Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Checking in

I've been MIA for over a month now. I apologize for not at least checking in. The two conferences I attended last month gave me a lot to think about, plus I've been busy revising a paper and working on grant applications (gotta eat, you know). And for some unnamable reason I haven't been able to bring myself to log into blogger....

I'm hoping to post again before the end of the summer. Until then... hope you're enjoying a great one!

4 comments:

CrimsonCatholic said...

Well, when you get a chance, here's a meme that I pass on as food for thought. No pressure, of course; it's just an interesting subject.
http://crimsoncatholic.blogspot.com/2007/07/why-i-love-jesus.html

David M. Smith said...

It's been too long. : - 0

Josh said...

Lawrence,

On an earlier subject I'd like to see what you think of these paragraphs:

Philippians 2:1-11 is widely recognized as the “kenosis” passage in which we see that Jesus shed much of his power and comfort in order to become human and suffer death in faithful obedience to God’s will. What is less recognized is how this passage speaks not only of Jesus’ setting aside certain kinds of power, it also illustrates Jesus’ powerful intervention by crossing the border between heaven and earth and obediently placing himself in the line of fire between oppressors and the oppressed. Obedient to the point of death — even death on a cross!

Kenosis is critical. Jesus does not come to earth with the armed intent to coerce unbelievers into obedience. He rejects this path in his incarnation, and rejects it again at the start of his ministry when Satan offers sure outcomes through the politics of coercion. Instead Jesus’ kenosis - his refusal to use his coercive power - is only preparation for kairos - his timely life giving intervention. Jesus’ kenosis, without kairos, would simply have resulted in unfaithful cowardice. Kairos, timely intervention, is the difference between Confucius’ saying, "Do not unto others what you would not have done unto you" and Jesus saying, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

Often even less recognized is that the thrust of the Philippians passage is not simply information about Jesus – rather it is a challenge to his followers. The passage tells us about Jesus’ actions as an illustration of what it means for us to obey the directive to "have the same mind that was in Christ Jesus". Jesus, the lifegiving life giving, noncoercive, interventionist, is our example of how to enter into solidarity with the sufferings of the oppressed. Kenosis and karios meet in Jesus' faithful body.

Lawrence Gage said...

Josh, I guess it's good, depending on the purpose. It seems to be fine for an inspirational sermon or homily, though even for that application, I'm a bit uncertain about the kairos connection (which btw seems to be misspelled at the end). Maybe I just don't understand the concept well enough.

LG