Same Blogger, Similar Message, but With a Refined Emphasis (or, why I’ve decided to change my tune a little)

Pastor Paul J Bern
Apr 21 · 5 min read

Announcing the Social Gospel Blog by Rev. Paul J. Bern: the Evolution of the Message

As the title says, I wish to announce the initializing of my new blog, “The Social Gospel Blog” (or Vlog on Patreon.com, video’s will be forthcoming). This new blog replaces both of my old ones, “The 99% Blog” and, “The Progressive Christian Blog”. Under my former setup, the Progressive Christian blog was aimed at Christian believers who aren’t necessarily conservatives (and there’s a lot of believers like that). The 99% Blog had a more secular overtone. This was in order to invite nonbelievers, agnostics and even atheists to read what I have to say as well as how I say it. Both blogs had the same content, but with slightly different titles, different graphics, and often using different keywords in their tagging and categorization since they were aimed at different audiences.

But I also have a rich prayer life, and I’m telling you truthfully that God is having me to change the emphasis of this ministry. Not the direction, you understand, just the emphasis — specifically, the removal of Progressive politics from my blogs, which formerly had been prominent. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not turning into a conservative war hawk either — no way, in fact. Those of you who have been reading my blogs know that I am very much anti-war, and that part pf me will likely never change. Inspired by the example and legacy of Rev. Dr. ML King, I too am very much a proponent of nonviolence, excluding matters where self-defense becomes necessary.

While I have plenty of respect for my conservative readers — I wouldn’t add this paragraph if I didn’t — many of them seem to want to blend their politics with their faith. First, let me say that for those of you who do, so long as you feel no conviction by blending faith and your political convictions, or so long as your politics do not become a distraction to your faith, then by all means continue. It’s the war hawks, and especially the racists, that I disagree with completely. I remember growing up in a family that glorified war, especially when the “enemy” weren’t profiteering capitalists like themselves. And it was especially true if the “enemy” didn’t have white skin. So I have always had a distaste for that line of thinking.

So back in 2015, I started the 2 blogs I mentioned at the top of this article as a response to Christianity as it exists in many churches here in North America, which seems to have an ultraconservative slant to it that I was never comfortable with. But only recently, it has come to my attention that Progressive Christianity’s newest definition of itself includes those who no longer believe that Jesus rose from the dead on the morning of the third day of his burial. Do they think Jesus didn’t really raise Lazarus from the dead John’s gospel either? (John chapter 12, if you care to look that up) This is an heretical teaching if I ever heard one, and I’ve heard some crazy teaching coming from supposedly Christian denominational churches. So deeply concerned am I about this “new teaching”, which is grossly in error, that I have made the decision — again, after much prayer and meditation — to drop the name ‘progressive’ from this on-line ministry permanently. Even the website is going to be replaced, although that won’t happen immediately. When we read any of the four Gospels, we discover that Jesus was apolitical (“give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s”).

There will also be videos, something I have done a few of over the years, but I never had time to produce a lot of them because I was either tied up with my writing or shuffling back and forth for medical appointments. But I have recently obtained a new camcorder and microphone, and soon the videos will be flowing on Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/revpauljbern, and on You Tube at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3HP9J1ObPZdQ2WJEsR5X6A

As some of you know, I’m considered ‘disabled’ as far as my doctors and Social Security are concerned. I don’t work at a regular job, although I’d love to get a part time gig somewhere; I live on a very small disability check. Here in Atlanta, employers simply won’t hire older workers like myself, even though I have felt healthy enough to return to work for some time now. I do without a car because I can’t afford one right now, so I ride Atlanta’s public transit system — or Lyft as of late — to get around. But those who are able and who wish to help out can pledge one dollar per month as a follower on Patreon.com at the address listed above, or you may visit me at Medium.com at https://medium.com/@greatestservant62, where you can give me some “claps” if you like; they are located in the form of an icon in the left hand margin. I don’t get much for the digitized ‘applause’, but please give me 5 or 10 claps over there instead of the dollar on Patreon, if you prefer. It’s just that’s it’s a way for me to make a small part-time income without having to ask for a donation or a sale. I understand that a lot of people have no other way to patronize an artist, so this is an alternative for you.

I want to thank each and every one of you, my new as well as my longtime readers, for being here with me for all these years. With the exception of a few trolls, the feedback I have been getting from you all has been mostly positive. When all my followers on all the social media where this Web-based ministry and I have a presence are added up, they exceeded 11,100 as of the end of 2017. With the addition of accounts on MeWe, Booksie, Social Cross, Instagram plus the other two listed above, you can be sure these numbers are going to increase significantly throughout the rest of this year despite the demise of Google+. I look forward to continuing to grow our relationships together, as we grow our relationships with Christ, who is the only Thing that matters!

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