There really is no such thing as “Christian marriage” as the term is commonly used. “Christian marriage” is a vain, romantic, unbiblical conception. “Christian marriage” is a fiction. There is no more an institution of “Christian marriage” than there is a “Christian nation” or a “Christian lawyer” or a “Christian athlete.” Even where such terms are invoked as a matter of careless formulation and imprecise speech, they are symptoms of a desire to separate Christians from the common life of the world, whereas Christians are called into radical involvement in the common life of the world. To be sure, there are Christians who are athletes and those who practice law, and there are Christians who are citizens of this and the other nations. But none of these or similar activities or institutions are in any respect essentially Christian, nor can they be changed or reconstituted in order to become Christian. They are, on the contrary, realities of the fallen life of the world. They are inherently secular and worldly; they are subject to the power of death; they are aspects of the present, transient, perishing existence of the world.
It is the same with marriage. Marriage is a fallen estate. That does not mean that it is not an honorable estate, but only that it is a relationship subject to death. It is a relationship established in and appropriate for the present age, but not known or, more precisely, radically transcended and transfigured in both the Creation and the Eschaton - in both the beginning and the end of human history. — William Stringfellow, “Instead of Death.” (via locusimperium)
Sometimes the Bible isn't "relatable." Deal with it. - Danielle Shroyer -
The Bible doesn’t exist to please you as its primary audience, or to make you feel understood. It does that sometimes, but that’s not its primary role. Its job is to make you think deeply about the world, and about God, and about your role in it. Its purpose is to form you, and change you- and not just you, but the whole community in which and with which you read it. You can’t expect the Bible to do the work for you. It requires effort, and engagement, and attention. It’s soul work, not beach reading.
Appeals to tradition become deeply unhistorical when they treat doctrinal formulations, creeds, and confessions as if they were permanent features of the landscape, as natural as falling apples and the rising sun. To be deeply historical is to be open to the possibility of another Francis, another Luther, another homoousion. It is to be open to the idiosyncratic individual scholar. Newman was mistaken: To be deep in history is to be open to the possibility of Protestantism. — Peter Leithart
Getting Judaism, and Jesus, Wrong -
Once again, in the attempt to make Jesus relevant to the twenty-first century, another of his followers winds up mischaracterizing first-century Judaism. These seekers after relevance make Jesus’ Jewish context represent everything we don’t like — sexism, elitism, militarism, you name it — and then depict Jesus as the one Jew to stand against his oppressive culture. Jesus can stand very well on his own without having to make Judaism look bad; alas, some of his followers have not yet figured this out.
If we preach Christ, Anglicanism will flourish. If we preach Anglicanism, nothing will flourish. —
Justin Welby (via bethmaynard)
Welby said something I like. :)
Stuck visiting a church treating today as “Independence Day Sunday” with a sermon praising the Christian worldview of the Founders that led to limited government
…it struck me that Paul probably couldn’t get a job teaching at the seminary that taught me about Paul. — Peter Enns (via azspot)
In 2002, I came to the United States for graduate studies. I sought out the evangelical wing of the Episcopal Church but soon discovered that my beliefs conflicted with much of contemporary evangelicalism in the United States. I believed, for example, the debate over contraception had been settled long ago – since that decision should be guided by one’s conscience – and helping the poor is a Christian duty, since every human being is made in the sacred image of God. I was surprised, therefore, to learn that many Christians in the evangelical movement in the United States oppose healthcare for the poor as well as gun-control laws, demonize immigrants, and place the United States Constitution on par with the Bible. Even more surprising was my discovery that the arguments I had often heard African bishops use against LGBTI people were not African in origin. Rather, they were the talking points developed by conservative evangelicals in the United States. —
Rev. Dr. Kapya Kaoma, “American Culture Warriors in Africa: A Guide to the Exporters of Homophobia and Sexism.”
(This is also a nice reminder that labels like “evangelical” do not mean the same thing around the world.)
When Jesus expels demons and heals the sick, he is driving out of creation the powers of destruction, and is healing and restoring created beings who are hurt and sick. The lordship of God, to which the healings witness, restores creation to health. Jesus’ healings are not supernatural miracles in a natural world. They are the only truly ‘natural’ thing in a world that is unnatural, demonized and wounded… . Finally, with the resurrection of Christ, the new creation begins, pars pro toto, with the crucified one. —
(via Ray Ortland)
(Source: naminganimals, via rootedradical)
When the word says, ‘This is My Body,’ be convinced of it and believe it, and look at it with the eyes of the mind. For Christ did not give us something tangible, but even in His tangible things all is intellectual. So too with Baptism: the gift is bestowed through what is a tangible thing, water; but what is accomplished is intellectually perceived: the birth and the renewal. If you were incorporeal He would have given you those incorporeal gifts naked; but since the soul is intertwined with the body, He hands over to you in tangible things that which is perceived intellectually. How many now say, ‘I wish I could see His shape, His appearance, His garments, His sandals.’ Only look! You see Him! You touch Him! You eat Him! — St John Chrysostom ~ Homilies on the Gospel of Matthew (via sebastianmorris)