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Author Larry Greenfield

Larry Greenfield retired on Dec. 31, 2018 as the executive director of the Parliament of the World's Religions. He served previously as executive minister of the American Baptist Churches of Metro Chicago, a regional judicatory of the American Baptist Churches U.S.A, and the theologian-in-residence for the Community Renewal Society.

Would Jesus tolerate Valentine’s Day? Human love only goes so far in approximating what perfect love is. We’re good at loving those who are close to us. For a holiday do-over, let’s extend God’s love, justice and peace to all. […] Read More

I’ve been a Baptist for all but 18 of the 870 months of my life. Those non-Baptist months were at the very beginning, ending when my parents abandoned the small Presbyterian church near our home and looked for the church with the best Christian education program for their long awaited and only child. The largest […] Read More

In a nation that cherishes choice, most of the time a decision between alternatives is made on a nonconsequential basis. It’s simply a matter of preference. Should I choose one brand over another? One store over another? One size over another? It really doesn’t matter, so I go with an inclination or what has become […] Read More

Rayfield Wright, the football hall of famer for the Dallas Cowboys from 1967-79, isn’t sure he’ll watch Super Bowl XLVIII this coming Sunday. If he chooses not to, I’ll join him – although for slightly different reasons. We both want to view it. To different degrees we both have been conditioned to want to watch. […] Read More

It’s difficult, in an exaggerated understatement, to envision “bearing fruit” when, to quote a secular hymn of the season, “the weather outside is frightful.” About the only thing that is being produced currently is an abundance of snow, as in, “let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.” And this year parts of the […] Read More

We have to assume, I think, that they didn’t come as a cohort – the Pharisees and Sadducees, that is. Just some, maybe only a few, of each group appeared out there in the wilderness of Judea, where John the Baptizer was dipping people in the Jordan River – those who heeded his call to […] Read More

When sessions of a legislature or court, at whatever level of government, open with prayer, what is really going on? To be clear, I’m a Baptist Christian and, therefore, oppose all public prayer in political settings universally. I’m also a proud citizen in a democracy in which the government, by definition, must not impose religion […] Read More

The Oxford English Dictionary defines “presumptuous” as “characterized by presumption in opinion or conduct; unduly confident or bold; arrogant; presuming; forward; impertinent.” If that doesn’t clear things up, you should read Jesus’ parable about the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16:19-31. The rich man dressed exquisitely and dined sumptuously every day while poor, sore-ridden […] Read More

The parable in Luke 15:8-10 has to be one of the shortest Jesus shared with his listeners. It’s the one about the woman who loses one of her 10 coins and scours her residence to find it. When the lost coin is found, she calls together her friends and neighbors and they celebrate the restoration […] Read More

It’s pretty typical for Americans to think we’re number one, especially when it comes to wealth. But we’re not. In terms of income per person, we rank behind Norway, Luxembourg, Singapore, Switzerland and Hong Kong. I suppose, still, that we can take some pride in being sixth. But using a different scale, we are, indeed, […] Read More