It’s pretty clear what Jesus was about. Love you neighbour (and if that’s not challenging enough, love your enemies) was at the top of his manifesto. So why do we find it so hard to follow his example? Professor of Psychology at Abilene University, Richard Beck, doesn’t think the issue is a lack of understanding. We know what we’re meant to do. Instead, Richard thinks the issue is a psychological one. And it’s to do with a misplaced psychology of disgust. Tune in for a truly fascinating conversation!

Interview starts at 6m 47s  

Image provided by Richard Beck. Used with permission.


Experimental Theology


Unclean: Meditations on Purity, Hospitality, and Mortality

Stranger God: Meeting Jesus in Disguise


“There’s something to offend us all in Jesus and sometimes we like to point out the parts of Jesus that offend our enemies, we like to quote those scriptures against them, but, you know, I just like to embrace those parts of Jesus that offend me.  I constantly want Jesus to unsettle me!”

“When I think of being contaminated by the world, I think of all the ways the world is tempting me to hate people.  So, social media is tempting me to hate people, cable news is tempting me to hate certain kinds of people, political discourse in the USA is tempting me to hate people, to see them as disposable, as trash.  My pursuit of purity and holiness is fighting a great spiritual battle with my social media feed.”


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  1. Richard said something about the way to move from an intellectual understanding of loving our neighbour, and overcoming our natural limbic response so we can actually do it, is “emotion spiritual formation practices”. What are they?

    • Hi Nic.
      That’s a very good question! I’ve been in touch with Richard and he’s going to be answering this question in his next book ‘Stranger God'(we’ll interview him on it when it comes out in November).
      In the mean time, he’s going to answer your question in a blog post for us. I’ll let you know when I upload it. Tim

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