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[+] The Good Book
Posted: Thu Jan 06, 2005 8:37 am
Sam
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Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 41




What are your thoughts on the Bible? Is it a treaure map, a book of God, a history or science book, a wonderful narative of old dudes long ago? Is it the complete revelation of God, a great suggestion, a moral textbook, an outdated artifact? Is it inspired, old, useless, beautiful, magical, mysterious, divine, prejudiced? Is it a tool, a weapon, a guide, a hymn, a poem, a geneology?

I will start the discussion not with my own opinion, but with that of a wise theologian, www.reallivepreacher.com:

"There's Something About the Way You Use the Bible"

Quote:
There’s something about the way you use the bible, something about the way you use it as a tool, as a weapon, as a fulcrum, as a means, as an end, as a trump card.

There’s something about the way you see the bible as a thing to be used at all.

There’s something about your intensity and your urgency and the way you have your eyes locked on some distant prize. There’s something about the energy you are putting into this. It’s making you frantic and in a hurry. You will not be present in a sacred moment. You will not wait. You will not keep silence. You will not admit that you are weak. You will not let things unfold.

You cannot abide, so you will not abide. You will not abide the journey. Arriving is all you want, and the bible is some kind of shortcut for you. You seem to be cutting corners and covering your tracks with memorized verses. You enter every room with a blast of pretty Jesus words and a lot of fast talking.

Somehow you have come to think that the bible is like everything else in your life. You think it is something to master and something you can own. The more you know about the bible, the more power you hope to gain. The more verses you can quote, the closer to God you hope to be.

The bible is your prop and your flag. You wave it around and make sure that it is seen. You highlight it and talk about it and make wild claims about its truth and fight over it and win with it and boast about how you believe every word of it. It is your way and your truth and your life.

Behold, your sacred battle cry: “The Word of the Lord is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing until it divides soul from spirit, joints from marrow; it is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart."

But that verse isn’t about the bible. It’s about Christ, whom you serve, and whose spirit you are called to carry in your heart. It is only He who is your way and your truth and your life.

That old man that you brushed aside? The one you called a liberal and a wishy-washy Christian? He spent the last fifty years with his hands and his heart in the pages of that sacred book. He has wept over it and searched for truth in its stories. His unanswered questions have increased every year until finally he knows nothing at all but the love of God and neighbor.

He knows something that you do not know.

Those people around the table? The ones you spoke so harshly to that night when you came upon them sharing a meal and pleasant conversation at church? You told them it was a shame when Christians gathered only to eat and talk. You dropped your big black bible on the table with a thud for emphasis. They are some of God’s oldest and wisest servants. They have prayed down the walls of prejudice and broken the strongholds of anger and pain with the prayers of their hands and feet. Their meal was a prayer, though you couldn’t hear it.

They know something that you do not know.

These people know that the bible is not a self-help book full of easy answers, but a book of stories and wisdom that is meant to lead us into relationship and worship. There are hard and fast truths in it, yes, but they are surrounded by soft truths, and slippery truths, and sometimes truths, and truths that once were true but are no longer true, and truths that are only true if you are in the right state of mind, and truths that are only true if you are not hurting someone, and truths that are true in the moment but not if you are talking about the moment, and truths that can only be lived and should never be spoken, and truths that we cannot hear, and truths that are more than we can bear.

The truths of the bible are utterly beyond anyone who seeks to own truth and who seeks truth above the Spirit of God.

The bible is not a book for those who need a weapon. It is not a book for those who know where they are going and what questions they will ask. It is not a book for those who are in a hurry and looking for the shortest route.

The bible is a book for pilgrims and wanderers. It is a book for children and for those who wish to become children again. It is a book for seekers and searchers and dreamers.

It is a book for anyone and everyone who hopes that the desires of God might be written upon their hearts.

[+] 
Posted: Thu Jan 06, 2005 9:31 am
Scott Mc
Has ideas
 
Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 77
Location: E Nash




I'll give it a stab. Here's my perspective.

The Bible is one of the three ways that God reveals himself to me, in addition to his revelation through his creation and his revelation to my heart through my conscience and awareness. The more that I dig in to the scriptures, the more I can learn about the nature of God.

I agree with Pastor Live that the Bible is often used as a shortcut or tool for "proving" personal spirituality-ness. The people that do that do the same with God as well. I think this comes from our post-industrialization need to be able to understand and deconstruct everything, like we have done with the atom. We have tried to come up with recipes for how to do things, not just Christianity or spirituality, but EVERYTHING. Think about how many self-help, do-it-yourself, even-you-can, or _____ for dummies books there are out there.

I do not believe that EVERYTHING in the Bible is accurate. The Bible refers to the sun standing still in the sky, and we know the earth revolves around the sun, not vice-versa. But this is a matter of idiom, even now. We don't discount the local news because they tell us what time SUNRISE and SUNSET are going to be.

I grant it to God that even through the pens of sinful men, he can exercise his sovereignty to preserve writings through time. I think the difficult part is that, really, anybody could write anything and title it Bible...but that doesn't make it "the" Bible. But how would everybody know the distinction? How would the theoretical person that has never heard of the Bible but wants to go buy one in the mall today know the difference (theoretical because how could he want something he does not know about?).

I think that the Bible is used as a crutch by many, but that doesn't discount the use of leaning on it for guidance and comfort and direction, again, not as a book, but as God's revelation of himself.

Some of the things the Right Reverend Live points out in terms of the use of the Bible are in direct conflict with the Bible. His theoretical Christian approaches people with pride, disdain, and arrogance. He does not love them as himself. He is not a peacemaker. To me, this is a problem with the person, not the Bible.

Maybe a big problem for people is that our logical minds that want to know everything cannot accept that there are mysteries about God that we cannot understand. Truly take into account that the Bible itself says that the thoughts of God are not the thoughts of man. I think we often say, "well yeah, sure, but that just means I don't know why God would let a tsunami occur in southeast Asia." Sam, you've alluded before to the mystery of God and I believe you are completely correct in your assessment that a large majority of us have extracted the mystery from God to please our own logical comfort levels.

[+] 
Posted: Fri Jan 07, 2005 7:57 am
Sam
Newbie
 
Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 41




Thanks for stepping up to the plate, Scott. I agree with a lot of your comments. I do see a revelation of God in the Bible, but not THE COMPLETE revelation of who God is or what God can do. (It's interesting you use the Joshua passage to illustrate metaphor. I would agree that it is not a literal passage, but likewise would not call it a miracle.)

I see the Bible as a wonderful unfolding narrative. Because I have studied it in an academic setting, I have seen it deconstructed and undergone higher criticism. Knowing a lot of the history of the writing of the Bible makes me look at it in a different light than I did in high school or the first three years of college.

I think that Bible has many wonderful things to say and a few things that my 21st century mind wants to delete. But looking at those passages (God mandating killing, female subordination, etc.) makes me look at the historical and social context of their writing, and not the God of love who is spoken of in other places.

I would never use the Bible as an accurate history or science book, but rather as a book of the Christian community with many truths (though not many of them are literal) that can dramatically shape and improve lives if they are lived out in our current social setting. The challenge is how those truths are exactly lived out, which makes this whole journey meaningful and the need for a community even greater.

Of course my favorite part is the ethics of Jesus as described in the gospel narratives. Here we see a beautiful picture of how Jesus was remembered for early believers. The ways in which my theology has changed over the last few years have allowed me to not need to see these events as necessarily literal, but as a portrait of someone so infused with God that people couldn't help but catch that same vision.

I don't care if the Bible is literal. To me it is a collection of how people experienced God and ways that maybe we can do. But it is not God.

[+] 
Posted: Fri Jan 07, 2005 9:21 am
Scott Mc
Has ideas
 
Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 77
Location: E Nash




Thanks Sam. As is my modus operandi, I'd like to ask a few questions so I can better understand your perspective.

Quote:
I do see a revelation of God in the Bible, but not THE COMPLETE revelation of who God is or what God can do. (It's interesting you use the Joshua passage to illustrate metaphor. I would agree that it is not a literal passage, but likewise would not call it a miracle.)


I think that I agree with you about the Bible not being the complete revelation of God and his nature. I think even with the other two types of revelation that we still have an incomplete understanding of God. Largely due to the limitations of our human minds. I would not NECESSARILY agree with someone who pulls a particular verse out of the Bible and uses that for a "God is _______." I do think that the Bible must be viewed in its entirety to understand how God uses it to reveal himself to us. Is this what you are saying as well?

Also, do you believe that any of the miraculous events of the Bible are actual or they are all some type of imagery to portray a story to a people (Moses miracles, OT and NT healings, Elisha miracles, etc.)? I just want to understand if you are talking about my Joshua example or the Bible in general.

Quote:
Because I have studied it in an academic setting, I have seen it deconstructed and undergone higher criticism. Knowing a lot of the history of the writing of the Bible makes me look at it in a different light than I did in high school or the first three years of college.

I have not been to seminary nor have I had a single Bible class in college. In fact, most of my philosophy classes (my major) were based on the ASSUMPTION that there was no God and everybody kind of had that understanding. The thing I know from my own academic experience in both philosophy, music theory/history and business administration is that perspectives on any academic subject tend to vary from school to school and from professor to professor. My own experience has been that I could have different professors who teach opposing views equally convincingly and passionatley. My question is whether this is taken into consideration in appealing to your academic analysis?

Also, I do think that a difficult thing for people to do is reconcile some of the things we read about in the Bible, like you have suggested -- capital punishment, subordination of women...especially when we see some of this in the NT writings of Paul. I don't think that the woman's role in church is to be silent and seek direction at home, but...really...couldn't say how to reconcile that with the actual verses in the Bible. Truthfully, I just don't worry about it I guess. (Not really a question here I guess )

Quote:
I don't care if the Bible is literal. To me it is a collection of how people experienced God and ways that maybe we can do. But it is not God.

Do you think this is contradictory to comments that you have already made? You have an answer to whether the Bible is literal, and that answer has importance to you because it is paramount to how you view the nature of the Bible and the nature of God. I may be missing something here.

Enjoying the discussion.

[+] God meant it
Posted: Sun Jan 09, 2005 2:54 pm
astrotoby
Has ideas
 
Joined: 24 Aug 2004
Posts: 93
Location: earth




The bible we have is the bible God meant us to have. He decided who would write it and what they would write. He decided how it would be preserved, and lost and found at various times, and how it would be translated, and by whom. He decided who would be making decisions about canonization, and which books would be included. Everything we read in the bible today is exactly what God meant to say, and what he meant us to read.

[+] Great question
Posted: Mon Jan 10, 2005 12:00 pm
Sam
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Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 41




These are some really good questions, Scott. Thank you for your perspective as well, astrotoby.

To barely touch the iceberg, but to give a vague point of origin, I see the Bible as a chronological document that conveys peoples’ experience with the spirit of God within their changing community. Likewise, my point of origin does not begin with thinking that Scripture is 'inerrant' or 'inspired,' but I do think that is a valid viewpoint for others to have.

Because people wrote different parts of the Bible at different points in time, they have experienced God differently: The 4 writers who penned the Torah needed to explain how the world began, so we see a Creator. The prophets in exile needed an explanation as to why bad things happened, so we see a Judge. David experienced a grab-bag of God in his lifetime, so we get all sorts of descriptions in the Psalms. None of the above titles are exclusive to a writer or a time period, but some writers lean more heavily on certain descriptions.

As you said, Scott, we now know the earth revolves around the sun. In the same way, I think that if Hosea or Matthew were to ride on an airplane, they would think that the hand of God was guiding the metal bird through the sky. But we know planes fly because of thrust and Bernoulli's principle.

So, I would explain away miracles as the rational explanations of the writers. However, and you may find this interesting, if I were preaching a sermon during Advent or Easter, I would reference the virgin birth and the resurrection frequently. Their actual occurrences wouldn't matter to me because there is so much to learn from the stories of these events that for me their literalness doesn’t matter. Virgin births and resurrections are great stories of our faith and are to be celebrated. I would treat them liturgically but not scientifically.

Historically speaking, sometimes I think that the Enlightenment did more to change Christianity than the Reformation. The Enlightenment made people begin to equate truth with factuality. However, something can be true and not factual. No doubt you read bedtime stories to your daughters that aren't real but teach them life lessons. It's hard for us to think in these terms because we've grown up with post-Enlightenment Western minds. But I imagine that the writers likewise weren't concerned with the factuality of what they were writing but rather that it communicated profound truths of God.

[+] 
Posted: Tue Jan 11, 2005 11:35 am
shawn
Site Admin
 
Joined: 26 Jul 2004
Posts: 65
Location: 609




Sam,

you may want to choose your words a little more carefully.

if i'm hearing what you just said, and please clarify if i'm wrong, you just denied the resurrection. i don't know if you are talking just to get a rise out of people, or if you truely believe what you are saying, but i am pretty shocked at your words this time.

_________________
i put my shirt on, one pantleg at a time, just like anyone else.

[+] 
Posted: Tue Jan 11, 2005 12:03 pm
Sam
Newbie
 
Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 41




I think you read too much in to my words, but I appreciate your concern.

Remember: The realm of possibility is larger than the realm of truth, the realm of truth is larger than the realm of facts, and the realm of facts is larger than our own knowledge.

[+] 
Posted: Tue Jan 11, 2005 2:02 pm
westberry05
Newbie
 
Joined: 05 Jan 2005
Posts: 16




Sam

I would like you to explain yourself…. If you don't mind
When I read your post, you don’t seem to be sending a mixed message
Like this quote:

“Their actual occurrences wouldn't matter to me because there is so much to learn from the stories of these events that for me their literalness doesn’t matter. Virgin births and resurrections are great stories of our faith and are to be celebrated. I would treat them liturgically but not scientifically.”
You go on to compare these events to “bedtime stories” we tell our kids

I’m lost here:

The Virgin Birth, the Resurrection, these are pretty important things to Christianity, and furthermore are points that Mosaic was founded on…
That is to say the founders of the church here hold these points as valid and very important
Are you hoping for this to change?
Are you just trying get a rise out people?
(I’m asking the same question here because you didn’t answer it the first time
Your quote was good and all, but you still avoided the answer)

Here are some questions maybe you can answer for me:
How do you explain the whole forgiveness of sin issues? I mean to say “who forgives us?” If Jesus’ death and resurrection is not true
And if Jesus was not born of a Virgin and did not rise from the dead and the miracles are just the author’s additions to scripture…then why is Jesus important at all to Christianity?

I’m not trying to attack….I really would like to know more
Maybe I’m missing your point
Help me out because it seems that the core beliefs of Mosaic run counter to your beliefs...
We can chat tonight at DPC maybe?

[+] 
Posted: Tue Jan 11, 2005 2:53 pm
Sam
Newbie
 
Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 41




Thank you for your questions.

I would love to chat at DPC tonight, but I have previous plans. Some friends are coming to my place for dinner at the same time. Maybe next week??? Or tomorrow night - maybe a bunch of people could get together to discuss?

And I don't have time at this moment (I have a 3 PM meeting) to get into some other issues that could perhaps clear things up. But, don't fear - I'll be back to post soon.

REALLY enjoying this discussion now...

[+] 
Posted: Wed Jan 12, 2005 1:57 pm
Gary
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Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 25




Westberry05 writes ...

"The Virgin Birth, the Resurrection, these are pretty important things to Christianity, and furthermore are points that Mosaic was founded on…"

For thoughts about the resurrection. I would say to journey in 1 Cornithians 15 ... Immerese yourself in the scripture.

Dan Kimball states, that it this way his life "i want to immerse my mind and heart in the inspiration of the Word, and i will have enough there to last a lifetime.”

_________________
May the love of God continually interrupt your day,

Gary
coffee drinker

[+] 
Posted: Wed Jan 12, 2005 6:40 pm
Sam
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Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 41




1 Corinthians 15 is a beautiful passage, one in which Paul shares some of the wonderful foundations of our faith. I do encourage everyone to read it.

What if the resurrection Paul is referencing is not literal?

What if he is speaking of a metaphorical resurrection, that of the resurrection of Christ in the hearts of the faithful?

Paul declares that Jesus appeared to many, which would back up a literal resurrection. But then he parallels these appearances with Jesus appearing to him as well. But we know Jesus had long ascended to heaven when Paul had his conversion. There was no bodily appearance for Paul. (Galatians 1:15-16) He may have seen a vision, had a dream, or perhaps the love and power of Christ supernaturally gripped him so that he saw the transformative Christ. Furthermore, the end of the chapter, where Paul discusses a spiritual body, could lead us to reasonably conclude that Jesus' appearances were that of a spiritual, and not a literal, body. (1 Cor. 15:35-3

Another possibility is that Paul is refuting Apollo, who may have been a student of Philo, and his exegesis of Genesis 1 and 2. In other words, Paul is doctrinally trying to right Apollo's wrong. (Philo maintained that the 2 distinct creation stories were if fact 2 separate creations, a spiritual one and then a physical one.) (1 Cor. 15:42-49)

Or is Paul just making sure that the Corinthians don't get out of hand with their spiritual gifts assessment and declare themselves already perfect and holy while still alive? (1 Cor. 12-14)

There are lots of perspectives to consider, here.

[+] 
Posted: Wed Jan 12, 2005 10:38 pm
Gary
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Joined: 12 Aug 2004
Posts: 25




Without the resurrection, really the gospel is incomplete. The purpose of the gospel is to remedy man’s sin problem. Not just to restore communities or make the world a better place or make man more loving. The fact that God raised Jesus from the dead makes it possible for life to come to any area of creation.

Without it, the end of everything is death. His ultimate purpose is to reconcile the world to Himself. And that can’t happen without the resurrection. If God can’t raise the dead, he can’t raise dead hearts or lives.

[There are lots of perspectives to consider, here.] Yes,but not worth much if they don't move us. Debate, discussion. immersion all to move us to Jesus.

Consider these thoughts about JESUS by John o' Keefe

he is not status quo: jesus, because of his radical nature, became extremely unpopular with the political, the institutional establishment, and the religious rulers of his day. as a result of this unpopularity jesus ended up being convicted of false charges, tried by a prejudiced jury, condemned by a cowardly judge, tortured and beaten beyond all recognition, and killed as an innocent man by the cruelest means known possible - crucifixion. sound like someone you know?

he is not dead: surprise !!!! he was crucified, dead (he didn't stay dead !!!!) and buried in a tomb borrowed from a rich friend (yes, he had rich friends - remember, he loved everyone) and guarded by a few roman soldiers. yet, many witnesses (over 500) testify that he rose from the dead and was seen again walking and talking with people. some even touched him physically, and eat with him; he was no ghost - he really was alive and well in human flesh. remember this, the rock was not moved so jesus could get out of the tomb, the rock was moved for us to enter. sound like something you need?

he is timeless: people through all generations of time and history have not only believed the story of who jesus was (and is) and what he did, but they have also experienced him in real, transforming grace, first hand. they have discovered, what a great many have discovered, that he is as real, relevant and alive. this generation is no exception, none at all. what he has to say speaks to us, befriends us, guides us, heals our brokenness and pain, and intervenes in our lives just as he did when he was on earth and always has done. his touch is real and timeless. sound like something you need?

he is God in the flesh: i know, it's hard to believe, but just because it's hard to believe does not make it "unbelievable." after all, i have never seen a billion dollars, yet i believe a billion dollars is real. if you desire to have the heart of a rebel, to be transparent, and to be accepted for who you are, not what others desire you to be, then may i suggest you look deeper into the claims of christianity. because it is something we all can use!

JESUS

read more about Jesus at www.mosaicnashville.org/thoughts

_________________
May the love of God continually interrupt your day,

Gary
coffee drinker

[+] 
Posted: Thu Jan 13, 2005 9:30 am
FatAndy
Newbie
 
Joined: 10 Jan 2005
Posts: 5




I am finally going to get to post!!!

I too am loving this discussion, but I am not really understanding the logic behind thinking that the resurrection of Christ was only in the hearts of believers. I don't understand why if this was just in spirit, in Luke 24:39-43 the disciple's touched and ate with Jesus.

Can you touch a hallucination? Can you feed a spirit broiled fish?

Maybe it is easier for some of us to view the resurrection as only in spirit, because we have a hard time imagining the ability to see our Lord in a physical way. Since our relationship with Jesus is on a spiritual level, maybe it's our human mind that keeps Him there...on a spiritual level.

_________________
Picture a mic, the stage is empty
A beat like this might tempt me
To pose, show my rings and my fat gold chain
Grab the mic like I’m on soul train
--Eric B & Rakim "I Know You Got Soul"

[+] what do you think?
Posted: Thu Jan 13, 2005 11:32 pm
lynnette
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Joined: 17 Aug 2004
Posts: 21
Location: miles from where i used to be




Quote:
The purpose of the gospel is to remedy man’s sin problem. Not just to restore communities or make the world a better place or make man more loving.


i wonder about this…i suppose because in a lot of circles the gospel stops with “to remedy humanity’s sin problem.” it’s as if once people say a certain set of words and ascribe logically to a certain list of beliefs, they’re finished. it’s as if the box gets checked, and they are just waiting until they die.

i guess for me the question is: what is the purpose of the gospel for today? if the cross from the past saves people from hell in the future, then what about all the time in between? what about Jesus’ desire to bring abundant life?

when I look at the story of Jesus, i hear him say “love God and love people.” and then i watch him do that. surrounding himself with a rag-tag group of men and women to be his disciples, Jesus took up residence here on earth and lived his life in such a way that those with whom he came in contact were radically transformed. he spoke to the outcasts. he touched the sick. he felt compassion for the needy. he lifted up the lowly. he confronted the rich. he challenged the elite. he brought down the lofty. Jesus stepped outside of all human-made boundaries and broke all human-made rules, conducting every breath and every movement of his life in a manner of love. and he taught his followers to do the same…going so far as to say that – after him – they would do even greater things.

brian mclaren is a pastor whose writings have helped me tremendously in recent years. he articulates thoughts and feelings that I have, but am not always able to put into words. i highly recommend “A New Kind of Christian,” “More Ready than You Realize,” and “a Generous Orthodoxy.” i think his writing offers a helpful perspective for all who are seeking an understanding of what it means to live in the way of Christ in today’s world.

mclaren’s latest book, “a Generous Orthodoxy” deals with a lot of things that have been posted on the Mosaic forum in recent weeks. specifically related to this topic, his book discusses what he calls “the seven Jesuses I have known.” below is a chart he includes to sum up these Jesuses (though this is mclaren's own chart, i admit that i am cutting out some of his explanation. the book itself devotes several pages to each view).

1) type of christian: conservative protestant
focus/problem: the human race is guilty of sin and wrongdoing.
good news: Jesus’ death pays the full penalty for human sin

2) type of christian: pentecostal
focus/problem: the human race is held down by disease and poverty
good news: Jesus teaches us how to receive miracles and healings from God through faith in promises

3) type of christian: roman catholic
focus/problem: the human race is enslaved by fear of death
good news: Jesus resurrection defeats death and liberates humanity

4) type of christian: eastern orthodox
focus/problem: the human race is spiritually sick and needs healing; it has dropped out of the “dance” of creation”
good news: Jesus’ entry (or incarnation) into humanity and history brings God’s healing to the human race and all of creation

5) type of christian: liberal protestant
focus/problem: the human race suffers from ignorance of the teachings and ways of Christ.
good news: Jesus’ example and teachings inspire us to work compassionately for social justice

6) type of christian: anabaptist
focus/problem: the human race is divided and violent and needs to learn the ways of Christ in community.
good news: Jesus convenes a learning community of disciples who seek to model lives of love and peace.

7) type of christian: liberation theology (nonviolent)
focus/problem: humanity is oppressed by corrupt powers, systems, and regimes.
good news: Jesus commissions and leads bands of activists to confront unjust regimes and make room for the shalom of God.

mclaren says of the first – the conservative protestant Jesus - “But as precious and indispensable as this perspective is for me, over the years a feeling grew within me, usually vague but sometimes acute, that I was missing something, perhaps something important. Jesus’ cross in the past saved me from hell in the future, but it was hard to be clear on what it meant for me in the struggle of the present. And more importantly, did the gospel have anything to say about justice for the many, not just the justification of the individual? Was the gospel intended to give hope for human cultures and the created order in history, or was history a lost cause, so that the gospel only could give hope to individual souls beyond death, beyond history – like a small lifeboat in which a few lucky souls escape a huge sinking cruise ship?”

i have known and am still growing to know many of these Jesuses. i am sure there are more than just the seven listed above. and it seems to me that each is valid way of knowing Jesus. each has its shortfalls, each has its high points. and perhaps they all can exist together in some kind of mysterious tension. but at this point in my life – the conservative protestant view alone leaves me feeling utterly dry and hopeless. it seems to truncate the gospel, cutting out some of the most beautiful, meaningful parts.

what do you think?

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