My Reawakening:

I spent my youth and most of my adult life attending 2 evangelical/fundamental Presbyterian USA (PCUSA) Churches.
PCUSA is generally a liberal/progressive denomination, but there are many conservative/evangelical churches which are part pf PCUSA.
With a technical education in the sciences I was uncomfortable with many of the teachings.

I always had trouble with why the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) description of Jesus were written so late, Mark, the earliest was written around 70 AD, 40 years after Jesus had died.
All the paranormal things in the Bible didn't fit with the science I knew.

Many of the things I learned in 2 Conservative/Evangelical/Fundamentalist Presbyterian Churches I attended for most of my life are now questioned.
These churches were part of the PC USA denomination, largest Presbyterian denomination which was generally pretty liberal. Both have left PC USA and joined more conservative Presbyterian denominations over same-sex marriage and other social issues.
See PC USA Issues

I'm now in my 70's I've discovered several things that addressed my concerns.

  1. 1. Francis Collins, Director of the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) and director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for 14 years , was an evangelical Christian and said,
    He said,
    "One of the great tragedies of our time is this impression that has been created that science and religion have to be at war." - Francis Collins
    All evangelical Christians I know reject evolution as being incompatible with the bible. Most also reject Climate Change.
    Collins proposes a way of thinking about science and faith that sees each as complementary to the other.
    His best selling book "The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief"

    He wrote "The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief", 2006

  2. In 2022 Michael Gerson, evangelical Christion and former speechwriter for George W. Bush, said,
    There are many people who claim to be Christians in their political engagement. And one of the most basic principles of religious ethics is welcoming the stranger. I mean, how could this possibly be consistent with what we're seeing in Republican ideology right now?

    I think evangelicalism has a particular problem right now. I mean, they're the people who argued, many of whom leaders argued, that character counts during the Bill Clinton years, and now character apparently doesn't count at all.

    In a Washington Post Opinion column "Trump should fill Christians with rage. How come he doesn't?" Sept 1, 2022 .
    Gerson goes into detail about the inconsistency between Jesus and the conservative political movement.

  3. In my mid 70s the lenten book study in my church read "Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time: The Historical Jesus and the Heart of Contemporary Faith", Marcus J. Borg, 1995. which discussed the scholarly research which has been going on for over a century.
    I realized there were many biblical scholars who were struggling with some of the same issues I wsas having.
    It was a breath of fresh air.
    See Historical Jesus
On November 20, 2022 The Rev. Cody J. Sanders, Ph.D. Gave a video sermon at the Davis Community Churce which dradrew from the gospel of John to help us address the realities of grief with all of its ambiguity and complexity.

He uses the story of Lazarus resurrection in John 11:1 to talk about grief not the meaning of the resurrection itself.

He says many English translations say that Jesus was “deeply moved and troubled” at the tomb of Lazarus, the original Greek word "embrimáomai" actually means that he expressed “furious indignation.”

It was the day after the 3rd birthday of my Grandson and triggered in me a new way of interpreting resurrection.


>Rev. Cody J. Sanders, Ph.D.
Former Assistant Minister of Pastoral Care at Unitarian Universalist Church of Davis.
Pastor, Old Cambridge Baptist Church 
American Baptist Chaplain, Harvard University 
Advisor for LGBTQ+ Affairs, Office of Religious Spiritual & Ethical Life, MIT