Getting Slammed by The Christian Century

In a blogging first, I was cited on The Christian Century’s blog as "the most troubling" among several bloggers who commented on Amy-Jill Levine’s December 26 article, "Misusing Jesus: How the Church Divorces Jesus from Judaism" (about which I blogged here).  This is the closest I’ve gotten to being called out since the seventh grade.  I responded to Jason Bayesse, the Christian Century editor who applied the tough critique over at his post, Blogstorm on Levine.

The experience of writing a strongly-worded critique of a Jewish scholar of New Testament and getting slammed for it makes me wonder, again, about this whole enterprise of blogging.  A few weeks ago I wrote in a post entitled Being Known,

At times my sincere ponderings can wander into the realm of the
blasphemous, unorthodox, unconventional, inconsistent, unpopular or
just silly.  I wouldn’t characterize my writings as reckless – far from
it – but they are not burdened by a great concern for what is
"appropriate" either.  This blog contains some of my raw, honest,
conflicted and unrefined thoughts, a journal that just happens to be
open for the world to read, a proving grounds for theories and ideas,
an open invitation for others to enter into the confusion and
convictions of my head and heart.  This blog isn’t intended as church
newsletter or pulpit material, folks.

That is, my blog is where I explore thoughts and ideas about faith and much more.  Absent the luxury of an academic community or the time to get together with semi-intelligent drinking buddies, the blog is my only chance to be in conversation with a diverse group of people who are largely much smarter than I.  Yet, though I see this blog as a somewhat personal forum – this is a blog, after all, with comments and virtual conversation and otherwise personal musings – it can understandably be seen by others as something more serious and meriting more scrutiny.  Afterall, millions of people could potentially visit my site and read my writings.  Perhaps I owe it to them to be more careful about what I say.  Perhaps.

But for my few dozen regular visitors, I hope you read my unrefined thoughts, emerging ideas, and honest questions as the heart-felt searchings of a faithful sinner wrestling with life and faith and family and politics and, yes, baseball.  An isolated sentence from one of my blog posts might look bad when quoted on another’s blog, but in this enterprise of personal blogging (as opposed to the professional, for-profit blogging of many opinion makers out there) each sentence and each post makes most sense when read as part of a nearly two year-long string of unrefined thoughts, questions, reflections and experiences.

Thanks for reading, for sharing your comments, for agreeing and disagreeing, for challenging and for encouraging, for walking alongside me and leading in front of me.  I am blessed to walk this journey with you.

Published by Chris Duckworth

Spouse. Parent. Lutheran Pastor. Veteran. Jedi. Political Junkie. Baseball Fan.

2 thoughts on “Getting Slammed by The Christian Century

  1. I totally missed this whole thing yesterday. I do think you nicely stood your ground, however, while acknowledging the possibility that you could have been wrong.

  2. Bloggin is weird. I mentioned something to one of my professors recently to which he replied “I know, I read your blog” which threw me for a loop.
    I try and see my blog as not only a creative outlet for myself, but as a ministry to the few other weird CHristians like me who may feel that they are th eonly ones out there. People read my blog and either are offended, or relieved.
    Keep up what you do because you’re ministering to people without even knowing it. For the others, screw ’em, there are plenty of other blogs out there for them to read.

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