A few years ago I spoke at an ecumenical gathering of clergy, giving four talks on the Apostle Paul. I avoided anything controversial and tried to be very gracious in how I spoke. However, while I was up in my room, I overheard one of the conference participants outside flying into a fit of apoplectic rage as to why they were being forced to listen to talks about the apostle Paul. The person in question was ticked off to the max: “I didn’t come here to be force-fed hateful crap from Paul!” And that boys and girls is what happens when you talk about the apostle Paul in a mainline context: people get riled up!
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