The primary group identity of all members of the new-covenant community is that they belong to their common Lord and to one another across the globe. Thus their primary allegiance is to that common Lord and to one another, not to any other group or entity, including any nation-state. In other words, the death of Jesus means, for his followers, the death of every form of nationalism. Participation in the new covenant means a change of loyalty.— The Death of the Messiah and the Birth of the New Covenant, page 219 (emphasis original)
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Loyalty to whom?
The New Testament proclaims that the reign of God has already begun in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Therefore members of the new-covenant community formed by his death constitute an alter-culture (an alternative culture) within whichever host culture they find themselves. This theme runs through the New Testament, from each of the Gospels, through Acts and Paul and other letters, to Revelation. Members of the new covenant live in a kind of exile, as resident aliens, constituted by a different charter, the word of the cross. That is, we are a politic before we have a politics. Our primary political activity is to be the church, the new-covenant community shaped by the cross: to worship God truly and to live out the demands of the kingdom of God and the lordship of Jesus.