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Mailbag

Issue: "UK: Two faiths collide," July 22, 2000

Count him in

After reading "Count me in" (June 17), I am further inspired to be salt and light in a bland and dark world. I have been an "operator" in a chat room called "#Christian" for about six years. I have listened to and prayed with countless evangelical Christians: Christians struggling with homosexuality, non-Christian "Christians," haters of Christianity, atheists, Wiccans, uninformed purveyors of neutrality-every manner of worldview. Some operators view opposing viewpoints as a threat to the faith and routinely remove from the chat room those who continually disagree with them. But I feel that we are only light within the dark. I am glad that WORLD does not isolate itself but instead exposes the deprivation and sin in this world. As long as you have that "certain edginess," you can count me in. - Bryan Cass, Charlotte, Vt.

Life, not movies

I was at the Advanced Training Institute Conference Mr. Olasky mentioned in "Count me in" and I heard about his "controversial" comment. As for reporting on a sinful world, I say, "Amen." While with ATI in Russia, my team was accosted by beggars, proposed to by drunks, and had our pockets picked by the Mafia. We've witnessed sin in order to offer salvation because, after all, Christ did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance. But "cultural reporting" is another matter. Watching actors perform acts of violence, cruelty, and lust can only dull my compassion for victims of the real thing. But if I can reach out into real sin and offer the love of Christ, Mr. Olasky, count me in. - Angela Bayne, 18, Cookeville, Tenn.

Is that wrong?

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I am appalled by R. Albert Mohler Jr.'s review of Gregory A. Boyd's God of the Possible ("Does God give bad advice?" June 17). The NIV says that God "changes His mind" or repents some 35 times in the Old Testament. If these statements are metaphorical, as Mr. Mohler asserts, then what are these statements metaphors of? If they are "anthropomorphisms," what do they mean? Dr. Boyd argues the biblical statements mean what they say. Is that wrong? - John W. Frye, Rockford, Mich.

At its worst

Mr. Boyd's "openness of God" theology is an example of anthropomorphism at its worst. God is outside the created universe so that there is no conflict between God's omniscience and omnipotence and man's free will. The latter is exercised within the finite limits of time and space while the former exists wholly separate from the universe. - Sandy Kramer, Scottsdale, Ariz.

Unbiblical God?

Mr. Boyd's choice of making God more knowable to the common folk changes Him from being God to just a super-man. Taking a few verses literally, even though they then fall in contradiction with the rest of the Bible, leaves him with an unbiblical God. - Daniel Horton, Oceanside, Calif.

Bull's eye

"The opening of the American God" (June 17) is right on target. More and more people seem to disregard sin and the need for redemption. Thus, they don't show much reverence or fear of the Lord. - Michael Penn, Plano, Texas

Nothing effusive

I was disappointed by your coverage of openness theology. We supporters of the movement draw on many lines of classical theology instead of pulling this "new God" out of a postmodern hat; and we deal critically with postmodern philosophy and the question of anthropomorphism. I believe that the God who fulfills His plan despite the variations of human choices is far more powerful and more complex than Calvin's God could ever hope to be. There is nothing "emotional, effusive, or sentimental" in that sort of theology. - Rebecca Nelson, Boston, Mass.

Anti-intellectual

"The opening of the American God" is one of the most inaccurate, anti-intellectual articles I have read in a long time. - Sandra Nelson, Beaverton, Ore.

Carrying on

Cancel my subscription. You write about movies I don't want to see, music I don't want to listen to, and news that upsets me. No, wait-that's why I subscribed in the first place. Never mind. Carry on. - Doug Drysdale, McMinnville, Ore.

Not for kids

I don't like the cover photo of the starving Sudanese child ("Blue Nile blackout," June 10). It would have been OK inside, but I don't want my younger children seeing this photo. - James R. Ford, Merlin, Ore.

"My pray baby feel better?"

I have a 4-year-old son with autism and a language disorder. He picked up your magazine with the Sudanese child on the cover and said, "My pray baby feel better like me?" Then he bowed his head and struggled through a heartfelt prayer for this precious child. Even a child with a disability can see the truth about this tragedy. - Tanya Harper, Tustin Ranch, Calif.

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