I dropped by The Reverend Chuck Currie’s blog to see what The Reverend Chuck Currie had to say. Because, after all, The Reverend Chuck Currie is a reverend. You can tell, because it says so in his blog title.
He is a leader in the United Church of Christ denomination, a group that is apparently not too keen on sound doctrine. This guy just got ordained and he is continuing to preach heresies.
Oddly, his sermon on John 14:6 (Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”) was on a single verse, and his key points were to claim that Jesus was not the only way to the Father, that other religions such as Islam should inform our view of the Gospel, and that the Bible is not accurate or reliable. I downloaded the sermon and quoted a few parts below.
Got that? You are sitting in a United Church of Christ building ready to hear a lesson from the Word of God, only to have the “Reverend” tell you that the Bible is not the Word of God and that Jesus is not the only way to salvation. You can trust what other religions teach you because God apparently revealed himself accurately in them, but He did not reveal himself properly in the Bible. And this guy just graduated from a “Christian” seminary and now has a PhD in Theology from a Cracker Jack box or something. Check.
Here are some excerpts from his message:
Is John 14:16 (sic) the literal word of God or is it a human reflection that speaks to how the early Christian community understood their faith?
Biblical scholars in mainline seminaries agree that Jesus never spoke the words attributed to him in our reading from this morning.
Looks like someone went scholar-shopping and found just what he was looking for. And don’t you love the patronizing bit about those deluded early Christians who gave their lives for the faith but were just imagining that Jesus really said those things?
The Gospel of John was written some 100 years after the death of Jesus and in no other writing is Jesus said to have made such exclusive claims about the faith. So why after 100 many years have passed since the his death would someone remember things so differently – so starkly differently.
First, the dating for the Gospel of John is much earlier than 100 years after the death of Jesus. Chuck has been corrected on this point but he ignores it.
He also ignores that there are 100 passages stating that Jesus is the only way. He pretends that John 14:6 is the only Bible verse making this claim. He has also determined that the gnostic Gospel of Thomas is more authoritative than the Gospel of John – even though the early church did not even hint at holding that view.
It might be better to read this passage as a statement of faith from the early Christian community, who believed with conviction that Jesus was the way, the truth and the life. I share that conviction today.
No, he doesn’t. If he really thought Jesus was the way then he wouldn’t stand in a pulpit and spread these lies.
But I’m not so arrogant to think that my own understanding of God surprasses all other understandings of God . . . Is it possible that God speaks through Judaism, Islam, Hinduism and the world’s other great religions?
Ah, there’s the passive-aggresive tolerance trick. The reverend dogmatically states that Jesus is not the only way, that the Gospel of John was written 100 years after Jesus’ death and contains falsehoods, the Gospel of Thomas is authoritative, the Bible is not, etc. But he’s not going to be arrogant like those who don’t hold those views! How humble.
And no, God does not speak through other world religions. They may contain some truths but that doesn’t mean they are from God. If you took even 10% of the Bible seriously you would never make that claim. Religious pluralism is intellectually bankrupt.
Let us resolve as members of the Christian faith to be open to hearing God speak through other voices, and as we preach the Gospel message let our hearts welcome new insights about God from other faithful traditions.
What kind of nonsense is that? He says we are supposed to preach the Gospel, but we’re supposed to let other faithful traditions inform our views. Huh? What Gospel is that? What is the standard of truth now that he has tossed out the Bible?
I would encourage the reverend to meditate on this verse, except that he has probably eliminated from his slim-line Bible already:
Galatians 1:8-9 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned! As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!
I say with complete confidence that the gospel (small “g”) that The Reverend Chuck Currie preaches is radically different than the one the Apostle Paul was referring to.
“Reverends” like this mock the cross and the blood of the martyrs. I am glad we live in a country where people have the freedom to preach whatever they like. We even have a name for people who hold these views: Non-Christians.