Something I’ve been thinking about over the course of the last few weeks is whether religion is the answer to our problems and to the question of God (some may say they are one and the same). In many ways I am sympathetic toward theologians who envision a religionless Christianity (be it through Bonhoeffer or Tillich’s concept of dynamics and form). In the spirit of genuine curiosity, what is your take on religion? Is it a necessary component or hindrance to the universal message of the gospel?

In order to fit in with the previous post’s theme, I thought I would mention something I’ve come across recently that is absolutely ridiculous to me. Following a recent message, a person came up to me and told me all about how he/she couldn’t stand Oprah because she doesn’t practice what she preaches or that she couldn’t care about the poor because she owned three homes in different locales. The same was then said about Al Gore and his use of electricity. My frustration is with this idea that as long as the messenger falls short in some way, the message is no longer valid and is not binding or authoritative for me. If this were utilized in church, nobody would take any sermon to heart and nothing would ever get done. At what point must we forgive the concrete form in which the message takes shape and allow the message to break out of its inevitable inadequate embodiment?