, humble obedience to God – without the trappings of our heritage.

  6. Jay Guin says:


    Thanks. I’ve added Bob’s blog to the list.

  7. wjcsydney says:

    Jay, some of these no longer exist. Rex Boyles, Les Ferguson, Bobby Cohoon, A Better View…

  8. Jay Guin says:

    Thanks, Wendy. I’ve gone through and purged the dead blogs and corrected some changed URLs. Very much appreciated.

  9. Tyler Ellis says:

    I too would be honored to be included on the list:
    I’m a Campus Minister at the University of Delaware, on staff with Newark Church of Christ.

  10. Jay Guin says:


    I’ve added you to the site. Thanks for letting us know about your blog.

  11. Harold Vann says:

    Thank you so very much for the listing of Unity in Diversity by Carl Ketcherside. Since discovering him I have read many of his writings and have come to the conclusion we have missed the meaning of “The Gospel”. From there I reviewed the Matthew 25 description of the judgement scene and these two have changed my life. God knocked and finally I have let Him in.
    Thanks for your web page resource.

  12. Jay Guin says:


    I’m a big fan of Ketcherside. He’s one of the best writers the Restoration Movement has produced.

  13. Please take a look at and see if it meets your standards.

  14. How ’bout this one:
    The View From The West Mesa

  15. brothercm says:


    I would love for you to check my blog out and potentially post it. I’d also like to somehow link to yours…I’m not fluent in WordPress-ese 🙁

  16. Jay Guin says:


    I’ve added a link to your blog in my list of progressive blogs.

    PS — Go to Links in the WordPress administrative page. Create the links you want to post. Then go to Appearance/Widgets and drag a Links widget to the place you want the Blogroll to appear on your page.

    PPS — Check out my 30 Tips on Christian Blogging — from a very long time ago — /category/index/blogging-index/

  17. brothercm says:

    Great! Thank you, Jay. I’ll give it my best shot.

  18. keijo says:

    God bless you all in peaceful joy for us all in grace today and be used of the Lord are our thankgiving and praise and power to move whole heaven among us for Jesus blood case, thanks and bless and take toward revival right now for Christ,keijo sweden

  19. Jay Guin says:


    I’ve added you to the list. Thanks for letting me know about your blog.


    I’ve also purged a few blogs no longer active. If I purged someone in error, please let me know.

  20. Rusty Woods says:

    Jay, I’d love to be included in your list. I’m writing a good deal about shame and faith. This is certainly a component of works based churches many of us grew up in. Would love to connect with more people via your site. Thanks for all the great link and articles you’ve got posted!

    Mine is

  21. Jay Guin says:

    Rusty, Thanks for letting me know about your writing. It looks to me like you’re running two blogs at the same site, the rustywoods blog and the Shame Revolt blog, and so I’ve created two separate links. Let me know if I’ve misunderstood your intent.

  22. Hey, Jay. Can World Convention get on this list?

  23. Jay Guin says:


    I’m flattered that you’d ask, but it’s not a blog or even blog-ish. On the other hand, I’m taken with the Events page at (and frustrated that date and place of the next convention has apparently not yet been determined). I’m thinking that I’ll create a link at the top of every page pointing to your Events page. And that would be far better than being in the blogs list.

  24. Shell says:


    I’d love to be included in your blog list.

    Thank you for considering it.


  25. Jay Guin says:


    I’ve added your blog to the list but would like to include your last name if I may. I couldn’t find your name on the blog, and if you want to be anonymous, that’s alright.

  26. Philip sims says:

    I would be honored to have my feeble blog listed, In His service, phil sims

  27. I don’t know if this is what you’re looking for, but I write about church a lot. (Although, I have been known to throw a personal story in here and there.) 🙂

  28. Jay Guin says:

    Kaitlin, Thanks for the link. I’ve added you to the list.

  29. Jay Guin says:

    Philip, I’ve added you, as well — although I hesitated after reading the horrific pun “Phil Us Up!”

  30. Philip Sims says:


  31. Shell says:

    Thanks Jay! I emailed you today. It’s Michele Kellis.

  32. Jay Guin says:

    Thanks, Shell — the women are starting to catch up in the blog world.

  33. brunohughes says:

    Jay, please consider adding my humble blog to your roster, “Brennan’s Beating Heart: A Blog of Christian Spirituality” by Brennan T. Hughes. Several of the bloggers on your list can vouch for me, so I can provide references if needed. @brenhughes. Thanks!

  34. Jay Guin says:

    brunohughes, I’ve added your blog to the list. And thanks for giving me all the info needed to make the addition.

  35. brunohughes says:

    Thank you very much, Jay. The link on your list does not currently appear to be working, though.

  36. Jay Guin says:

    Bruno, Thanks for letting me know. It’s fixed. I think.

  37. brunohughes says:

    Thanks, Jay. You’re the best!

  38. Brian Casey says:

    Glad to have found this site. Would you please consider adding my blog to your good list? Brian Casey at Thank you.

  39. Jay Guin says:


    Very happy to oblige, despite my distaste for rutabagas, even occasional ones.

  40. Brian Casey says:

    Thanks so much for the consideration. Truth be told, I’m partial to blueberries and tomatoes, but rutabagas can be entertaining, if not informative to the palate. 🙂

  41. ozziepete says:

    Jay, thanks for your work here. I’d be appreciative if you’d add my blogs to your list. also


  42. Hey Jay. I think my blog was listed at one point. I’m not sure what happened, but I’m still writing (if infrequently). I’d appreciate being added to your list since I consider myself a “progressive restoration movement blogger.” My blog is here:

  43. Jay Guin says:


    Glad to restore your Restoration blog.

  44. Emily Thomas says:

    We would love to be included in your list.

    Crosspointe Church

  45. outwest says:

    Hi… I’m Brian Peacock, former ACU missions student and youth minister in Grand Junction, Colorado, and I have a blog that focuses on issues related theology, the Bible, and other issues related to Churches of Christ. I think it fits your criteria pretty well. Don’t have a ton of readers yet, but I’d love to be part of your list.

  46. Ray Downen says:

    I’m surprised to see Carl Ketcherside and Cecil Hook listed since both are deceased. I wonder if it’s accurate to list Al Maxey since what he’s now promoting is not Christian doctrine but rather is Baptist baptism of people who were saved by faith alone. It’s good to see many listed that I’ve not known of.

    My days seldom have more than 24 hours in them, and that’s not enough time to become acquainted with ALL the good writers and thinkers among us. I’m glad to know of Jay Guin. I first heard of Jay from a brother at a Tulsa Workshop several years ago. I now can recommend Jay Guin as a seeker after truth and a teacher of truth.

    I admired Carl Ketcherside. I like Leroy Garrett. Cecil Hook thought and taught wisely. I also recommend the CHRISTIAN STANDARD monthly publication as a promoter of truth, with frequent excellent articles on Bible topics. Did I mention that we are blessed to be able to listen to sermons on the internet by Rick Atchley at the Hills church in Ft. Worth, Texas?

    The e-mail discussion list I host is not a blog but includes frequent viewpoints by brothers/sisters in Christ. It’s Viewpoint Discussion List with some signing up for only once-a-week e-mails and others for all that are sent out. Anyone can join by sending an e-mail with the subject, “Subscribe Viewpoint Discussions” to [email protected].

  47. You might consider and for inclusion. I am a retired Church History professor associated with the Independent Christian Churches and Churches of Christ. My recent book A History of the American Restoration Movement is available on My blog is a conglomeration of insights about the directions taken by the independents although I’ve occasionally thrown in a few political comments and personal notes.

  48. Jay Guin says:


    Both links have been added. Happy to have you on the list.

  49. TY for your critique of Muscle and Shovel Jay. And also your book Do We Teach Another Gospel. They have helped me understand the CoC even more. I am not CoC but would like to recommend a Facebook group that is run by progressive CoC that allow all CoC’s and non-CoC’s to participate. And they have a good admin team that forbids personal attacks profusely.

    It’s an open public group called,,, Church of Christ – Open Discussion.

    It’ a really good group.

  50. Jay Guin says:


    Thanks for the recommendation. I’ve added them to the list.

  51. Dennis says:

    Hi. I’m a Disciples of Christ pastor in Minnesota. Is there a gathering of progressive CoC’s in this area? I’d like to talk to them. Thanks.

  52. Jay Guin says:


    Probably. It looks like you’re in the Minneapolis area. That’s a long way from my home, but maybe a reader or two can make a referral.

  53. Joe Butler says:

    I Would be humbled if you could take the time to read and consider my blog for your site.

    Joe Butler

  54. Jay Guin says:


    Happy to add to the list.

  55. Eddie says:

    Would you consider adding to the list?

    Thank you,

  56. Jay Guin says:


    Happy to do so.

  57. tpaulson1526 says:

    Jay, along with everyone else on here I’d love to be considered for the list. Here is my blog:


  58. Jay Guin says:


    Happy to add your blog to the list. Looks to be very interesting.

  59. Christopher says:


    A number of these links are obsolete or lead to dated sites (which haven’t been updated for years). If you’d like, I’ll tell you which these are (or, better, which are still working and current).

  60. Jay Guin says:


    That’s a very kind offer and I’d appreciate the help.

  61. Christopher says:

    Here you are, Jay. The sites marked with asterisks have been updated at least once in the past year. I think it would be helpful to introduce a key for this list, so readers can obtain a better idea of what sort of site each link leads to. Maybe something like this:

    $ = items may be purchased at this site
    © = contains published books and/or articles of author
    & = reader comments allowed
    ! = reader comments not allowed
    @ = contains links to other sites
    # = accessible from Facebook or Twitter or Google


    Adam Berman (no content)
    Al Maxey (not a blog but a commercial website with some content)
    Alan Rouse (an old link leading to newer site that hasn’t been updated since 2011)
    Allan Stanglin*
    Amanda Sanders (obsolete link)
    Answering the Church of Christ (last update was 2009)
    Bob Odle (last update was 2013)
    Bobby & Tammie Ross*
    Bobby Valentine*
    Brad Stanford*
    Brian Casey*
    Brian Nicklaus*
    Bryant Evans*
    Carl Ketcherside (not a blog but a collection of author’s writings)
    Cecil Hook (obsolete link)
    Chris Guin (last update was 2012)
    Christopher Cotton*
    Cody, Brother*
    Curtis McClane*
    Dallas Burdette (not a blog but a collection of author’s writings)
    Danny Dodd*
    Danny Gill (last update was 2014)
    Darin (last update was 2013)
    David Ross*
    Dell Kimberly (last update was 2014)
    Donald Crane*
    Doug Mendenhall (last update was 2012)
    Douglas Jacoby (not a blog but a collection of author’s writings; commercial site with free Q&A and other content)
    Dwayne Phillips*
    Eddie Lawrence (not a blog but a collection of author’s writings)
    Edward Fudge (obsolete link – should be
    Frank Bellizzi*
    Fred Zumwalt*
    Kirkendall (last update was 2013)
    Grace Centered Magazine*
    J. James Albert (last update was 2012)
    James Brett Harrison*
    James Prather (last update was 2014)
    Janice Garrison*
    Jarrod Spencer (only one update since 2013)
    Jason Bybee*
    Jay Guin*
    Jerry Starling*
    Jim Martin*
    Jim McGuiggan*
    Joe Beam (not a blog but commercial marriage help website)
    John Dobbs*
    John Mark Hicks*
    John T. Willis*
    Josh Kellar*
    Josh Ross (last update was 2010)
    Joshua Graves*
    Joshua Pappas (obsolete link)
    Jonathan Woodall*
    Justin Brasfield*
    K. Rex Butts*
    Keith Brenton*
    Kevin Pendergrass*
    Kinney Mabry (last update was 2013)
    Kyle Strickland*
    Lane Widick*
    Larry James*
    Lee Camp (last update was 2012)
    Leroy Garrett (not a blog but a collection of author’s writings)
    Mac and Todd Deaver et alia (last update was 2019)
    Matt Dabbs* (an old link leading to newer site)
    Matthew Dowling*
    McGarvey Ice*
    Michael Hines*
    Michael Hines (not a blog but a resource site)
    Michele Kellis*
    Mike Cope*
    Nick Gill*
    Outrageous Campbellite (not a blog but a Campbell fan site)
    Paula Harrington*
    Philip Sims*
    Richard Oster (last update was 2014)
    Rogue Minister (last update was 2014)
    Royce Ogle*
    Rubel Shelly (not a blog but a collection of author’s writings)
    Rusty Woods*
    Sarah Stirman (last update was 2014)
    Scott Elliott*
    Sean Palmer*
    Shannon Spears*
    Steve Allison*
    Steven Hovater (obsolete link)
    Steven Sarff*
    Terry Rush*
    Thomas Paulson*
    Tim Archer*
    Trey Morgan*
    Tyler Ellis*
    Wade Hodges (last update was 2014)
    Wade Tannehill*
    Walter Surdacki*
    Warren Baldwin (last update was 2012)
    Wes Woodell (computer goods site)

  62. Jay Guin says:


    Your help is greatly appreciated. I’ve just updated the page with your help. Thanks!!

  63. Matt says:


    Why only blogs from within the ‘Restoration Movement’?



  64. Jay Guin says:


    When I first posted this nearly 10 years ago, countless blogs among Church of Christ authors had open-ended blogrolls. I was trying to create something not found elsewhere. And it proved surprisingly popular. Today, many other blogs have much broader lists. You might check out for a list of the 300 top Christian blogs. (The methodology of ranking blogs is suspect but it’s still a great list of blogs.)

    On a pragmatic level, the requirement to get listed here is pretty much to just ask. I’m not recommending these and obviously don’t read them all. If I opened it up to all comers, it would be too long to be of much use to the readers — and I’d have to exercise some discretion as to what gets listed — which I don’t have time to do.

  65. seedsowerjames says:

    Jay, I just recently discovered your site. I’ve bookmarked it as a reference I’ll use in my future study.
    Would you consider posting my site in the list? It’s
    Thanks brother.

  66. Jay Guin says:

    Happy to do so. Link has been added.

  67. Bonneebee says:


  68. Jay Guin says:


    Welcome to the blog. Please honor these two requests:

    1. You seem to be cutting and pasting materials from another blog or tract. Please give the source of your materials to avoid plagiarism.
    2. Don’t criticize materials you’ve not yet read. To be respectful of everyone’s time and energies, if you’re going to post at the Born of Water page, you should have already read Born of Water — and so you should engage the arguments made there. It’s a free download and not a hard read. I would welcome your thoughts. Not everyone here agrees with my book, but they are largely familiar with the arguments.

    PS — Where in the Bible does it say that we contact the blood of Jesus in baptism? I’m not aware that such a verse exists. See Al Maxey’s essay at

  69. Jay Guin says:


    Not presently, but the Romans series presently being posted is headed in that direction. And if you check the Table of Contents, you’ll see plenty of prior posts on the subject. It’s a broad category. If there’s a particular question you have, I might be able to point you to a post or two on that topic.

  70. ricksegrest says:

    I’d be interested in Podcast recommendations also. It seems most of the Christian podcasts I see out there are either Calvinist or Charismatic.

  71. Gene C says:

    What is a “Progressive” Church of Christ?
    I don’t recall reading of that term in the bible.

  72. Dwight says:

    Gene, The term “Progressive” stands right up there with “Conservative” and “Liberal” as a description term, except the term “liberal” is actually found in the scriptures, II Cor.9:13, but not in regards to a church, but to a Christian’s giving.
    If you look close enough you won’t see “church of Christ” in the scriptures either, as the word “church” is ekklesia and means “congregation” and there is only one place you will find “congregations( churches) of Christ” and it was not used as a name, but a description of people in Christ in many places. The word “church” didn’t come along until many hundreds of years later.
    If you will also look you will not find the word “trinity” in the scriptures.
    Also you will not find the word “communion” in regards to the whole of the Lord’s Supper, but rather it is individualized for each partaking of the bread and wine, as it is a verb. We thus do not partake of a communion, but communion is partaking of.

    My point is that usually when we make a statement similar to yours we are looking to kill the descriptive qualities due to a word search qualification. If we cannot find the word, then the concept must be wrong. Try looking for the word “pew” in the scriptures.

    Otherwise “progressive” means what it means, but it can also mean different things to different people, depending on if you are a progressive, a liberal or a conservative. But in general it means “happening or developing gradually or in stages”.

    I consider myself to be a “primitive” Christian meaning I see how they did things as the best way to do things, not by command, but by expression and efficiency.

    But in reality a Christian should not allow one word to define them as they should be progressive in learning and growing, liberal in giving and conservative in keeping to the commands of God.

    These are just my thoughts and I hail from the “conservative” branch of the coC.

  73. Larry Cheek says:

    Good explanation Dwight!

  74. Terry Purcell says:

    To Rick:

    To Gene C. It’s a descriptive label. Think Jay had a discussion on the label but not able to find it using the search function. To me, it means non-legalistic. Having been in both, the difference to me is the lens we use in reading and teaching the scriptures. In the legalistic church our works were for salvation, hoping to be saved, but never knowing for sure if we would be saved. in the progressive church we work because we are saved and know we are saved by blood of Jesus.

  75. Dwight says:

    Terry, this relationship between works and salvation in the conservative branch has come around to being more progressive. Now many conservative churches teach works don’t save and baptism is not a work.

  76. Terry Purcell says:

    Thanks Dwight, I hope that is the trend

    Here is the Progressive post I was looking for:

  77. Dwight says:

    One thing I find disappointing is the fact that within the conservative coC there is selective memory or perhaps no past memory.
    The coC still teaches that they only teach the word of God as stated by the word of God just as they had in the past. I heard this lesson that said this just last night.
    Even while admitting that they now collectively believe in grace and that works do not save and also that baptism is not a work, which was what they openly taught for many, many years.

    It appears that this wrong thinking on baptism wasn’t really “wrong”, just not proper thinking, and that despite not believing correctly about baptism (that it was a work) when you were baptized that you were still saved when you were baptized, even though the Baptist or others who thinks incorrectly about baptism when they are baptized are not saved, even though they are still baptized.

    It is good to progress towards right thinking, but bad when you do not hold yourself accountable for the wrong thinking you taught when you preached you were perfectly right in your doctrine.

  78. Gary says:

    Progressive is no longer an accurate or helpful adjective for Churches of Christ which have rejected such traditional CoC beliefs as instrumental music in congregational worship being sinful and either refusing membership to or restricting the privileges of unscripturally divorced and remarried Christians. CoC insiders understand these nuances but no one else in 2017 would. Progressive today connotes the acceptance and affirmation of LGBTQ persons and relationships as well as political beliefs and emphases more associated with the liberal side of the spectrum.

    From what I read in One in Jesus progressive Churches of Christ are really Evangelicals with an ever diminishing Stone-Campbell heritage. It’s hard to see any serious differences between progressive Churches of Christ and Evangelicalism. The liberal fringe of Churches of Christ in the 1950’s-1980’s that was represented best perhaps in the book Voices of Concern and the periodical Mission Journal had little overlap with 21st century progressive Churches of Christ. It is hard to imagine those who were associated with Mission Journal taking the conservative positions on social issues that seem to predominate on One in Jesus. I suspect that most 20th century CoC liberals who are still alive have long since emigrated to other Christian groups.

  79. Larry Cheek says:

    I really do not understand where in this blog you could find confirmation that this blog will accept your label. There might have been two or three commentors who promoted those lifestyles, but Jay nor the majority of the commentors promoted or accepted them. Sure we will accept those who conform to the instructions in the scriptures. Remember this message from Paul?
    1Co 6:9-11 ESV Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, (10) nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. (11) And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
    If you can verify that those whom you have described, LGBTQ persons, have become as Paul described in verse 11 we would be disobeying scriptures if we continued to not accept them. Paul’s words translates into, reformed from practicing those actions. We will accept just as quickly as Paul did. I thought in our previous discussions that you held yourself out from that body of people and accepted that those actions were a sin that God would not accept. You on the other hand held to the belief that because you and your mate had committed to a lifetime commitment, therefore your understanding was that God would not count your relationship as sinful upon the basis that God did not mean for man to be alone. You would be alone without this only soul mate that you could find upon the earth.

  80. Dwight says:

    Gary, the purpose of the “progressive” thinking is to get closer to God’s intent, from being legalistic to more grace based, without moving away from God’s will and words. Moving towards your goal of LGBTQ would be away from God’s will and would not be scripturally progressive, but regressive. But if being LGBTQ is progressive scripturally, then wouldn’t also allowing incest and bestiality even be more so, as long as they do them out of love?
    There is not one church that I know of, progressive or not, that wouldn’t follow I Cor.6:9-11, but only if they repent from those sins.
    Gary, you said, “I suspect that most 20th century CoC liberals who are still alive have long since emigrated to other Christian groups.”
    And while this might be true, this is also true of progressives and conservatives and yet most of those aren’t looking to integrate LGBTQ into their religion and go against God, but rather flee from the cold, impersonal settings in many churches to warmer, personal settings. This is why many smaller house churches are growing. These people though haven’t immigrated from God, which is what you are suggesting they do in accepting LGBTQ lifestyle.

  81. Gary says:

    Larry and Dwight, my point is that progressive is a misleading term in 2017 for Evangelical churches, including non-traditional Churches of Christ. The word progressive now connotes the acceptance and affirmation of LGBTQ persons and relationships as well as political beliefs and emphases more associated with the liberal side of the spectrum. So to continue to refer to Churches of Christ that are more or less Evangelical churches as “progressive” is neither accurate nor helpful for any but CoC insiders. These churches would be better served by finding a new and more accurate and helpful descriptive word.

  82. Larry Cheek says:

    Are you the one defining “progressive”? That is not what it means to us, and the term has been in use long before this movement that you are describing. Show us some of your sources.

  83. Gary says:

    If you read the Wikipedia article on Progressivism after a short history the author writes, “The term is now also often used as a shorthand for a more or less left-wing way of looking at the world.” The image of “progressive” Churches of Christ that one would have from One in Jesus is definitely not left-wing in the context of America in 2017. Progressive Churches of Christ May have rejected much of traditional Church of Christism but they are still quite conservative overall.

  84. Gary says:

    I would also recommend reading “The Way Forward for Progressives” by K. Sabeel Rahman that was published on November 2, 2016 in the periodical New Republic. It is available online. To read it is to realize how misleading it has become for non-traditional Churches of Christ to use the term progressive to describe themselves. It has become a misnomer.

  85. Larry Cheek says:

    Gary must believe that the vision of the governments, progressive or liberal in the world are overshadowing the church in the world. There are many names or identities that have different meanings within their settings. But, the church should not be viewed by the world with the same concepts that we are using within the church to place identities upon a different views which we have about the understandings of scriptures. If the world is viewing the inside of the church to judge what Christianity is about than the church is displaying the church in substitution to the Savior. Of course the world would rather look at any deficiencies within a Christians life or a group of Christians than to be directed to the scriptures and The Savior. Remember the world is in total opposition to God’s form of government.

  86. Mark says:

    Jay Guin – At DCH Rehab Pavilion, 2700 Hospital Dr.,Northport, AL 35476.
    Looks like our fearless blogger is out of ICU.

  87. Monty says:


    Great News! Thanks for sharing. Go Jay!

  88. Monty says:

    Larry and Dwight,

    I’m afraid that Gary is right concerning the definition for progressive theology. after doing a quick search there is no doubt that Progressive Theology is now defined as affirmation of LBGT lifestyles. While you guys know and I know what we mean when we refer to having progressive ideas vs. conservative ideas in the CofC it definitely means something else to those outside our perspective.

  89. Dwight says:

    Gary, I would suggest it best to let those who regard themselves as “progressive” to define what they mean by it.
    Things that are socially right are not usually scripturally right.
    The Temperance Movement of the early 1900’s demonized alcoholic drinks which then was thrust into the churches to where wine was then a sin to drink, even though they had not learned how to pasteurize it yet…so some moved to using water in the Lord’s Supper. And the irony is that the Temperance Movement didn’t start out to ban alcoholic drinks, but rather temper the drinking of them.
    Christianity was supposed to change people, not society, that is until the people themselves changed through the gospel, then the society would reflect them. In Acts 2 with thousands converted in Jerusalem, they created a society where they shared with one another, etc.
    But society didn’t move them to do this…living in Christ did.
    Society changing Christian is never a good thing.
    Being a Christian should be enough and a completion of a person.

    In a general sense progressive can mean anything, although usually it is left leaning, but there are times when people move so far left…they are extreme right. Take for instance all of the anti-fascism demonstrations that are shutting down discussion and free speech of the right…that basically is fascist in nature, when you want control over what others think and do. Then you can have a progression from right to left in the same way.
    But the term “progressive” simply means to “happening or developing gradually or in stages”.
    I know of some conservative churches that have moved more conservative, which would be a progression.

  90. Dwight says:

    I too looked up Progressive Theology and one of the other definitions was “Acceptance (although not necessarily validation) of people who have differing understandings of the concept of God, such as pantheism, deism, non-theism, as a social construct, or as community.”
    Again what society defines isn’t really what those that are in the middle of it define themselves as.
    From what I am reading this is a general definition of religion and not Christianity in specific.

  91. Gary says:

    A passage in Lewis Carroll’s book Alice in Wonderland is worth pondering. Humpty Dumpty says “When I use a word … it means just what I choose it to mean— neither more nor less.” Alice responds, “The question is whether you can make words mean so many different things.”

    In other words, if a group uses insider language to the point that many of them are not aware of the meaning of that language in the wider world then they will likely be misunderstood by outsiders as well as come to have a more distorted view of themselves. By the way, in the MMPI psychological test males who liked Alice in Wonderland as children are considered more likely to be gay.

  92. Dwight says:

    Garry, what we often have in the religious world is the changing of definitions to make something better or worse at the time of usage. The coC is not immune to this. The word “denomination” is an example, in that it is used to condemn others, even though the definition of denomination simply means to take on a name, which the coC does in being the coC. In reality their is no sin in being a denomination or even taking on the name of a man, as the children of God took on the name of Israel to become the Israelites and then each tribe took on the name of their respective “father”. And yet they all were followers of God and God didn’t condemn them for their names. He did condemn them all when they sought to separate themselves from God by not following God’s law.
    I actually loved Alice in Wonderland when growing up and find the MMPI test to be silly test in that regards and I am not gay.
    I believe much of this probably has to do with Dodgson’s, (Carroll’s real last name) supposed pedophilia and fascination with children, although much of these claims were made after he died and this would have been towards young girls and not young boys. Part of the myth has do to do with the fact that young girls, teenagers, were of marrying age, during his life time. There was a rumor of an affair with a governess and the Alice’s older sister, who would have been a teenager.
    The story of Alice in Wonderland is actually a political meandering of the social idiosyncrasies of England at that time.
    Going back to the term “progressive”. Nailing it down to one specific meaning is hard due to who uses it and why. It is like nailing down the term conservative and liberal. Those that claim to be liberal are liberal for sometimes different reasons than those who mark them liberal in a derogatory sense. There are those who call themselves conservative who are actually ultra-conservative according to the real conservatives, but consider who consider the conservatives liberal in their stance.
    This is why I think labeling should be avoided if possible, by others doing the labeling of themselves and of others, because they are deceptive and not necessarily true of the content.
    Scripturally, we will be judged by what say and what we do and how we live and not by what we say we do or by what we say we are.

  93. Gary says:

    Dwight, if you read the Wikipedia article on Progressive Christianity I think you’ll see why the term no longer fits non-traditional Churches of Christ.

  94. Larry Cheek says:

    So with all this meandering about definitions of a word, knowing where you place yourself in this discussion, what would you use as a label for your branch of Christianity?

  95. Dwight says:

    Perhaps the best label then is “Progressive, but not progressive enough for the LGBTQ” church.

  96. Larry Cheek says:

    If I used the Progressive Insurance Company to insure my vehicles, would others think I would be supporting a lifestyle, or maybe be a part of a lifestyle that the world is associating with the term progressive? I mean why did they pick that name for the company unless it fits the mold? Mold, even that word has multiple meanings.

  97. Gary says:

    Larry, to take your second question first, you’ll have to ask Flo. But your first question is a fair one. The expression of Christianity that I identify most strongly with now that I’m getting into senior citizen territory is being a disciple of Jesus in how I treat and relate to others. We all have a canon within the canon if we’re honest about it. Mine is the summary of what God requires of us in Micah, the Sermon on the Mount snd Matthew 25 (and I don’t buy for a minute the attempt by conservative Christians to limit Matthew 25 to other Christians.) If I had to boil my discipleship down to three things I can’t do any better than Micah. However imperfectly I am trying day by day to love kindness, to do justice and to walk humbly with my God. I believe I share Jesus most meaningfully when I treat others with kindness and justice. Regarding walking humbly with God I no longer think I have all the answers as I did as a younger man. I am at peace now that there is much about God and what God will do that I cannot now know or understand. That being said the promises of God are precious to me. So in God’s grace I hope to see the restoration of all things in the coming world where righteousness will dwell. That’s about all I can try for at this point in my life but I’m content that it’s enough.

  98. Larry Cheek says:

    I did Google progressive christianity and found where they talked about 8 rules or guidelines they adhere to, in the third there is a mention of all genders and identities. One may assume that they were not expressing any sin relating to those identities, but I did notice they did not place within that text (adulterers, adulteresses, rapists, those who practice bestiality, etc:) neither did they give any indication that those mentioned were not practicing other sexual sins listed in the scriptures. I did notice that the organization was created in 1994, was that before of after the term progressive began to being used to identify a reformation of understanding different from liberal or conservative? Then I remembered that Satan had begun his modification to churches long before, major change in about 325 A.D., since that time we will visibly see the effects of his teachings infiltrated into many churches representing themselves as The Body or Church belonging to Christ. As I see in your last comment you do not connect with any of the mainstream identities. Many followers of Christ have done just like you, we see some of them commenting here on the blog. They have removed themselves from the environments that have been created by organized religion, which has removed God/Christ from being their King and disguised the Creator and Son as the church, the world then visualizes the church as a representation of Godly values. Christians who represent God and Christ are almost like the underground servants during the great persecution, and which of those have the greatest impact upon the world? The Christians underground or the churches being controlled by the world governments?
    As I looked again at Matt 25 the summary appears to me to be a works environment. In The Parable of the Ten Virgins 1-13, The Parable of the Talents 14-30 and in The Final Judgment 31-46 all received their payment for their work. What did you with your “faith and belief”.
    I looked also into Micah and there only appears to be one verse that you could claim to rely upon that might be applicable to The Kingdom which came to be Christ’s bride.
    Mic 6:8 ESV He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
    But, this verse says nothing about The Savior who came to save those who have faith and believe in him. Besides these instructions were to the Israelites, not to you.

  99. Gary says:

    James 2:18, “I will show you my faith by my works….” I reject the false dichotomy between faith and works. Good works are what faith looks like.

  100. Gary says:

    Larry, I have by no means left organized religion. I’m a member of a Disciples of Christ congregation. Despite a century since Churches of Christ and Disciples of Christ diverged there are still many ties. Both the Minister and Associate Minister of my church have family members in Churches of Christ. The Associate Minister recently conducted a funeral in a Church of Christ. My ancestors were Disciples of Christ in an instrumental congregation before becoming a Capella in the 1920’s. So Disciples are not that much of a change for me. Part of my family was Southern Baptist growing up so instrumental music was never an issue for me. I still believe strongly in the importance of the local church.

  101. Dwight says:

    James 2:18 is a great verse that means what many don’t think it means. As you note faith and works, although they can be separate things are not in God’s eyes. It is easy though when people talk of works you don’t see faith involved and vice-versa. I know of many in the churches are works based in their religion in terms of not sinning, but they don’t do good, especially since they believe that local church should only do good to the saints, but not to others, even though they are right there in front of them needing help and money is being stocked away in the building, etc. I used to think that James was focused on works, but now I believe that James is focused on a working faith or faith that works, basically one united concept.
    Micah 4 is a good chapter that seems to talk about the coming of a New Kingdom.
    Micah 5:2-5 seems to talk about the coming of the Christ to Israel.
    So the Kingdom and the Christ is there, but the context is Israel, in blessings and judgments.
    Micah was a prophet for Israel.

    Gary, I don’t believe for a moment that leaving “organized” religion is leaving Christ. If you found people that met in a house, as they did in the NT, on Sunday and then met every day or sporadically, as long as you edified each other, you are fulfilling the purpose of Heb.10:22-25 and I Cor.11. If you can align with elders and deacons and/or have those internally, then even better. Church has possibly become to much of an highly structured organization depending on a few offices/workers and less organic in terms of love and support and worship between active saints.

  102. Gary says:

    Dwight, I basically agree with your understanding of James. On organized religion, however. If even two or three Christians begin meeting together on any regular basis for worship or study or prayer or mutual encouragement or edification then they are a part of organized religion. I can’t see how they would not be.

  103. Dwight says:

    Gary, here is another case of one term meaning different things to different people. There is people being organized and then there is people forming an organization, where it is no longer about the people, but about the system and organization. We often move between both concepts with the greatest of ease. Our preacher many months ago gave a lesson where he taught that the church is not an organization, but is people being organized, but then a few months later taught that we are the only organization that can teach the gospel. We are often not sure of our own definitions and change them at will.

  104. Larry Cheek says:

    When Jesus gave the instructions. Mar 16:15 ESV And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.
    There was not a church to do that work, he gave that instruction to individuals, the Eleven were to begin the work, those they taught were to carry it on to others. Yes, we can see examples of the church encouraging men to go but the church was never commanded to do that work or to oversee and finance that work. Nor was the church commanded to send missionaries out, Paul was not sent out by any organized church , but sometimes they supported him in his work.

  105. Dwight says:

    Larry, I agree. The local congregation was a family gathering of the family and for the family. It wasn’t meant to be a unit of doing things as that was what the people themselves did. The church didn’t evangelize, but might have shared in the evangelism by supporting those who did, but this was only because the people gave in benevolence to the needy and the evangelist were needy saints.
    We often read the verse “a worker is worthy of his wages” in 1 Tim.5:18 to argue for a preachers wage, but don’t read what that is referenced to in
    Matthew 10:7-12 “And as you go, preach, saying, `The kingdom of heaven is at hand. “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give. “Do not acquire gold, or silver, or copper for your money belts, or a bag for your journey, or even two coats, or sandals, or a staff; for the worker is worthy of his support. Now whatever city or town you enter, inquire who in it is worthy, and stay there till you go out. And when you go into a household, greet it. ”
    Luke 10:3-9 “Go; behold, I send you out as lambs in the midst of wolves.”Carry no money belt, no bag, no shoes; and greet no one on the way. “Whatever house you enter, first say, `Peace be to this house. “If a man of peace is there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you. “Stay in that house, eating and drinking what they give you; for the laborer is worthy of his wages. Do not keep moving from house to house. “Whatever city you enter and they receive you, eat what is set before you; and heal those in it who are sick, and say to them, `The kingdom of God has come near to you.”
    This is why when Peter was asked for alms from the man at the gate, he said, “Gold and silver have I none, but what I have I will give you.”
    Preachers were supported by the people in their preaching, not paid by the congregation to preach.
    We place more burden on the assembly than it should have and thus conflate much of the real work that is supposed to be done by the people. This is also relevant to worship. Saints shouldn’t go to assembly to worship, but they should go to assemble with worshippers. Saints should be a “living sacrifice” and worshippers or God 24-7.

  106. Larry Cheek says:

    I am beginning to have trouble obtaining the most recent comments. Home page opens up to May 24 post and the comments are synchronized with that date. I have never used rss feeds does that keep up with comments by date? If I click on that now it does return just one page of comments and they are all on our last dates of like may 24. What methods are others using to keep up to date on comments?

  107. Larry Cheek says:

    Ironically as soon as I posted the comments on the home page became synchronized by present date. I still do not see a way to move further back in the dates staying synchronized by latest date. Do you know of a method?

  108. Dwight says:

    No, I am having issues as well.

  109. Richard says:

    It would be an honour to considered for inclusion. Though my context is Canadian, I am entering my 10th year of blogging.With recent global shifts in 2017, I decided to pursue sharing my A Deacon’s Musing blog beyond my own denominational context. Thanks for curating this list and – should you feel this is a fit – that would be a blessing.

  110. Richard says:

    I guess sharing the link would be helpful too 🙂

  111. Lauren says:

    I think this blog would be an excellent addition to the list:
    It is probably 70% straight theology, 30% movie and art review (and usually those have a religious element). ​I think it would fit well with the other blogs here.

    Thank you for all your hard work in upkeeping this list, Jay!

Leave a Reply