Thursday, October 28, 2004

It's been a while, hasn't it? Well, last weekend, Sheryl and I took a Mommy and Daddy trip to New York City. We stayed with my cousin and his wife and daughter in Queens and it was a lot of fun. I'll put that on my list of things to talk about at some point.

So right now, the list includes:

  • Mere Discipleship
  • The ZOE Conference
  • Part 2 of Inspiration
  • The New York Trip
  • My broken pinky

However, on the plane up and back, I started reading The Original Jesus by Tom (NT) Wright. It was recommended by a friend.

I'm not all the way done with it, but I'm really liking it. It looks at the Gospels, but looks at them in a literary way, confirming a lot of what I wrote in the Inspiration piece below. Anyway, one thing that's really hit me is how revolutionary Jesus was for his time. He was some who knew what would happen to him if he said the things he said. He knew that preaching his message would be misunderstood by both his close followers and the ruling powers. He knew that as the leader of a large group of people (a lot of whom were probably militants), he would be considered a threat, by both the ruling Jews and the Romans.

And he did it anyway.

I think we've tamed Jesus. We've put him in our church boxes and made him say what we want him to say. We've made his words easy, we've made his example simple.

But here's what I truly believe: Jesus didn't live his life the way he did, died the way he did, and rose again, so that we'd all sit in our pretty church buildings and sing pretty songs, while thinking how great we are compared to everyone else.

Jesus didn't say the things he did or do the things he did for us to side with a particular political party (insert elephant or donkey here) and try to be a part of the power structures of the world.

Jesus formed an army. Not an army like the Romans thought he was doing, or the Sanhedrin thought he was doing, or even his disciples thought he was doing. Jesus formed an army of people who would lay down their lives for their enemies, who would love others radically, who would show grace at all costs. I'm not there yet, but that's where I want to be.

I'll end tonight with something Lee Camp said: We make the mistake of thinking that grace is only a spiritual concern. Grace covers all areas of our lives. It is a spiritual, political, economic, and social concern.

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