• Can the Bible mean whatever we want it to mean?

      Thiselton, Anthony (Chester Academic Press, 2005-05-27)
      Thhis book discusses current debates about Biblical interpretations and textual meanings, as well as the impact of postmodern perspectives on Biblical interpretation and Christian theology.
    • Can there be theology after Darwin? The Dawkins delusion

      Greggs, Tom; University of Chester (2008-11-26)
      In a novel approach, Dr Greggs asserted that far from a foe to be combated, Dawkins’ thought was of significant benefit to theology in order to help theology recognise its true and proper object – the study of God. Comparing the use of Dawkins to the benefits theology found from engaging with Feuerbach, the lecture pointed to the need for Christian theology to carefully differentiate differing forms of knowledge, and for theology to understand its genuine role. Dr Greggs then went on to consider how theology must not (like Dawkins) confuse God with religion, and how Dawkins’ work mirrors much of 20th and 21st century theology in wishing to get rid of the deus ex machina or the ‘god of the gaps’. Where Greggs discovered a problem with Dawkins’ account, however, was with regards to its anti-pluralist intolerance, and the potential (a)theopolitical dimensions to his thinking.”
    • The category of “religion” in public classification: Charity registration of the Druid Network in England and Wales

      Owen, Suzanne; Taira, Teemu; University of Chester & Leeds Trinity University ; University of Turku (Brill, 2015-05-27)
      On 21 September 2010 the Druid Network was registered by the Charity Commission for England and Wales as a charity for the advancement of religion for public benefit. The decision document explores in detail whether it is possible to consider the Druid Network as ‘religious’ according to the charity law definition of religion. This chapter examines the decision itself as an example of how the category of ‘religion’ functions in public classification and extends it to the analysis of its significance for the field of Druidry in Britain. By extending the analysis to Druids themselves and to the media response, we investigate how the category of ‘religion’ functions in regulating, controlling and enabling different agencies.
    • Christ and evolution: Wonder and wisdom

      Deane-Drummond, Celia; University of Chester (SCM Press, 2009-02-18)
      This book is about Christian theology and evolution.
    • A Christian Case for Farmed Animal Welfare

      Adam, Margaret B.; Clough, David L.; Grumett, David; University of Chester; University of Chester; University of Edinburgh (MDPI, 2019-12-11)
      It is now common to blame Christianity for broader society’s general inattention to the needs and comfort of animals in general, and farmed animals in particular. This critique of Christianity claims that certain biblical themes and biblical passages form the foundation for an anti- animal position that Christianity has imposed on Christians and on wider Western society. This article concedes that Christianity has often been used to justify exploitation of animals, but argues that it is a mistake to consider Christianity inevitably opposed to concern for animals. After reviewing the views of critics such as Lynn White Jr., Peter Singer, and Tom Regan, the article demonstrates the complexity of interpreting biblical passages and the possibility of readings that affirm the importance of treating animals well. It shows that Christians have indeed been advocates animals, notably in relation to the first legislation against animal cruelty in the early nineteenth century and the formation of the RSPCA. Finally, it proposes a constructive framework for a Christian ethics of farmed animal welfare that could provide the basis for Christian action to reduce consumption of animals and shift to higher welfare sources.
    • Christian Salvations in a Multi-Faith World: Challenging the Cult of Normalcy

      Wayne Morris; University of Chester (Bloomsbury, 2015-08-27)
      This paper explores that alternative understandings of salvations from within Christianity may be useful for developing new forms of Christian praxes for a multi-faith world today, conscious that the future of the planet is largely dependent on respectful forms of human co-operation that were not necessarily observed in the past.
    • Christianity and the new social order: A manifesto for a fairer future

      Atherton, John; Baker, Chris; Reader, John; Manchester Cathedral ; University of Chester ; Diocese of Oxford (SPCK, 2011-09-15)
      This book examines the direction and political vision of Britain, within a framework of the ideas of William Beveridge and William Temple.
    • Christology, vindication, and martyrdom in the Gospel of Mark and the Apocalypse: Two New Testament views

      Middleton, Paul; University of Chester (T & T Clark, 2014-11-20)
      This book chapter discusses the persecution of early Christians and martyrdom in the Gospel of Mark and the Book of Revelation.
    • Claiming Barth for ethics: The last two decades

      Clough, David; Leyden, Michael; University of Chester (Brill, 2010-01-01)
      This article discusses various studies of Karl Barth's ethics written since 1990.
    • Confessional theology

      Greggs, Tom; University of Cambridge (2006)
    • Consuming Animal Creatures: The Christian Ethics of Eating Animals

      Clough, David; University of Chester (SAGE, 2016-10-20)
      This article argues that Christians have strong faith-based reasons to avoid consuming animal products derived from animals that have not been allowed to flourish as fellow creatures of God, and that Christians should avoid participating in systems that disallow such flourishing. It considers and refutes objections to addressing this as an issue of Christian ethics, before drawing on a developed theological understanding of animal life in to argue that the flourishing of fellow animal creatures is of ethical concern for Christians. Since the vast majority of animal products currently available for purchase are derived from farmed animals reared in modern intensive modes that fail to allow for their flourishing, and this practice is harmful for humans and the environment as well as farmed animals, the article argues that Christians should avoid consuming these products.
    • Convergence and Asymmetry: Observations on the Current State of Jewish-Christian Dialogue

      Vincent, Alana; University of Chester (Equinox, 2020-11-06)
      Drawing on a survey of forty-five statements on the status of Jewish- Christian dialogue, this article argues that the theme of convergence which underlies a substantial portion of this dialogue programme arises from an asymmetric power relationship, in which Christian institutions have been insufficiently attentive to the issue of Jewish self-understanding.
    • Creating Charisma Online: The Role of Digital Presence in the Formation of Religious Identity

      Tee, Caroline; University of Chester (Taylor & Francis, 2019-04-23)
      This article investigates the construction and transmission of charisma through online channels, and its role in the formation of religious identities. Mindful of Max Weber’s observation that charisma inhabits the relationship between a leader and their followers, I argue for a critical reappraisal of the theoretical model in light of the ubiquity in the 21st century of new, virtual forms of social encounter. I focus my analysis on the Christian creationist movement in the USA, and particularly on an influential leader called Ken Ham. Using digital ethnographic methods, I show how Ham constructs charisma online, and how a virtual community forms itself around his charismatic claims. I illustrate how this virtual community intersects with offline worlds, and suggest that the theme park attractions that Ham’s organisation runs (Creation Museum, Ark Encounter) are imbued with deflected charisma by virtue of their association with his online avatar.
    • Creation and Animals

      Clough, David; University of Chester (Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2017-07-27)
      The chapter discusses the implications of considering non-human animals and the wider creation in the context of atonement doctrine.
    • A daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition

      Dossett, Wendy; University of Chester (Wiley, 2017-02-02)
      Beliefs and emotions are commonly accepted features of spirituality, but spirituality also includes ‘disciplines’ and ‘practices’. While ‘professional’ language and the ‘spiritual’ practices of 12-Step may be framed differently, they are not substantively different discourses.
    • The demise of the Beothuk as a past still present

      Owen, Suzanne; University of Chester/Leeds Trinity University (Irish Society for the Academic Study of Religions, 2015-04-29)
      This article aims to investigate contemporary cultural representations of the Beothuk Indians in art, literature and museum displays in Newfoundland, Canada, focussing on ways these reimagine the past for the present, offering perspectives on contested histories, such as the circumstances leading to the demise of the Beothuk. Wiped out through the impact of colonialism, the Beothuk are the ‘absent other’ who continue to be remembered and made present through the creative arts, largely at the expense of other indigenous groups on the island. Rather than focussing on the ‘non-absent past’, according to Polish scholar Ewa Domańska, ‘instead we turn to a past that is somehow still present, that will not go away or, rather, that of which we cannot rid ourselves’ (2006, 346). Depictions of the last Beothuk are part of a cultural remembering where guilt and reconciliation are played out through media of the imagination.
    • Depicting the Divine: The Ambiguity of Exodus 3 in Exodus: Gods and Kings

      Collins, Matthew A.; University of Chester (Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2016-12-01)
      Ridley Scott’s Exodus: Gods and Kings offers a distinctly innovative approach to the perennial problem of how to depict the divine in film. This article first briefly considers some of the ways in which previous directors have grappled with the issue of depicting the divine, before assessing the effectiveness of Scott’s own ‘solution’, focusing in turn on questions of implied identity, tangibility, and character/imagery. In particular it is argued that, whether intentional or not, the ambiguity as to the specific identity of the divine character mirrors rather precisely an ambiguity present in the biblical text itself. Similarly, the manner in which the character is portrayed, while adopting and adhering to a number of modern tropes and keeping the door open to more naturalistic interpretations, likewise reflects (and indeed, can shed light upon) much that is in the textual tradition. Ultimately it is argued that Scott’s representation of the divine can be said to (perhaps unintentionally) reflect simultaneously both the most progressive and the most successfully ‘biblical’ depiction to date.
    • Development and environment: in dialogue with liberation theology

      Deane-Drummond, Celia (Blackwell, 1997-06)
      This article discusses the relationship between environmental issues and liberation theology and focuses on how liberation theology can contribute to the current debate over an inclusive enviromental theology.
    • Devotion and affliction in the time of cholera: ritual healing, identity and resistance among Bengali Muslims

      Ferrari, Fabrizio M.; University of Chester (Routledge, 2014-12-05)
      The chapter examines the worship of the cholera goddess Olā Bibi among Muslims of Bengal. Moving from an analysis of iconographic, mythical and ritual material, I investigate how Bengali Muslims have responded to the threat of cholera from early eighteenth century. The goddess has served as a catalyst to inform local identity and to challenge external agency in matter of disorder and social control. Yet while Bengali culture has facilitated a convergence of visions and programs in time of crisis (cholera epidemics and colonialism), the recent affirmation of militant Islamism has aggressively confronted indigenous healing practices thus causing major internal collisions in matter of community ethos, and a consequential loss of vernacular knowledge.
    • Dieting for Salvation: Becoming God by Weighing Less?

      Bacon, Hannah; University of Chester (Bloomsbury, 2015-12-17)
      This chapter argues that the historical legacy of suspicion towards the body, time and material existence forwarded in much classical theology also lurks behind contemporary cultural assumptions about weight. Drawing on the experiences of dieting women inside one UK secular commercial weight loss group this chapter argues that ancient theological understandings of salvation as a quest for perfection and hope for a future in which the body is reconditioned resurface in this secular context as women seek a similar future where their bodies do not take up so much space. Rendered theologically, salvation emerges as a spurious form of theosis as women’s efforts to remove their weight and freeze their bodies in time forge their bodies in the image of the phallic God. Attending mainly to the difficulties with such salvation narratives, the chapter ends by suggesting that a theological rooting of hope within the crucible of history has the potential to invest women’s present bodies with soteriological value.