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by Bil Aulenbach

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“One Minute After You Die”

I was on my way to my spin class when I saw a pamphlet entitled “One Minute after You Die” on the ground. I picked it up and read it. Yikes!

It promised that one minute after I die, I’ll “either be enjoying a personal welcome from Christ or catching [my] first glimpse of gloom as [I] have never known it.”

Reality says that one minute after I die, I will start to decompose, and nobody will welcome me to the afterlife.… Read more >

This Stinketh, and Jesus Must Be Weeping

John 11 tells the story of Lazarus’s death and resurrection. In the King James Version (KJV), John 11:39 says that Lazarus had been dead for four days when Jesus visited his tomb and that “he stinketh.” John 11:35, the shortest verse in the King James translation, reads, “Jesus wept.”

Annie and I usually eat dinner in front of the television and watch the PBS NewsHour.… Read more >

Was Jesus Trilingual?

Jesus is one of the best-known names on earth, though we don’t know much about him other than he was Jewish, he was born in Galilee, he was an itinerant preacher who was crucified as a criminal, and his message changed the course of civilization. When trying to figure out who the real Jesus was, one often has to compare information from the Gospels and history and then draw conclusions.… Read more >

Evolving

This is the story of my life—and yours too, I hope. We are constantly evolving, if we allow ourselves to. Many don’t.

In my lifetime, I suspect civilization has evolved more than in any other era of history. Most folks don’t think they are evolving, it just happens—but we have come a long way from the Neanderthal.… Read more >

I Hate This Country!

Sorry. My parents taught me to never say the word hate—it’s mean and a cry for attention. I can almost hear my mom shouting from her urn, “Bil, I told you to never use ‘hate’ again!” Sorry, Mom! But the direction this country is going pains me. I constantly feel hopeless.… Read more >

Do You Really Want To?

John 5:1–18 recounts the story of Jesus healing a man at the pool of Bethesda.” I reviewed it the other day, and suddenly a light bulb turned on in my mind.

Don’t forget: Not one story in the Gospel of John is literally true. John is full of figurative truths, metaphors, and gross exaggerations but light on details, which leads to much speculation.… Read more >

Happy Baloney Day—January 6

Happy what? Baloney Day? January 6?

January 6 is really the feast day of the Epiphany, when the church celebrates the Magi bringing gifts to the infant Jesus in Bethlehem.

This story is found in the Gospel of Matthew 2:1–12. It first appeared nine decades after Jesus was born. This tale was never intended to give accurate information about the birth of Jesus.… Read more >

I’d Flunk Out of Seminary Today: Part 6

This is the final part of a six-part series about an imaginary journey to an Episcopal seminary where I ask hard questions about Christianity and priesthood. Without twenty-first-century answers, I may have to drop out. You can find Part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 3 here, Part 4 here, and Part 5 here.Read more >

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