Friday, August 29, 2008

Romans and Revelation

Joseph provides a quote from NT Wright's book, "Surprised by Hope":

"Maybe what we are faced with in our own day is a similar challenge: to focus not on the question of which human beings God is going to take to heaven and how he is going to do it, but on the question of how God is going to rescue the world through human beings ... if we could reread Romans and the light of this reframing... I think we would find much food for thought" (p. 185).

Let's accept the invitation/challenge: what parts of Paul's letter to the Romans, or John's Revelation, would you cite to support or challenge Wright's contention? Those who are reading "Surprised by Hope" should feel free to add material from that book to this discussion.

One favor/request: can we try to point to specific sections in Romans, Revelation, other NT documents, or Wright's book in making our comments?

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Gospel in a Pluralist Society - intro.

Newbigin, Lesslie. The Gospel in a Pluralist Society. Cambridge and Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1989.

Here is a passage on page 9 that adjusted some of my own thinking:

In the famous story of the blind men and the elephant, so often quoted in the interests of religious agnosticism, the real point of the story is constantly overlooked. The story is told from the point of view of the king and his courtiers, who are not blind but can see that the blind men are unable to grasp the full reality of the elephant and are only able to get hold of part of the truth. The story is constantly told to neutralize the affirmation of the great religions, to suggest that they learn humility and recognize that none of them can have more than one aspect of the truth. But, of course, the real point of the story is exactly the opposite. If the king were also blind there would be no story. The story is told by the king, and it is the immensely arrogant claim of one who sees the full truth which all the world’s religions are only groping after. It embodies the claim to know the full reality which relativizes all the claims of the religions and philosophies.”

I move the rest of this post, Newbigin's bio and some introductory comments over to my blog for the sake of brevity. You can go there if you want to read the whole thing and come back here for comments.

ok -- my new copy of McLaren just arrived as I was writing this ...I'll hit it this week.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Everything Must Change II, Chapter and Verse

We're continuing our look at Brian McLaren's book Everything Must Change. In order to focus the discussion just a bit, let's try this: please cite a specific section that either (a) says something you strongly agree with, (b) says something you strongly disagree with, or (c) says something that raised some questions (e.g., "I really didn't get this--can someone help me understand it?" or "Hmmm... I hadn't thought of it like that before... now I'm wondering if... ?") One passage could serve for all three kinds of responses.