Why should anyone listen to me? What are my qualifications, distinctions or justification to preach a different version of the gospel? When Jesus was asked what His authority was – His certification from God – He pointed to John the Baptist’s testimony and to His own miracles and good life and deeds – can I point to anyone or anything? Yes and no.
- I’m not a miracle worker or a Messiah.
- I’ve had little formal training as a theologian (if I had would that add much authority to my views anyway?)
But Yes because:
- It is in line with enlightened values to allow people to have and disseminate their opinion, especially where non-violence is an integral part of the message. I am asserting that people can listen to me and change their own opinions if they want to – not that they should do either.
- I admit that those with different opinions might be right. I also believe I can be wrong on some points without that necessarily completely negating other perspectives I offer.
- I myself have benefited from considering others’ views and in modifying my own repeatedly.
- I have worked hard at being open-minded and testing my own convictions without prejudice for more than three decades as a Christian.
- I haven’t come across anyone with precisely my combination of understandings – incorporating Girardian insights with a semi-conservative background, including belief in a young Earth & Biblical Universalism
- I believe that everything works together for good because God has made things that way, and
- I want to – and believe that in love I should – share the wonderful glimpses I have had of God and His ways, Whose ways will, I am confident, inevitably lead to a transformation of the whole world.