As many blog members know, I left the Christian faith because of the problem I had with understanding why there could be so much suffering in the world if there was an all-powerful and truly-loving God in control of it.  I have sometimes received questions about that, and will deal with one of them soon in a separate post.   But before doing so I want to provide a bit of personal background.

In this post I want to make it clear that – as I’ve said a number of times on the blog before —  I did not leave the Christian faith because of my scholarship on the Bible or on the history of early Christianity.  On the contrary, virtually everything I know and think based on my scholarship on the Bible is known and thought by many, many biblical scholars, who continue to be committed Christians.  Including friends who serve as pastors of churches.  BUT, they are obviously not fundamentalists or evangelicals.  Far from it.  They moved on from that long ago, and have a historically-informed faith, not one driven by dogmatic interests..

Many of them had the same experience I had, as I acquired an increasingly deeper understanding of what the Bible actually is and where it came from.  That kind of scholarship did indeed lead me, reluctantly, to leave the evangelical form of the faith that I had held dear for many years.  That form of the faith involved an absolute commitment to the Bible as the infallible word of truth and to the teachings I had been taught that it taught.

I began to see, in fact, that many of those teachings are not at all …

Why we, and others, suffer is unusually important topic, for *all* of us.  Would you like to read more about how I see it, in relation to the Bible?  The rest of this post is for members of the blog but it is easy and inexpensive to join.  Your small membership fee goes to help those in need.  So why not join?