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Can Liberal Christians Save the Church? A Humanist Approach to Contemporary Progressive Christian Theologies

Issue: Vol 21 No. 2 (2013)

Journal: Essays in the Philosophy of Humanism

Subject Areas: Philosophy

DOI: 10.1558/eph.v21i2.19


In contrast to many traditional theologies, today’s progressive theologies offer believers an attractive ethic that is humane, pacific, and Earth-centered. And when God is spoken of, he is generally portrayed as non-coercive, deeply invested in the well-being of all, and attentive to the cries of any who suffer. On the one hand, then, humanists have good reason to celebrate this recent shift in thinking about the sacred and divine-human relations. Indeed, we share with progressive Christians a very similar set of core moral values. But, are progressive theologies really any more persuasive than earlier conceptions of the sacred? Do they offer better evidence for their claims? It is argued here that most all suffer from unresolved and rather serious epistemic issues that ultimately undermine their plausibility – and, therefore, their future viability.

Author: James A.. Metzger

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