Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Wright's Right: Our Contemporary Muddles

The kingdom that Jesus inaugurated, that is implemented through his cross, is emphatically for this world. The four gospels together demand a complete reappraisal of the various avoidance tactics Western Christianity has employed rather than face this challenge head-on. It simply won’t do to line up the options, as has normally been done, into either a form of “Christendom,” by which people normally mean the capitulation of the gospel to the world’s way of power, or a form of sectarian withdrawal. Life is more complex, more interesting, and more challenging than that. The gospels are there, waiting to inform a new generation for holistic mission, to embody, explain, and advocate new ways of ordering communities, nations, and the world. The church belongs at the very heart of the world, to be the place of prayer and holiness at the point where the world is in pain—not to be a somewhat “religious” version of the world, on the one hand, or a detached, heavenly minded enclave, on the other. It is a measure of our contemporary muddles that we find it very difficult to articulate, let alone to live out, a vision of church, kingdom, and world that is neither of these.

Wright, N. T. (2012-03-13). How God Became King: The Forgotten Story of the Gospels (Kindle Locations 3900-3909). Harper Collins, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

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