Posts tagged: N.T. Wright
The Santa Ana Winds descended upon Southern California this week with a vengeance—the strongest winds here in thirty years. They remind me of the hurricanes we lived through in Florida years ago. After a calm night the winds were back this morning. My daughters were hurriedly preparing to go outside. In the midst of the commotion I asked, “What are you going to do outside?” My oldest daughter, Madison, replied, “To see the wind!”
The Gospel reading for this week is from Mark 1:1-8. The Markan gospel skips Jesus birth narrative and begins with John the “baptizer”, who’s radical message of repentance and forgiveness is turning the world upside down. As the text says, “And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to him, and were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins.” They’d come to see the wind!
In 1991 a Nor’easter off the coast of New England became known as the perfect storm. For that event to occur, three weather systems had to collide—a cold front from the west, a high-pressure system from the north, and a hurricane from the southeast. In his new book, Simply Jesus: A New Vision of Who He Was, What He Did, and Why He Matters (HarperOne, 2011), N.T. Wright uses this “Perfect Storm” as a metaphor to talk about the turbulent times of Jesus’ first century Advent.
There’s a debate raging in the Seventh-day Adventist Church about creation vs. evolution, particularly as its taught in higher education, e.g. La Sierra University. I am not about to get into that issue here.
I am presenting a theology of justice tomorrow at CrossWalk U. titled, “Justice Isn’t a Four Letter Word”. In preparing, I came across an idea in N.T. Wright’s Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church. Wright points out an irony in the creation vs. evolution debate. Keep in mind Wright isn’t talking about Seventh-day Adventists specifically.
The irony is that those American churches that protest most vocally against the teaching of Darwinism in their schools are often, in their public policies, supporting a kind of economic Darwinism, the survival of the fittest in world markets and military power.
- N.T. Wright
Surprised by Hope, p. 219-220
So my question: If the church won’t “flinch” in our stand for creation, will we be consistent? If we stand against Darwinism, will we stand against it in all forms, even social Darwinism? If not, it seems to me our convictions about creation have little real world significance other than a house of cards, propping up our beliefs.
Here’s an interesting blog post about N.T. Wright’s take on Christmas based on the hymns we sing during the season. I came across it thanks to a number of RT’s on Twitter. It’s by Peter Leithart at the CREDENDAagenda blog. A really good read. I couldn’t agree with Wright (and Leithart) more. You can read his post here. Here’s the punchline for me if you don’t have time to read the whole thing:
What does Simeon sing about? When he takes the infant Jesus into his arms, he blessed God: “Let your servant depart in peace, according to Your word; for my eyes have seen Your salvation.” And what is that? Access to heaven? Forgiveness of sins? No: “the light of revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of Your people Israel.”