Wednesday, February 25, 2015

A strange Messiah

As we have examined the practices of faithfulness and love that the predictions of Jesus’ death generate, and that are the essence of participation in that death, we have seen that these practices are all counterintuitive and countercultural. They are also inherently political, if we define that word as referring to the public life of a community. Moreover, these practices also clearly represent a politics of nonviolence, of suffering and of suffering love. This politics would support neither a theology of Roman, imperial domination nor a theology of messianic hatred and violent overthrow, since the “Lord” and the “Messiah” of the passion predictions, and of the New Testament writings more generally, is the Lord who willingly dies at the hands of the imperial authorities after subverting their theology and practices in his life and teaching. A strange sort of Lord and Messiah indeed.— The Death of the Messiah and the Birth of the New Covenant, page 131

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