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The Peruvian Giving video was tears in the eyes wonderful.JESUS LIVES HIS DEATHOFFERS YOU NEW LIFEJacob of the wookies was being generous. Paradoxical certainly. Mysterious certainly. More dangerously, incomprehensible.But then, how can anyone say something about the mystery of Jesus and Easter in ten words or less, to a world which doesn't like paradoxes (they don't go well with 10 second sound bites) and which doesn't accept that there should be mysteries about anything?How is the paradox of Easter put in context for people struggling to make sense of 30+ students and others at a university being murdered for no reason by another student? What are the people who put that sign outside their church trying to say to people struggling with bi-polar parents, family conflicts, bereavement, cancer, terminally ill parents in awful nursing homes, job loss etc?There is Tom Wright's view of Jesus passing through death and out the other side (and seeming to revel in the freedom of His resurrection body). Perhaps that makes it a tiny bit comprehensible for some.There is the reaction of some men (and women) to this paradox, and how they have bet everything on their faith in this incomprehensible mystery. There are the martyrs (like Romero, Bonhoeffer, Kolbe and King) trusting their lives to this mystery.As for me, perhaps like you I wish that I had the words which could explain to intelligent minds like Jacob's what Easter is about and why some people make such a fuss about it. But then, I don't really understand this paradoxical mystery either. So perhaps we are left with another mysterious proclamation:Kristos Anesti!
Jacob did (I think accidentally) stumble upon a truth when he saidmeaning that I can somehow obtain new life from his deadness. There is a real sense in that Christ is only available to us because he died.It is interesting (and a little disturbing) to see someone critique the faith from the viewpoint of one who doesn't appear to have been exposed to the basic concepts
The Jacob in the above two posts is here http://bentmywookie.blogspot.com/2007/04/paradoxical-church-sign.html
interesting (and a little disturbing) to see someone critique the faith from the viewpoint of one who doesn't appear to have been exposed to the basic conceptsI think that's my point.Statements like JESUS LIVES HIS DEATHOFFERS YOU NEW LIFEmay mean something for those who have been exposed to the basic concepts. For those who haven't - and that is the majority of our fellow Australians (and Englishmen) - the words in that sign outside a church must sound like gibberish.Philip Yancey relates a story about John Stott. John Stott was speaking of his book Basic Christianity, and how that book grew out of lectures which Stott gave to university students in England in the 50s and 60s. Those lectures would be given in a church and Stott would stand before the students in collar and robe to deliver them. Stott said that now (in the 90s) he would have to deliver those lectures in a different setting and would have to structure their content in a very different way. In the 50s and 60s, he could assume that the students attending would have some basic knowledge about Jesus and Christianity. He could also assume that the students would feel comfortable about coming into a church to hear them. That's not the case now. His lectures (and a rewritten Basic Christianity) would now have to assume that the target audience knew nothing about Jesus and about Christianity, and what little that they had heard anecdotally and through the media would probably be distorted, misrepresentative and plain wrong - so he might even have to start in negative territory, first correcting some basic errors in knowledge about Christianity.
I think that this is very interesting.certainly the point about translating the gospel into understandable terminology is critical.But my point about Wookie's cryptic comment...JESUS LIVES HIS DEATHis actually that this sort of paradoxical comment does engage the unformed mind.Is this ther nature of the paradox, and why Jesus presents so much of his stuff in this way.When I was a teacher I understood very quickly that puzzling kids with cryptic comments is a good way to get them to think for themselves.They are quite capable fo grappling with "Who made God?" They may not get the 'right' answer but the mere fact that they can begin to articulate contradiction and explore the subtlety of such a paradox....means that they can also explore truth.These are not perfectly formed thoughts, I don't think Jesus worked like that either...he ratrher seduces people with a moving image, idea.....How can someone go into the womb again?yes, much to ponder.
But my point about Wookie's cryptic comment ... JESUS LIVES HIS DEATH ... is actually that this sort of paradoxical comment does engage the unformed mind.Is this the nature of the paradox, and why Jesus presents so much of his stuff in this way?I'd never really thought of it that way (must be my post-modern paradigm) - using paradoxes to engage 21st Century post-modern minds, just as Jesus used them to engage 1st Century rural Jewish minds. Perhaps that approach has worked down through the centuries, irrespective of our cultural mind sets.Paradox (related in any way to Parable, other than having the same 4 letters at the beginning of the noun?). Another tool for constantly challenging people to explore truth. Good point.
One relationship Trevor between parable and paradox is that real life full of parable and paradox.I think the prefix para is what does indeed connect them...it means alongside as in parallel in Greek...but can rather have the force of beside or against in Latin.So paradox- is against another dox which is opinion or ideaand ble is bola (like parabola)is application or story...so it parllels the story
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