Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Another Place EMC is Getting Discussed

I find I do like the interactive nature of the discussion; it helps me collect my thoughts and of course feels less isolating: so I am posting on EMC in this blog but also here:

It's a good beginning discussion. Check it out if you can :)


Monday, February 11, 2008

A Quick Post

another sitting in my office quickie post.

I am taking my time with Brian for good reasons (and now will be watching and maybe participating in another online discussion of the book; see the comment below). When I was young(er) I was the quickest parrot in the birdcage. I had a fast response, usually wrong and borrowed from someone else, for every theological question. Brian's book has introduced me to the emergent church; that diverse movement, and his representation of it, deserves time.

In the meantime and as I think about my response, I am rereading the gospels, especially Luke and John; rereading Wright, especially his section on Judgement in JVG. For there he finalizes the leap he began in NTPG: a highly realized eschatology. I know he does not like that term, prefers "ignaural" eschatology, and discusses that in both books; fair enough. But it must be admitted, so many verses Christians have taken to refer to hell fire and a final day of judgement after death Wright goes after with single minded tenacity: these are current day prophetic warnings against Israel and especially Jerusalem. Some scriptural writings do clearly teach a resurrection of the dead, including the gospels (Mark and John I can say without doubt), and NTW is not negating that, I think. Still, I can see why emergent has latched onto at least that part of his exegesis. It lies behind chunks of EMC, for sure.

So, there you go. I'm busy but good. Have given up all alcohol for lent and am once again enjoying this very special season (once more, I am so glad to be a liturgical). I love serving communion at the altar whenever I am the Eucharistic minister/chalice bearer. In fact, I have known nothing like it. How lucky I am to experience that! What a gift to my life which has been so much struggle and suffering looking back!

But I must run. Students waiting :)

Sincere love to all, and more on BDM soon!

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Ash Wednesday 08

The three readings for today's service, if they were all we had, would almost be enough. (Isaiah 58: 1-12; II Corinthians 5:20-6:10; Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21)

And lest anyone think Brian is fabricating his emphasis on caring for the poor in EMC, or that I am making it up in agreeing with him, let me include today's reading from Isaiah. It is all I want to put up today. Let it stand on its own:

Shout out, do not hold back!
Lift up your voice like a trumpet!
Announce to my people their rebellion,
to the house of Jacob their sins.
Yet day after day they seek me
and delight to know my ways,
as if they were a nation that practiced righteousness
and did not forsake the ordinance of their God;
they ask of me righteous judgments,
they delight to draw near to God.
"Why do we fast, but you do not see?
Why humble ourselves, but you do not notice?"
Look, you serve your own interest on your fast day,
and oppress all your workers.
Look, you fast only to quarrel and to fight
and to strike with a wicked fist.
Such fasting as you do today
will not make your voice heard on high.
Is such the fast that I choose,
a day to humble oneself?
Is it to bow down the head like a bulrush,
and to lie in sackcloth and ashes?
Will you call this a fast,
a day acceptable to the LORD?
Is not this the fast that I choose:
to loose the bonds of injustice,
to undo the thongs of the yoke,
to let the oppressed go free,
and to break every yoke?
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry,
and bring the homeless poor into your house;
when you see the naked, to cover them,
and not to hide yourself from your own kin?
Then your light shall break forth like the dawn,
and your healing shall spring up quickly;
your vindicator shall go before you,
the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard.
Then you shall call, and the LORD will answer;
you shall cry for help, and he will say, Here I am.

If you remove the yoke from among you,
the pointing of the finger, the speaking of evil,
if you offer your food to the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the afflicted,
then your light shall rise in the darkness
and your gloom be like the noonday.
The LORD will guide you continually,
and satisfy your needs in parched places,
and make your bones strong;
and you shall be like a watered garden,
like a spring of water,
whose waters never fail.
Your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt;
you shall raise up the foundations of many generations;
you shall be called the repairer of the breach,
the restorer of streets to live in.

Isaiah 58:1-12