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God Is Not a Christian, nor a Jew, Muslim, Hindu…

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Bishop Carlton Pearson

Nor an Astros fan, apparently, but that’s another matter entirely. While visiting my brother recently, I picked up this book from his desk and became immediately fascinated. Bishop Carlton Pearson is not your average snooze-in-the-pew-while-he’s-speaking-from-the-pulpit preacher. His views are controversial enough that he’s been drummed out of the Pentecostal church after many years of successful ministry. God Is Not contains samples of the theology that got him into trouble. Such topics as “Get the Hell Out of My Bible!” and “The Church as Drug Pusher” certainly do not endear him to many who adhere to a mainline stream of religious thought, especially when he draws the conclusion that the purpose of the institutional church isn’t to save anyone but perpetuate its own existence. Bishop Pearson is very loving toward and appreciative of the gay community, who he’s had the privilege of ministering to and being ministered by. There is a moving passage where he tells of having his feet washed in front of the congregation by a same-gender-loving female bishop. Bishop Pearson offers prescription for those who feel organized religion can still be saved, and fodder for those who think it’s beyond redemption. All in all, God Is Not is a provocative and challenging book. I highly recommend it. Now in paperback. Simon & Schuster (simonandschuster.com). —Review: Buddy Fricke

 

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