I sat down with Thomas Jay Oord to talk about his new book God Can't: How to Believe in God and Love after Tragedy, Abuse, or Other Suffering. We talk about his proposal that it would contradict God's nature to stop evil and tragedy unilaterally, and how (pastorally) this is good news. We discuss evil, love, suffering, climate change, and – since this is Thomas’ third visit – I play the grand inquisitor and throw some curve ball questions his way. Watch on YouTube. Or, listen by subscribing to Love Rinse Repeat in your podcast app.Read More
Are Millennials killing the church?
In a special episode of Love Rinse Repeat, co-presented with Insights (the magazine of the Uniting Church in Australia’s Synod of New South Wales and the ACT) I spoke with Laura Jean Truman about Millenials (Gen Y) and the Church. We talk about her journey and work as a writer, itinerant chaplain, and bartender; before exploring the complicated relationship between Millenials and the Church. We go on to talk about ministry (inside and outside of church), community (inside and outside the church), and spiritual life (inside and outside the church). Laura Jean offers the helpful suggestion that the church must focus on enchantment and authenticity if it is to meet the needs of the contemporary world and Gen Y. Listen in iTunes // Watch on YouTubeRead More
I spoke with the Rev Lauren R.E. Larkin about our mutually favourite liturgical season, Advent. We discuss the power of the Christ child lying in the arms of an unclean woman, the way death and life overlap in the birth event, and the future horizon of Advent when Christ comes again (and its effect on ethics).
We also play a "Dear Abby" inspired game called "Dear Lauren", when the good Reverend answers peoples questions on how to live Advent lives in the midst of a busy Christmas season. And trust me, Lauren's answers will shock and inspire! Watch on YouTube. Listen in iTunesRead More
I interviewed Professor Christine Helmer about her work Theology and the End of Doctrine. We talk about how doctrine became a dirty word; that doctrine inhabits a dialectic of construction and surprise, time and eternity; the lure of eternity; why so many have got Schleiermacher wrong; she critiques the cultural-linguistic approach which situates doctrine as grammar of a worldview; and what contemporary doctrinal work excites her today. In the latter part of the interview we talk about her new book How Luther Became the Reformer – which explores partly, how Luther became a figure of German nationalism, a prescient conversation for our time. Listen in iTunes
“Doctrines point to eternal mysteries to be enjoyed and contemplated but never exhausted”
“The first rule is to read slowly”
I interviewed Rabbi Shai Held, author of the two-volume The Heart of Torah: Essays on the Weekly Torah Portion. We discuss the character of love in the Torah, the importance of human responsibility, finding theological gems in unexpected places, reading characters as archetypes, particularism and universalism in a pluralistic age, and Judaism’s greatest gamble… also, why we need an Isaac movie.Read More
"Theology does more than train people for ministry. It shapes the church's collective imagination."
I interviewed Geoff Thompson about his new book, A Genuinely Theological Church: Ministry, Theology, and the Uniting Church. We dive into his robust and dynamic definition of theology (looking especially at the role of imagination in theology, and how theology is marked by puzzling proclamations, unexpected tangents and strangeness), we discuss the novel and particular nature of Christian confession, the post-Christendom church, the missional vocation of theology, and much, much more. Listen in iTunesRead More
I sat down with Bonnie Kristian to talk about her new book A Flexible Faith: Rethinking What it Means to Follow Jesus Today. We talk about her own journey in discovering the flexibility within Christian doctrine, the incredible people from many varied Christian communities and traditions she interviewed in the book, her hopes for neigbourhood ecumenicism, and the importance of understanding and dialogue in the contemporary world. Listen in iTunes
"Following Jesus is a big, weird, amazing thing that individual believers, movements, and denominations have expressed in remarkably different ways over the centuries"Read More
I spoke with Austen Hartke, author of the new book: Transforming: the Bible and the Lives of Transgender Christians. It is a wonderful book, and this discussion gives a great insight into why it is so essential for our times. We talk about what it is like to write a book with helplines in the back, how conversations and the stories of others shape a theological work, what Biblical story Austen would turn into a movie, why the book centres on Biblical studies/exegesis, the connection of experience between Eunuchs in the ancient world and Transgender Christians today, the importance of the body in the New Testament, and a life lived beyond apologetics. Listen in iTunesRead More
I interviewed W. Travis McMaken about his book Our God Loves Justice: an introduction to Helmut Gollwitzer. We talk about the Gollwitzer movie Travis would pitch, Dialectical Theology, Socialism (this is a great section), Revolution, writing theology in an online community, and, we play a game of Conceptual Lightning Round... have you ever wanted tweetable definitions of Dialectical Theology, Socialism, the Kingdom of God, and non-objectifiability? We got you covered. Listen in iTunes
"There's something socialism fundamentally gets right"Read More
I sat down with Mark Gregory Karris to talk about his new book "Divine Echoes: Reconciling Prayer with the Uncontrolling Love of God". We discuss his reconstructed view of petitionary prayer based on his belief in an uncontrolling God of love. We talk about the issues with the status quo of petitionary prayer, the idea of conspiring prayer (as dialogue with God), and how all of this calls us into the work of justice and shalom. Listen in iTunesRead More
This is a double feature. The first interview is with Pastor Sandra Dumas, the second, her husband, Pastor William Dumas. They are the Senior Pastors of Ganggalah Church and leaders of Ganggalah Training Centre and Ganggalah Aboriginal Arts.
Pastor Sandra is the first Indigenous female pastor ordained in New South Wales through Australian Christian Churches and is carving new ground for Indigenous women within Australia. Pastor William is the chairman of the ACCNI (Australian Christian Churches National Indigenous Initiative). LISTEN IN iTUNES
"God's theology is to set people free" Ps. William DumasRead More
I recorded this interview with John Flett in Dec 2016 and it centres on John's most recent book, Apostolicity: the Ecumenical Question in World Christian Perspective. But we cover a lot! His book on Apostolicity (hint: we start with what that word means), how it shakes out in conversations regarding diversity of structural expressions in world Christianity, the difficulty/danger of perceiving the church as a culture (hint: colonisation), the US election, understanding properly the colonial period of mission (hint: its about the sending churches), non-missionary mission, how the ignoring of mission is actually a way of avoiding external critique, the voiceless Jesus of Christmas, the persistent focus on "dying churches" in the Australia and the counterpoint of migrant and multicultural churches.... are you getting the picture? We cover a lot. LISTEN IN iTUNES.
John will be in Sydney on Nov 3-5 talking about political populism and a theological response. You can join in person or online - check out the details hereRead More
In this interview (from January 2017) I talk with John Flett about theology and mission in the wake of Trump, populism in its current form, the way Christians just wanted to "win" and so refused to yield power, interdisciplinary approaches, mission studies, "racism and the evangelical vote", #WTFtheology (aka: John's proudest achievement), and how mission (a non-America-First understanding of mission) can help counter this growing nationalist, populist tide. - this was in the lead up to the first run of his course, Political Populism and a Theological Response, earlier this year at Pilgrim Theological College. LISTEN IN iTUNES
Now, on November 3-5 John Flett will be in Sydney leading a condensed version of this course. There are numerous ways to engage - attending the whole weekend, evening lectures, or the newly announced online access. MORE INFO AND PURCHASE TICKETS
"If you yourself are not ready to be converted, then you are not engaging in the discussion"Read More
"Taking what has been used as a sword, and turning it into a ploughshare"
A special episode. Because this postal survey on marriage equality is taking a toll on so many. This is Emmy Kegler's talk and Q&A from the Jesus 12 24 online conference hosted earlier in the year. If I sound weird its because I'd been awake for about 23 hours. See more about the conference at Jesus1224.com
"Too many members of the LGBTQ+ community know Scripture best as a weapon used against us. How do those of us who still find Jesus compelling reconcile ourselves with the book that tells his story, when that same book has been used to condemn us? When we have been wounded by the words of the Bible, can we still find healing in the Word of God?" LISTEN IN iTUNESRead More
David Congdon's excellent The God Who Saves: a Dogmatic Sketch came out almost a year ago. We talked about the book then, and today, in this episode we revisit the work. We talk about the book, its reception, the impact its made on David's life this last year. We also talk about the contemporary US context (and evangelicalism within that). LISTEN in iTunes
“I wrote the book for those wanderers, those exiles from the Christian tradition, who have been marginalised, oppressed, and abused by the church… yet are desperately in pursuit of some meaning and connection which would take them beyond themselves.”
It is also a written to say to Christians, "If you want to demonstrate your fidelity to Jesus Christ, you need to abandon the assumption that your church structure and traditions have exclusive grasp of the truth, and you need to ally yourself with those who have been marginalised by the church. Only that way, will you conform to Christ and live into the faith you're called to live into. In that way, its a call, to Christians, to put their Christianity at risk"
I sat down with Wil Gafney to talk about her new book Womanist Midrash: A Reintroduction to the Women of the Torah and the Throne. We discuss what drew her to the Hebrew Bible, play some conceptual lightning round, ask her which woman from her book needs a major motion picture, discuss translation, the future of Womanist biblical studies, what its like to write a Biblical commentary, how the Hebrew Bible emphasis on remembering can inform contemporary debates about monuments and history, and I introduce a new segment centred on Amazon reviews... we talk about a LOT, and its a whole bunch of fun. Listen in iTunesRead More
I interviewed Mark G. Brett, the Professor of Old Testament and Research Coordinator at Whitley College, part of the University of Divinity, to talk about his recent book POLITICAL TRAUMA & HEALING: BIBLICAL ETHICS FOR A POSTCOLONIAL WORLD.
We cover a lot! We do a conceptual rapid fire round, getting tweetable definitions for a host of complex terms. We talk about what postcolonialism offers conversations around secular democracy and human rights, we address the church, and its habit to fall into ethno-centrism, Mark explores how we begin to begin with Aboriginal voices, and the last 10 minutes is a can't miss discussion on economics and Biblical ethics! Listen in iTunesRead More
“Comedy can teach us to let go a little bit and think about things in a new way, allow God to change us so we’re not stuck in one setting. I do that specifically with race right now.”
I talked with comedian and actor Jonathan Braylock, cohost of the excellent Black Men Can't Jump (in Hollywood) Podcast. We discuss the podcast, diversity in Hollywood, trends and tropes in movies with Black leads. We also talk about his faith, comedy, and what a good laugh can teach the life of faith. And loads of other good stuff. Listen in iTunesRead More
How are we to be Christian in the face of white supremacy...
In the wake of Charlottesville this is a special "from the vault double feature". Two interviews from last year with Brandi Miller and Drew Hart talking a black Jesus in a white church/society. These are powerful interviews that can be great resources in the ongoing resistance to white supremacy in the church and culture. Listen in iTunesRead More
In this, our second episode, Liam is joined by Scott W Sunquist to talk about his book Explorations in Asian Christianity. We talk they why and how of studying Christian mission (including his excellent proposal of a cruciform and apostolic lens), discuss the multi-directional, complex, and fascinating story of the transmission of Christianity in Asia (spoiler: it's much more complex than East to West), a theology for mission and migration, the question of unity in World Christianity, what story from world Christian history would Scott turn into a movie... and so much more! Listen in iTunes
“Christianity was born at the borderland of two empires, and at the confluence of three continents”