Friday, September 11, 2020

Climate Fires: Choose Life

We can't endure against the grain of reality 

The following could be used in a sermon, homily, or apart of a call to confession:

If we speak of Jesus as a human being offering a divine gift, offering unrestricted love to the Father and to the world, we are speaking, necessarily, of someone who is going to be intensely and terribly unsafe in the world...Sin, the state of revolt against truth, has consequences; it exacts a cost from us. If we live in untruth, in self-deceit, we are automatically condemned to undermining and destroying the life that is in us. We can’t live against the grain of reality and expect to survive indefinitely (which is why our environmental crisis is such a powerful and poignant symbol of our corporate sinfulness). So when Jesus faces the final uncompromising violent rejection of the religious and political powers of his day, we can say that he ‘embodies’ not only the purposes and possibilities of God but the effects of the self-destructiveness of human beings. Jesus, hanging on the cross says to us: ‘This is what your untruth means: you have been offered unconditional mercy and you turn from it in loathing. You have come to a place where you cannot recognize life itself for what it is. You don’t know the difference between life and death. The reality in you is dead.’ What is happening to Jesus- his dreadful physical suffering, his mental and spiritual torment as he cries to God asking why he has been forsaken- is a sort of picture of our ultimate fate, the death that is unreality, being cut off from what is true. Rowan Williams, Tokens of Trust

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