Bonhoeffer – Act and Being

The entire situation raises the question whether the formalisticactualistic understanding of the freedom and contingency of God in revelation is to be made the foundation of theological thought. In revelation it is not so much a question of the freedom of God—eternally remaining within the divine self, aseity—on the other side of revelation, as it is of God’s coming out of God’s own self in revelation. It is a matter of God’s given Word, the covenant in which God is bound by God’s own action. It is a question of the freedom of God, which finds its strongest evidence precisely in that God freely chose to be bound to historical human beings and to be placed at the disposal of human beings. God is free not from human beings but for them. Christ is the word of God’s freedom. God is present, that is, not in eternal nonobjectivity but—to put it quite provisionally for now—’haveable’, graspable in the Word within the church.

“THE PROBLEM: B. THE PROBLEM OF ACT AND BEING IN THE INTERPRETATION OF REVELATION AND THE CHURCH AS THE SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM.” In Act and Being, edited by Wayne Whitson Floyd, 95-149. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 1931. 


Richard Rohr – Absolute Authority & Inner Authority

Richard Rohr puts words to ideas that I have had swimming around in my head for a while.

Rough Thoughts on ‘Inner Authority and Paul’.
I think I’d like to do a word study on Paul’s use of the word ‘word’ (at least the word ‘word’ that we get in our English translations). I have a theory that our modern use of the ‘The Word of God’ – aka ‘The Bible’, verses, Paul’s use of the word ‘the word of God’ might actually be different. I think (again I haven’t researched this – so don’t quote me) that Paul uses the word ‘Word’ of God to mean: The word given to prophets of the First Testament, as well as the inner voice of God, expressed in Jeremiah 31:33 “I will put my instructions deep within them, and I will write them on their hearts”. I’m not entirely sure where the words of Christ come into the mix, given Paul never meet Jesus, and was probably teaching and preaching well before the Gospel accounts where written. I’m particularly thinking in terms of John’s account, where he introduces Christ as the LOGOS. Also remember that the idea of an individual copy of the bible is a new idea, it’s only been around the last few hundred years. If a person lives to be 100 years old, that’s only 3 people ago.

And why do I find this interesting?
Because I think far too many people have used a narrow view of Paul’s writing, and they throw it around too much and don’t necessarily do the ‘hard’ work of slowing down to stop and listen for the voice from Spirit.

Ben Campbell Johnson, Andrew Dreitcer on discernment

In discernment we seek to uncover our truest and most profound longings, which, we trust, touch God’s longings for us. In the place where our yearning meets God’s yearning, we begin to experience true rest in God, a sense of profound rest and freedom, and a sacred stillness at the centre of our lives. From that place of stillness we can work through the difficulties and challenges that life presents us…. We must continually remind ourselves that discernment has more to do with deepening our relationship with Christ than it does with making right decisions.

Ben Campbell Johnson, Andrew Dreitcer
[Source unknown]

Cynthia Bourgeault – On responding

In any situation in life, confronted by an outer threat or opportunity, you can notice yourself responding inwardly in one of two ways. Either you will brace, harden and resist, or you will soften, open, and yield… Whether it’s a matter of holding your ground in a dispute with your boss, handling a rebellious teenager with tough love, or putting your life on the line for an ideal you believe in… Action flows better when it flows from nonviolence, that is, when it flows from that place of relaxed, inner opening.

Cynthia Bourgeault [Source Unknown]

How we ‘read’ the bible

This week in a new unit that I’m studying, that focus’s on spiritual direction and theological reflection, this idea was put forth. I had previously held this idea within my head, just it wasn’t so eloquent.
So whenever anyone says ‘The bible says…’ the statement is loaded with the following:

“According to my faith tradition and the way we interpret the bible, it says…”

This is partly why the only bible verses I can seem to remember are ridiculous ones. Like Psalm 137, verse 9. Just go and quote that one around out of context and see how many friends you have.

Gregory Beale on The language of prophecy

Prophecy portrays the future with language that is understandable to the prophet’s contemporary readership; the prophetic language of Isaiah employs imagery corresponding to the earthly social and cultural realities of his own day, which he could understand to describe realities of the new creation that were to be fulfilled in way he probably could not have imagined.

Beale, G. K. The Book of Revelation: A Commentary on the Greek Text. New International Greek Testament Commentary (Grand Rapids, Mich.). Grand Rapids, Mich., Carlisle: W.B. Eerdmans, Paternoster Press, 1999.

Quotes – Post-modern Pilgrims – Leonard Sweet

Monsignor Romano Guardini: “‘Today the modern age is essentially over.’ The church was on the right track, he argued, but riding the wrong train”. xiii

John R. W. Stott on ‘double listening’: “the faculty of listening to two voices at the same time, the voice of God through Scripture and the voices of men and women around us. These voices will often contradict one another, but our purpose in listening to theme both is to discover how they relate to each other. DOuble listening is indispensable to Christian discipleship and Christian mission” p. xvi

“The history of civilizations is the history of the human imagination.” p. xix

“There is a difference between trailblazing and trendsetting. There is a difference between the spirit of newness and the spirt of nowness. The Geist in our Zeit must be the Heilige Geist. The spirit of our times must be the Holy Spirit.” p48

“If you remember nothing else in this book, remember this call for the church to recover tradition. We can become a “traditional” church by nurturing a culture that is identifiably Christian and postmodern at the same time, not one that looks like postmodern culture itself.” p48

(Definition of zeitgeist –

“The postmodern church seems to have lost the plot to the “stories of Jesus.” Could it be because the redemption story was told in the modern era more by “creeds” and “laws” than by “parables” – narrative-wrapped images?” p88

“Metaphors generate a spirit that quickly captures and charges space. That is why the Jesus method of communication was not the exegesis of words but the exegesis of images: “the kingdom of heaven is like…”” p95

Sweet, Leonard I. Post-Modern Pilgrims : First Century Passion for the 21st Century World. Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman, 2000.

Quote – N.T. Wright on the definition word Justification

[Justification] has regularly been made to do duty for the entire picture of God’s reconciling action towards the human race, covering everything from God’s free love and grace, through the sending of the son to die and rise again for sinners, through the preaching of the gospel, the work of the spirit, the arousal of faith in human hearts and minds, the development of Christian character and conduct, the assurance of ultimate salvation, and the safe passage through final judgment to that destination. p65

Wright, N. T. Justification : God’s Plan and Paul’s Vision. Downers Grove, Ill.: IVP Academic, 2009.

30 days of yoga – Day 3

I didn’t want to leave the warmth of my jeans in exchange for my bike shorts to show up today – day 1 the temperature was around 30oC, today, it’s closer to 13.

But I did, and I’m glad I did.

Today’s practice featured lots of balancing on one foot. Unfortunately my weak arches kept collapsing and I was falling everywhere. But they’ll never strengthen if I don’t try. I hope that they strengthen as a by product of this practice.