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Templeton Project: Flannery O’Connor’s “Push Back”

Back in October 2015 I wrote about the inauguration of the Abington Templeton Foundation (see here).  The project is now underway (see here) and I will be posting our writing here.

Check out the latest piece entitled “Flannery O’Connor’s ‘Push Back’.”

See also:

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Flannery O’Connor was a southern Catholic writer who has bequeathed to us wonderful short stories and two novels.  She has some good advice for Christians in this secular age.  “Push back against the age as hard as it pushes against you.  What people don’t realize is how much religion costs.  They think faith is a big electric blanket, when of course it is the cross.”

“Push back” may be a harsh metaphor when we Christians are striving for civil speech in a contentious, combative society.  But, let us not forget the  primary point that O’Connor is making.  We are to speak up on behalf of Christ–His redemptive sacrifice and wise teachings.  When we are conversing with a friend, talking in a group that has gathered for dinner or some such activity, or participating in a formal setting of discussion or debate, we are called on to defend the faith, no matter what the risk.  To follow Jesus is to carry a cross.

Having to make an apology, or defense, for many of us may be a frequent opportunity in our secular setting.  We must balance civil speech with a firm stand.  To be gentle and respectful does not mean to accede to falsehood.  We may be objects of ridicule and scorn.  No matter, we are to stand for the truth even unto persecution.

Our challenge in any dialogue may not only have to do with civility but also knowledge.  Do we have enough knowledge to feel adequate to the task?  We must also commit ourselves to study, especially of the Bible.

Next time we will discuss how Saint Paul comported himself before people in power.  To do this we will turn to the Acts of the Apostles.

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34 thoughts on “Templeton Project: Flannery O’Connor’s “Push Back”

  1. Pingback: Templeton Project: Saint Paul’s Civility | judicialsupport

  2. Pingback: Templeton Project: Unbelievers | judicialsupport

  3. Pingback: Templeton Project: Christ, Culture, and Christians | judicialsupport

  4. Pingback: Templeton Project: Jesus and His Opponents in the Gospel according to Saint Matthew | judicialsupport

  5. Pingback: Templeton Project: The Holy Spirit as Apologist | judicialsupport

  6. Pingback: On Listening to God and One Another | judicialsupport

  7. Pingback: Deep Conviction and Commitment | judicialsupport

  8. Pingback: Templeton Project: Questions Unbelievers (especially Atheists) May Ask in Dialogue | judicialsupport

  9. Pingback: Templeton Project: Waning Faith and Yearning Heart | judicialsupport

  10. Pingback: Templeton Project: The Apostle on Mars Hill (Areopagus) | judicialsupport

  11. Pingback: Templeton Project: A Fire, a World of Unrighteousness | judicialsupport

  12. Pingback: Templeton Project: Civil Blood Makes Civil Hands Unclean | judicialsupport

  13. Pingback: Templeton Project: Examples of Uncivil and Civil Speech | judicialsupport

  14. Pingback: Templeton Project: Of Self-control | judicialsupport

  15. Pingback: Templeton Project: Humor in Dialogue | judicialsupport

  16. Pingback: Templeton Project: Utopian Dreams | judicialsupport

  17. Pingback: Templeton Project: Do we understand each other? | judicialsupport

  18. Pingback: Templeton Project: When We Differ | judicialsupport

  19. Pingback: Templeton Project: Dialogue and Personality | judicialsupport

  20. Pingback: Templeton Project: Of Anger | judicialsupport

  21. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship and Apologetics | judicialsupport

  22. Pingback: Templeton Project: Nurturing Christian Disciples | judicialsupport

  23. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics I | judicialsupport

  24. Pingback: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics II–Wise as Serpents and Innocent as Doves | judicialsupport

  25. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics III–Endurance | judicialsupport

  26. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship and Apologetics IV–Family Conflict | judicialsupport

  27. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics V–Doing the Will of the Father as Peacemakers | judicialsupport

  28. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics XII–The Tree is Known by Its Fruit | judicialsupport

  29. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics VI–A Sword, Not Peace | judicialsupport

  30. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics VII–Repentance and the Forgiveness of Sins | judicialsupport

  31. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics VIII–Mission to the Gentiles | judicialsupport

  32. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics IX–The Parable of the Sower | judicialsupport

  33. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics X–“Fear not, do not be afraid” | judicialsupport

  34. Pingback: Templeton Project: Discipleship in Matthew and Apologetics XI–“Come to me, . . . and I will give you rest” | judicialsupport

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