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Episode 523: Cultivating a Curious Faith with Lore Ferguson Wilbert


Two things are simultaneously true about America: More Americans than ever before are abandoning religion, and America remains the most devoutly Christian industrialized country in the world. Today's episode navigates this tension. First, a recent article by Helen Lewis says non-believers still have religious impulses that are now being expressed through political activism. Is Christian faith being replaced by Wokism on the left and Nationalism on the right?


Then, David French asks why our politics are so toxic and hateful if both parties are still dependent on devoutly Christian voters. What will it take for believers on both sides to put Christian virtue ahead of just winning elections? And Kaitlyn Schiess talks to Lore Ferguson Wilbert about her new book, “A Curious Faith: The Questions God Asks, We Ask, and We Wish Someone Would Ask Us.” She says too many Christian communities discourage curiosity while the Bible is “a permission slip to ask questions.” Plus, scientists are growing animals in artificial wombs without eggs or sperm. What could possibly go wrong?


Patreon Bonus - Getting Schooled by Kaitlyn Schiess: The Harrowing of Hell 101 - patreon.com/posts/70936439/


News Segment

0:00 - Intro

4:07 - What could possibly go wrong?

15:20 - Is social justice a new religion?

30:46 - Christian political ethics


Interview with Lore Ferguson Wilbert

"A Curious Faith: The Questions God Asks, We Ask, and We Wish Someone Would Ask Us" - https://amzn.to/3cngHVc

48:37 - Lore Ferguson Wilbert intro

50:02 - Why we struggle with questions

57:27 - Joy in questions

1:03:54 - Questions in Scripture

1:13:47 - Facing life's questions

1:20:09 - Jesus' humanity

1:25:50 - Credits


Other articles and resources mentioned:


"Synthetic embryos grown from stem cells don't need sperm or eggs" - https://newatlas.com/biology/synthetic-embryos-stem-cells


"How Social Justice Became a New Religion" by Helen Lewis (The Atlantic) - https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2022/08/social-justice-new-religion/671172/


"Christian Political Ethics Are Upside Down" by David French (The Dispatch) - https://frenchpress.thedispatch.com/p/christian-political-ethics-are-upside



"Overland to the Islands" poem by Denise Levertov - https://3quarksdaily.com/3quarksdaily/2011/03/saturday-poem-1-73.html


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23 Comments


Judah Burke
Judah Burke
Sep 06, 2022

The section on how political affiliation can be more tribal than religious affiliation was really interesting and reminded me of another topic I've been diving into recently: the India-Pakistan partition. Hindu, Islamic, Shiek, etc believers in Indian communities were growing together and finding ways to live together for over a thousand years, but one of the main ways that Britain hurt the culture was in how they applied political representation relevant to religious affiliation.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/06/29/the-great-divide-books-dalrymple

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About three minutes in, Christian says something like "It would be fascinating to have this conversation with people who consider themselves to be on the left, because if you tell them that they have sorted themselves into a religious community with the way that they think or comport themselves or the leaders that they listen to, I think you'd have a riot on your hands, because I just can't fathom that they'd see themselves that way."

I consider myself on the left. I'm a coastal atheist who lives in a liberal bubble and who, ironically, is in a religious community with people who think the way I do.


I frequent other liberal communities as well. I don't think I'd call…


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Enjoyed the podcast, as usual (my husband is a Patreon supporter). I have to say that our family has taken this idea to extremes by moving to a different state last year - MN to Indiana, actually about 30 mins away from Crawfordsville, where Christian Taylor was this week - to attend a church with whom we have some significant disagreements, so we will see how THAT plays out.

One important note – I do understand your “othering/demonizing” point being made through Christian’s analogy about women in a troubling marriage (1 in 3 women experience abuse from a spouse or boyfriend, so it’s likely a large percentage of these women’s marriages are more than “troubled”). But as a DV survivor…

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S R
S R
Aug 26, 2022

I'm so glad you had Lore on! She's one of my favourite Christian thinkers to follow on Instagram and her book (as well as Katelyn Beatty's as of last week) are on my list to read! I absolutely adore her mind.

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You stopped short of the best part of Jesus having experienced being forsaken by God. It is not just an incarnational understanding of us. It is because Jesus endured something we will NEVER experience because he did it for us. TBTG!

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