Saturday, May 10, 2008
Hope or Not
The above quote is from 'A Basic Guide to Eschatology' by Millard J. Erickson (1977;1998). It's from a chapter looking at the 'Theology of Hope' of which a main founder is Jurgen Moltmann.
Bringing it in to more threechordwonder language, Moltmann is saying that if Christianity is to avoid being consigned to the past and forgotten, it needs to engage with the real, everyday issues people face including life issues and world issues such as the environment. The church getting stuck in!
This theology was developed in the 60's and, just over 40 years on, how has the church done in engaging with the issues Moltmann raises?
Well, not very well.
We still have so many cossetted churches and structures that refuse to face the real world. Even movements like 'emerging church' face problems, but maybe from the other end of the scale. The movement needs to find a balance between engaging with the world and engaging with God as He is in the bible. Too many expressions of 'emerging church' have fallen in to their 'new' traditions of one word names/candles/projectors/chilled tunes/stations, which for me is not what the 'global conversation' used to be...maybe that's just me though...
Jesus is our example, He spoke to all people, groups and divisions. He spoke truth in to all of them and challenged them when they were wrong.
When was the last time you or I challenged our political system with any vigor. Are we engaged with it as Christians? The country doesn't seem to be engaged as a whole. How can we be a part of re-engaging people?
Now obviously there are plenty of Christians working in politics, social justice etc etc but my point is, how much does Christianity itself do to help put people in those situations? how much hope does it place in God's world? and how much does it allow us to become 'pew fodder'?
Are we just over reliant on God's grace on this one?