My interest lies in reading the text from a traditional Quaker perspective, which stresses scripture as pointer to inward reality and asserts that the living Christ, not the scripture, is the “Word” of God ….
Analyzing the biblical resurrection testimony, I concluded that Jesus’ body probably corrupted in the earth some two thousand years ago, but I was able to affirm that my faith does not depend on an ancient miracle-story.
Will there be a “last judgment,” as described, for example, in Matthew 25? Probably not. But maybe Jesus was expressing a truth both timeless and urgent when he said that we who feast and play while the poor starve deserve unending torture. And maybe, as a George Fox can tell us, “nice” is the truly banal face of evil. But do we have ears to hear?
William Penn expressed the self-understanding of the early Quaker movement in the phrase “primitive Christianity revived.” Given the long history and wide prevalence of mainstream Christianity, it is understandable that we might misunderstand what the Friends meant by “primitive Christianity.” They were not speaking of a system, or proto-system, of doctrine, hierarchy, and cult. Rejecting…