Friday, October 01, 2010

The old-new narrative

Today's excerpt from Global Awakening:

These [1998 Chinese house church] documents reject the Marxist master narrative of a religion as a poison or opiate, the European master narrative of the church as a department of the state seeking to provide sacred canopy under which national life is conducted, as well as the American master narrative of capitalism and unfettered individualism.

Their new story is an older and more global story. Part of the new narrative apologetic is crafting a new story about a heroic struggle against two dominate powers of a state church and a totalitarian state. as such the house churches are tapping into the traditional narrative resources used by Luke in Acts and Eusebius in his history of the church in the first three centuries...

While formal treatises to government officials seemed futile in the second and third centuries, they did accomplish two things. Christianity increased its popular appeal even as it maximized the conditions of growth by ensuring that government opposition as episodic rather than sustained.— Global Awakening, pages 195-196

<idle musing>
I like the first paragraph, showing the shortcomings of the 3 main meta-narratives people have to choose from. There is a fourth: The kingdom of God; what a strangely biblical idea :)
</idle musing>

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