Thursday, July 25, 2002

paradox

Doing theology means engaging mystery and being engaged by mystery and especially engaging and being engaged by paradox. In the United Church of Christ Statement of Faith we affirm, "In Jesus Christ, the man of Nazareth, our crucified and risen Lord, God has come to us and shared our common lot." In the Old Covenant Scriptures we encounter many human redeemers; in the New Covenant God Himself is our Redeemer, though we still find redemption in a human, but now our redemption is in a human One Who is yet the Christ! For Paul, Jesus becomes the Divine Christ at his death and resurrection; Jesus is always at once both crucified and risen. For Paul, we are Christed at our baptism, when we partake of Jesus the Christ's death and resurrection. For Christians, the empty cross implies the empty tomb and challenges us to be free in Christ so as to live Easter in the midst of tombstones and graves – to assume our "Christness." We Christians are a people of the book, our Book being the scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. in the Gospels we have John's "Son of God" as well as the synoptics' "Son of Man." Just as "Son of a prophet" means a prophet, "Son of God" means a God and "Son of Man" means a human. Enoch in the Pseudepigrapha (as well as Daniel and Ezekiel) refers to the "Son of Man" as the One who will usher in the New Age. The outrage and the SCANDAL of the Gospel is a Holy God Who lives and dies as one of us, that it is a HUMAN who ushers in the New Age. But that human is the Divine Christ! And just as the written Word of scripture is both divine revelation and human disclosure, so is the Living Word Jesus the Christ both divine revelation and human disclosure. Showing US who we are and showing us who we can become. Each of us is both born of the spirit and born of the flesh – Luke refers to Adam as "Son of God."

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