Last Sunday I referenced a few things in the service. First is Rev. Theodore Parker’s sermon: “The Transient and Permanent in Christianity.” (1841) While I concentrated on his assertion that if Jesus had been born in Athens, his words would still be true, Rev. Parker makes the point even more clearly with this paragraph:
“It is hard to see why the great truths of Christianity rest on the personal authority of Jesus, more than the axioms of geometry rest on the personal authority of Euclid, or Archimedes. The authority of Jesus, as of all teachers, one would naturally think, must rest on the truth of his words, and not their truth on his authority. “
The full text of his two-hour-long sermon is available at: https://archive.vcu.edu/english/engweb/transcendentalism/authors/parker/transient.html
To learn more about Parker (including his innovation of having flowers at the pulpit) see my friend Carl Gregg’s article in Patheos: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/carlgregg/2015/03/the-transient-and-the-permanent-in-christianity-theodore-parker-and-the-transcendentalist-revolt/
The Jesus of Athens “quotes” were based on a modern translation of the gospels “The Five Gospels,” by Funk, et al. https://www.amazon.com/Five-Gospels-Really-Search-Authentic/dp/006063040X
Next is Rita Nakashima Brock and Rebecca Parker’s book “Saving Paradise: How Christianity Traded Love of This World for Crucifixion and Empire.” Their book has its own website: https://savingparadise.net/ Go, explore, and order the book!
And last is Rev. Kate Braestrup, chaplain to the Maine Game Warden Service. Her book “Here if you need me: a true story” is available at Erie Public Library, including a version in large print and the audio book. (When it opens again!) Or listen to: https://onbeing.org/programs/kate-braestrup-a-presence-in-the-wild/