This is an episode of the Third Wave Podcast. The views contained here are those of the people you hear speak and those involved in producing the podcast. It is, however, worth hearing and provides some interesting perspectives and raises equally important questions. Continue reading →
The authentic church will always appear on the edge and to be on the edge or at the edge is to be in or close to the wilderness. The authentic church exists at the edge of the wilderness because in the Old Testament and also in the New Testament, the wilderness is the place of revelation but it is also the place in which people experience the absence of God. It is when we step into or a forced into the wilderness that we experience God.
In the Bible the wilderness is an ambiguous place in which there is isolation and revelation, there is presence and there is a sense of absence, God appears when everything else disappears. It is a place of wondering and wandering.
This two edged, double meaning of the term, wilderness is extremely helpful to us here. Continue reading →
One of the challenges for anyone reading the gospels is making sense of what seems to be more than one story unfolding. The gospels are instruction books for the disciple. The story tellers use Jesus’ story to illustrate what the disciple has to do in order to achieve the goal of discipleship but there is a tension because the gospels, two of them, begin with the birth narrative and the claim that Jesus was divine. We then have Jesus who is divine and yet human going through baptism, the experience in the wilderness, the transfiguration, in which it would appear that the divine and the human are somehow coming together. People have asked about this. Is it contradiction, confusion, different Jesus traditions coming together, or is there a way to reconcile and make sense of what appears to be two stories being told simultaneously? Continue reading →
In an introductory workshop in which I have been involved twice in the last few months we have been at pains to emphasise the importance of recognising that Jesus of Nazareth is a human being and that what we see in him is the Logos about which the prologue of John’s Gospel speaks. In discussion afterwards it has become clear that we have to be careful of the vocabulary we use to describe what is going on. In the end, of course, we cannot describe the indescribable and we engage with this at a deeper level than thought. Continue reading →