Tag Archives: Incarnation

22 April – No anaemic God

View or print as a PDF

Easter 4

1 John 1:5-2:2
Psalm 23
John 10:11-18

Next week, of course, we mark once more the ANZAC landing at Gallipoli and, by extension, the war service of hundreds of thousands of Australians and New Zealanders, and others. Familiar stories are retold and new ones are uncovered, expounding the courage and feats of people in extreme circumstances.

Not far from the heart of these accounts is the language of sacrifice as a way of characterising what soldiers and others do in giving up their lives or wellbeing for comrades or for the community on whose behalf they fought – for us. Such extraordinary self-sacrifice is rightly marked with gratitude by those who have benefitted from it – even us today, after so long, whatever we make of the wars which have gone before, however much we agree or not with the fact that they were fought.

Now, the reason for raising all of this is not quite that ANZAC Day is coming, but that the theme of sacrifice appears twice in the passage we have heard (again) today:

‘…he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins’ (2.2); ‘the blood of Jesus [the] Son cleanses us from all sin’ (1.7)

This is uncomfortable language for many in our modern and enlightened times, not least in the church. This discomfort arises because Scriptural sacrifice is foreign to us, despite its familiarity after so long and despite our willingness to borrow the language for something like war service. John – whether he was a Jew or a Gentile (allowing that he may not have been the apostle John, as many scholars hold) – would have imbibed with mother’s milk an understanding of ritual sacrifice which held great sense and conviction for him. He wrote of such sacrifice because he knew about it, saw it, had participated in it. We, however, really only speak of such sacrifice because the likes of John wrote about it. We no longer do or see done what they did and saw. We echo what they say when we speak of sacrifice and, because it is only an echo, it can sound hollow or simply come out wrong. Sacrifice is, simply, not how we understand the world to work and so we struggle to use such language with conviction.

But we cannot leave the matter there. At dawn services around the country on Wednesday the words of Jesus will be quoted: ‘No greater love has anyone than to lay down his life for his friends’ (John 15.13). I suspect that it appeals to us that Jesus gives up his life for his friends, even us. Or, at least it makes sense to us that Jesus might do this, as we imagine our soldiers do.

Yet, if Jesus’ self-sacrifice is for his friends, from what does he save them? The intention of the self-sacrifice of the soldier is clear; her death saves the comrade-in-arms, or weakens the enemy. In the case of Jesus, however, what is the threat from which his friends are to be saved? The horrifying thing – especially for the likes of us – is that the threat can only be God; Jesus dies to protect the disciples from God.

And here we strike the fundamental objection to sacrificial language: that God is said to have stipulated sacrifice for such protection – the blood of lambs, bulls and doves, and ultimately the blood of Jesus himself. The problem is whether God might just be a bloody God. This does not sell well.

Our hesitation here ought not to surprise us, because it is not only a theological hesitation; it is not a problem for only the church with its cross. We – society and church together – hesitate in the same way when it comes to speaking of the sacrifice of those wounded or killed in war. It seems obvious that we could borrow the words of Jesus to characterise the casualties of war, yet we are mistaken if we do so. Scriptural notions of sacrifice have nothing to do with self-sacrifice. The sacrificial victim is a third party in an exchange between the principle actors – the priest who sacrifices and the God who is appeased. If we were to speak properly (and honestly) of sacrifice in relation to war we would have to say that is not the soldiers who make the sacrifice but the community or nation which offers them up. This is surely the meaning of conscription, on the one hand, and white feathers on the other. Nations and kings go to war, not their soldiers. The lives of combatants are the sacrifice we are prepared to make – we, who cannot qualify as the sacrifice by virtue of being too young, too old, too rich or too important.

But we do not speak this way when we commemorate war service. It is very hard to admit that it is better for us that one die for the people than that the whole nation should be lost. And so we generally can’t admit it. And because we can’t, it is difficult to admit that God’s purported stipulation of sacrifice might be just. Surely God is not like us, only open where we are covert?

In fact, even if we are bloody, God is not. Sacrificial blood does not buy forgiveness; God cannot be bought. But if God is not bloody – does not demand blood – neither is God anaemic. John’s insistence on the cross goes with his insistence that Jesus is the Son, is at the heart of God (cf. John 1.18). This death – this blood – is squarely in the middle of the God-humankind relationship.

But, unlike all other human sacrifice – whether the soldier on the field, the neglected spouse, the molested child or the ignored refugee – this death is not finally mere tragedy. God is light (1.5), we considered last week, and the cross of the Risen One is that light. This is the truly difficult thing at the heart of Christian confession: that a tragic failure might become a healing word, that the justice of God (1.9) might meet this failure with forgiveness.

John, with most of the New Testament, borrows the language and logic of sacrifice but it is only passingly useful if we insist on being biblical literalists, speaking Scriptural language with too thick an accent. If God is free – unbound by anything outside of God – then God is not bound by a sacrificial economy of exchange, such that Jesus ‘had’ to die on the cross. Ritual sacrifice in the Old Testament only ever served as a kind of cloak covering the truly important thing, a Tabernacle housing the incomprehensible glory which cannot be gazed upon directly. That glory is God’s freedom to love and heal those who imagine that death is the way to life, even God’s own death.

The miracle of Easter is not that a blood debt is paid. It is that the blood we spill does not stain but washes clean.

And we are those who are washed.

15 April – Not afraid of the dark

View or print as a PDF

Easter 3

1 John 1:5-2:2
Psalm 4
Luke 24:36b-48

It is an assumption at the heart of contemporary Western religious (and non-religious) thought that God is simple. This means that God is one, undivided, without paradox or complexity in Godself. Not all religious thought holds to the simplicity of God as a basic principle (think, for example, of the complexity of the Greek mythological world) but it is fundamental for people like us in places like this, and it has ancient roots.

(To say that God is simple is not to say that speaking about God is always thought to be simple, but the difficultly of speaking of God is usually attributed to our poor articulation or the built-in poverty of human language rather than to how and how God actually is).

An instance of the idea of the simplicity of God appears in our reading from 1 John today: ‘God is light, and in him there is no darkness at all.’ This is not much different from, ‘God is one, and in God there is no division’ or ‘God is pure, without blemish.’ Christians need have no particular problem with such ways of talking about God, although this will depend on the consequences drawn from a particular statement of God’s simplicity.

Such consequences are just the issue with which John wrestles in our text today. Any statement about God which is worth making will have consequences for us. More specifically, anything we say about God will imply certain things to be said about us: theology implies anthropology.

Reading between the lines in our passage this morning, the general affirmation that ‘God is light’ has been extended by some in that community to imply that there is light without darkness in those who believe in, or reside within, or walk with such a God. The simplicity of God is extended to a simplicity in God’s people: God is whole, undivided, pure and light – and so are we, the people who know this about God.

To this John has to say, No: ‘if we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us’ (1.8). But crucial here is why John says this. The reason is not, to get just a little anachronistic, paedophile priests. John is not looking around at the church and seeing that it is still caught in the grip of sin. It is undeniable that sin continues in those who confess that God is light, but the good news about Jesus – that through him sin is forgiven (1.9, 2.2) – is not an answer to our sense for the sin which is in and about us. If it were, the sinfulness of humankind would be the first word of the church. Indeed, the church sometimes begins here but without benefit for anyone, because God is then constructed out of our darkness.

But John doesn’t contrast an idea that God is light with an idea of human sinfulness, one abstract thought to counter another. Rather, his awareness of human sin comes from the God who is light: ‘if we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar and his word is not in us.’ (It’s not quite clear whether the ‘him’ here refers to God or to Christ but the distinction does not matter much for John’s argument). God has said something, and the question is whether what has been said is true or not.

What, then, does God ‘say’?

God ‘says’: Jesus, in the flesh.

For John, the nature of God as light and the sinful character of human existence are not contradictory ideas to be balanced with each other but are, rather, to be found together in the person of Jesus. It becomes clearer further into the letter that the problem of how to understand human sin is caught up with the question of who Jesus is and how he was. In particular, the question of the humanity – the fleshliness – of Jesus seems to have been the basis of split in the community: those who denied that Jesus was the full, fleshy incarnation of God and died a fleshy death on the cross left John and his community. (We will likely consider that more closely as we move further into the letter).

But John insists that the cross cannot be set aside; whatever the brilliance of the light which God is, there is a bloody mess in its midst. If God is light, then the crisis of the cross is light, is part of a Christian experience and understanding of God. When John says ‘God is light’ he means that the ‘crossed’ God is light – the God and Father of, and with, Jesus the crucified.

And if the cross is a part of what we have to say about God, then it is part of what we say about ourselves before God. Which is why the centre of all Christian conviction is not human sin left behind, but forgiveness – the point at which light shines in the darkness and the darkness does not overcome it, though the darkness continues (John 1.5).  ‘We have an advocate with the Father,’ John says, ‘Jesus Christ the righteous.’

Life in this God is a confessional life – a life which confesses how God is (this is our Creed) – and then confesses whatever shadows in us God’s light shows to require the confession of contrition. If Jesus Christ the righteous could be crucified by those who saw the cross as God’s righteous judgement on him, then the power of sin in human life is more than can be imagined.

John is in no doubt – and neither should we be – that if anyone is in Christ then she or he ought no longer to sin. But the ‘ought’ is contravened not only by moral weakness in us; this is too simple. The ‘ought’ awaits also the final consummation of all things, when God’s light does not transport us on a rainbow out of the world but makes us-in-the-world new.

Our part is simply to be made new, and new, and new, as often as it is necessary, and so to become a pointer to the promise that God will restore all things. We are then, not afraid of the dark – the dark in us or around us – because God overcomes it, and will overcome it.

As John says, ‘We have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world’. On him we ever rest, as we get on with the business of living.

Let us, then, rest in him, and get on with it.

4 March – As good as it gets

View or print as a PDF

Lent 3

Exodus 20:1-17
Psalm 19
John 2:13-22

Last week I spoke about How not to Fall on Your Face before God or, at least, how to minimise the pain of the gift of being in the presence of God.

A first falling on your face before God is unavoidable. This is the form of meeting with God and knowing that it is God we meet. Such a falling marks the gift of God – that God wills to meet us with grace and blessing.

But, in the stories of Abraham and Peter, we saw a second kind of falling before God which marked not God’s gift but human presumption. Given that falling on your face is a painful experience – even when in holy awe – the best way not to fall on your face in this second way is not to get up again after the first fall.

Yet it remains the case that we do get up again. And again. And again, even if each time it – and the subsequent fall – is in quite different ways.

Our readings today relate to two of the gifts of God – the gift of the law and the gift of the Temple – two occasions for an appropriate falling before God. These are marks of God’s covenant with Israel, pointers to God’s presence to Israel, and to how Israel is to be present to God. Each is, unequivocally, a blessing, conveying the Who and the How and the Where of God’s relationship with Israel. The life of the people of God is filled with such markers – commandments and ethics, temples and liturgies, creeds and confessions.

But, having been bowled over by the gift of God, the people of God then climb to their feet. This is what we do. Commandments become separated from the one who commands them. (We might think of all those lists of the Commandments in churches which omit the crucial opening lines telling who it is who gives the commandments, and what he has done). And the life of a Temple becomes separated from the One to be met within it; we don’t need gospel readings to tell us that this happens. This is the cause of the wrong kind of falling on our face: separating the gift from the giver.

There is nothing wrong with Temples and creeds and liturgies and codes of conduct. In fact, all human existence is filled with them in one form or another, so it ought to be no surprise that God uses such things to deal with us, or provides them that we might deal with God. In fact we are right to be suspicious of talk about God which denies that God uses – even needs – words and community and buildings in this way.

This is to say that the Temple and the Commandments matter more than we are likely to imagine, for they are sacramental. Sacraments are things which look like one thing but are in fact something else. What is important in this is that the ‘something else’ is not inherent in the sacrament; it comes from God. God gives the sacrament and it only ‘works’ when it remains God’s. God uses the mundane – a bath for baptism, a meal for thanksgiving, a temple, an ethical code – to get to us, and that we might get to God.

The basis for our saying this is in what Jesus throws to us religious in the Temple story this morning: ‘Tear down this temple, and I will build it up again in three days’. Christians, of course, know what this means because the text tells us: Jesus casts himself as the temple, and there’s a hint here at his coming passion and resurrection.

But this is not enough. There is more here than the shift of the presence of God from the stones of the temple to the flesh of Jesus. ‘Tear this temple down, and I will build it up again’. The temple to be built up is the same temple which was torn down. The Jesus who is resurrected is the Jesus who is crucified, who stands before the temple authorities and the freshly minted disciples in all his ordinariness. This is tantamount to saying, ‘This is what the rebuilt temple will look like: it doesn’t get any better than this’.

And that is why Jesus is crucified: because we want it to be better than this. ‘What sign can you show us for doing this?’, comes the challenge to Jesus after he has taken the whip to the temple marketplace, and he responds, ‘Tear it down and I’ll build it up’. But the sign is not the dazzling miracle of a resurrection – a neat enough trick in itself.  The sign is that the risen one is the very one who stands before them in the Temple courtyard. Knock me down, and I will get up again. God looks like this ordinary Jesus. Or like a Temple. Or like Commandments on stone tablets.

The extraordinary character of the work of God in Jesus is in the ordinariness of Jesus: this body, this flesh, this hungry stomach, these dirty feet, this bloody nakedness on a cross. All these things God can make a temple. To declare as we do at Christmas, that the Word became flesh, is not to say merely that it became meat. This flesh was not only body and blood but was all that become body and blood, and all that body and blood become. The Word became all that we need in order to be ourselves, and all that we create.

I am, Jesus says, what the Temple and the Commandments and the prayers and the sacrifices and the festivals – or even you – can be when God is active in them, and in you.

To fall on our face for the wrong reason is to have separated the gift from the giver, and usually precisely because we think that this is required for God’s own sake. Think again of Abraham’s derisive laughter and Peter’s rebuke of Jesus, and their proposals of how God might do things better. And so in the end a crucifixion seems necessary for God’s own sake, for here we assert that Jesus could not possibly be the sanctuary of God.

The gospel, however, is that God will not be separated from the gift, and comes and comes and comes again to reclaim our flesh as his own. This is the resurrection of Jesus. Here God declares not only who Jesus was, but that how Jesus – his ordinariness – is part of his identity as the divine Son. In this sense, the resurrection must be of a recognisable ‘body’ with a history, and not merely a ghostly apparition.

Having reclaimed the gift of fleshliness as his own, God then gives the gift again. And this is our resurrection. We are raised into the ordinariness of our lives: our work, our relationships, our temples and codes. These are the places where God will meet us because they are where we are.

You have torn it down, God says, but I will raise it up again and give it back to you. And then you will know me, and be amazed.

LitBit Commentary – James K A Smith on the Call to Worship

LitBits Logo - 2

Litbit: The congregation gathers in response to a call to worship, which is the fundamental vocation of being human. God is calling out and constituting a people who will look “peculiar” in this broken world because they have been called to be renewed image bearers of God – to take and reembrace our creational vocation, now empowered by the Spirit to do so.

James K. A Smith, Desiring the Kingdom.


How to use LitBit Features and Commentaries.

25 December – Christmas against Christmas

View or print as a PDF

Christmas Day

Hebrews 1:1-4, 5-12
Psalm 98
John 1:1-14

With Christmas comes, without fail, the poignant reflection piece of the newspaper columnist.

The first I read this year was by Amanda Vanstone. It was a disappointment and the others didn’t improve much from there. But then what else could these pieces be if indeed there is any truth in what the church confesses about the baby in the manger? For we confess that everything we desire is given there. It is scarcely believable, but nonetheless it is the point of being in church on a Monday. So if, with Vanstone, most of the rest of the world, and most of the church most of the time – if, with all, we turn away from that gift, we must then find something to give ourselves. What that self-gift might be is precisely the subject of the Christmas reflection piece: the discovery, the revelation, of the stillpoint in the chaos. If the church is hypocritical and irrelevant, if family traditions are too burdensome or evaporating before our eyes, if gift-giving is corrupted by materialistic commercialism, if death looms to overshadow our celebrations, then how desperate we become for the one thing which will transcend all of this. Where is the infinite thing, beyond the failure of our best efforts, our ideals and our dreams, which will meet our yearning for something solid and reliable and enduring? It will not be found in average newspaper Christmas reflections. These, like all exclusively human endeavours, merely propose more that we can do for a better experience of the world. And they imagine that, for the first time in history, this new utopia will not sink beneath the waves of moral failure, our failure to do. The poignancy of such reflections at Christmas (or any) time is in their necessity – for they speak a truth – and in their hopelessness, for they cannot realise any further truth.

As a way towards the answer of Christmas to all our disappointment with Christmas, a reading from the Danish thinker, Søren Kierkegaard. Kierkegaard’s concern here is what a believer looks like; this believer he names “the knight of faith,” in the sense of “champion of faith.” What features distinguish her from anyone else? How does the “heavenly” manifest in the way he conducts himself in the world? How does the longed-for infinite occur in the desperately finite?

“I candidly admit that in my experience I have not found any reliable example of the knight of faith… People commonly travel around the world to see rivers and mountains, new stars, birds of rare plumage, queerly deformed fishes, ridiculous breeds of men … and they think they have seen something. This does not interest me. But if I knew where there was such a knight of faith, I would make a pilgrimage to him on foot, for this prodigy interests me absolutely…

“As I’ve said, I have not found any such person, but I can well think him. Here he is. Acquaintance made, I am introduced to him. The moment I set eyes on him I instantly push him from me, I myself leap backwards, I clasp my hands and say half aloud, “Good Lord, is this the man? Is it really he? Why, he looks like a tax-collector!” However, it is the man after all. I draw closer to him, watching his least movements to see whether he shows any sign of the least telegraphic message from the infinite, a glance, a look, a gesture, a note of sadness, a smile, which be­trays the infinite in its contrast with the finite. No! I examine his figure from tip to toe to see if there might not be a cranny through which the infinite was peeping. No! He is solid through and through.

“One can discover nothing of [an] aloof and superior nature … He takes de­light in everything, and whenever one sees him taking part in a particular pleasure, he does it with the persistence which is the mark of the earthly man whose soul is absorbed in such things. He tends to his work… He takes a holiday on Sunday. He goes to church… In the afternoon he walks to the forest. He takes delight in every­thing he sees…

“Toward evening he walks home, his gait is as strident as that of the postman. On his way he reflects that his wife has surely a special little warm dish prepared for him… Actually, she hasn’t, but strangely enough, it is quite the same to him.

“…he is interested in everything that goes on, in a rat which slips under the curb, in the children’s play, and this with the nonchalance of a girl of sixteen. And yet he is no genius, for in vain I have sought in him the incommensurability of genius. In the evening he smokes his pipe; to look at him one would swear that it was the grocer over the way vegetating in the twilight…

“And yet, and yet—actually I could become furious over it, for envy if for no other reason—­this man has made and every instant is making the movements of infinity. …he has drained the cup of life’s profound sadness, he knows the bliss of the infinite, he senses the pain of renouncing everything, the dearest things he possesses in the world, and yet finiteness tastes to him just as good as to one who never knew anything higher, … as though the finite life were the surest thing of all.

“…He constantly makes the move­ments of infinity, but he does this with such correctness and assurance that he constantly gets the finite out of it, and there is not one moment when one has a notion of anything else.

“It is supposed to be the most difficult task for a dancer to leap into a definite posture in such a way that there is not a second when he is grasping after the posture, but by the leap itself he stands fixed in that posture. Perhaps no dancer can do it—that is what this knight does.

“…to be able to fall down in such a way that the same second it looks as if one were standing and walking, to transform the leap of life into a walk, absolutely to express the sublime in the pedestrian—that only the knight of faith can do—and this is the one and only miracle.[1]

Kierkegaard points us to a humanity which lives the freedom of the eternal and yet looks just like an ordinary piece of the world: the one and only miracle. But as a miracle, it is beyond us. This is the pathos of all exhortations to do better at Christmas time, or any time: only a miracle will do, and we are not miracle workers.

Yet this is precisely the miracle of Christmas.

The church has long spoken of the “incarnation” of God in Jesus, imagining for the most part that there would have been something about him indicating that he was different – Kierkegaard’s cranny through which the infinite peeps. Even the Scriptures do this in their Christmas narratives, trimming the story with glimpses of heaven: a virginal conception, choirs of angels and a star of wonder with royal beauty bright.

Yet to say Jesus was human is to say, with Kierkegaard, that he was solid though and through, that he was in every respect like us – unremarkable but for the way in which he met God and God met him. This meeting was the play of the finite and limited with the infinite and unbounded such as Kierkegaard describes. What we’ve come to call the “divinity” of Jesus was evident only in his extraordinary humanity, which was his extraordinary meeting of God – for what meeting God does is cause the world to be itself. Our poignant Christmas reflections spring from the experience that we are not ourselves, and exhort us to perform the miracle of creating ourselves.

But for us to be ourselves is for us to be relieved of the burden of performing miracles, relieved of the requirement that we make real for ourselves the sublime in the midst of the mundane, relieved of the demand that we cause the infinite to be visible through some cranny.

This is incarnation, and sacrament. This is Christmas against Christmas: gift against our tired exchanges, grace against hard-earned favour, aid against wearing demand; the infinite in the finite, dwelling among us and us invited to dwell in it.

In the beginning was the Word, John writes.

In him was life, and the life was light.

The Word became Flesh. And we have seen his glory: the glory of a human being fully alive.

Would this not be everything we need? Do we not long to be our very selves, and yet to be located in, connected to, part of the whole – the more than us – but not overwhelmed by it?

Christmas marks just such a humanity as the gift of God in Jesus, whether under a crown, on a cross or in a cradle, whether with sceptre, under scourge or in a stable (TIS 321): the miracle of a leap of life expressed in a mere walk, the sublime in its natural habitat: our ordinary.

Christmas would give us heaven because it would give us the world, each without poignant loss.

Now, and in the year about to begin, let’s take them both.


[1] Largely drawn from the translation of Walter Lowrie (Kierkegaard’s Fear and Trembling, Doubleday 1954, p49ff), although emphases added and language “adjusted” for a modern ear, with some guidance from Robert Payne’s OUP translation (pp.48ff).

LitBit Commentary – Gordon Lathrop on the Eucharist 1

LitBits Logo - 2

…the meal that we keep, in its intensity and focus, its staple food and festive drink, its ceremonial welcome of a wide circle, might suggest that we are consuming magical food, food of the angels, a heavenly banquet, food that will grant us immortality. Then we hear the content of the feast: “the body of Christ, the blood of Christ, given for you.” A specific, real death is proclaimed, and if “immortality” is given, then this is a new kind of freedom from death, coming in a world-affirming, bounded, palpable, and mortal way, here.

From Gordon Lathrop, The pastor: a spirituality, p.4


How to use LitBit Features and Commentaries.

LitBit Commentary – Gordon Lathrop on Baptism 2

LitBits Logo - 2

The basic baptismal paradoxes include these: here, in this bath, we are united with the weak and foolish One who is God’s very wisdom and strength; so, here we are put to death in order to live; here we are identified with the death of Christ in order to be raised with him; here our dry bones take on flesh and are made to breathe with the Spirit; here we are washed in a purity bath that makes us dirtier — that is, here we are joined to Christ who is joined with all the unclean ones of the world. For Christians, life in vocation always involves immersion in these paradoxes.

From Gordon Lathrop, The pastor: a spirituality, p.17



How to use LitBit Features and Commentaries.

LitBit Commentary – Timothy Radcliffe on the Eucharist 2

LitBits Logo - 2

Think of the domination, exploitation and pollution of man and nature that goes with bread, all the bitterness of competition and class struggle, all the organized selfishness of tariffs and price-rings, all the wicked oddity of a world distribution that brings plenty to some and malnutrition to others, bringing them to that symbol of poverty we call the bread line.  And wine too – fruit of the vine and work of human hands, the wine of holidays and weddings … This wine is also the bottle, the source of some of the most tragic forms of human degradation: drunkenness, broken homes, sensuality, debt.  What Christ bodies himself into is bread and wine like this, and he manages to make sense of it, to humanize it.  Nothing human is alien to him.  If we bring bread and wine to the Lord’s Table, we are implicating ourselves in being prepared to bring to God all that bread and wine mean.  We are implicating ourselves in bringing to God, for him to make sense of, all which is broken and unlovely.  We are implicating ourselves in the sorrow as well as the joy of the world.

Timothy Radcliffe, Why Go to Church? p.130


How to use LitBit Features and Commentaries.

LitBit Commentary – Rowan Williams on the Eucharist 12

LitBits Logo - 2

“The Eucharist demonstrates that material reality can become charged with Jesus’ life, and so proclaimed hope for the whole world of matter. The material, habitually used as a means of exclusion, of violence, can become a means of communication. Matter as hoarded or dominated or exploited speaks of the distortion and ultimate severance of relationship, and as such can only be a sign of death… The matter of the Eucharist, carrying the presence of the risen Jesus, can only be a sign of life, of triumph over the death of exclusion and isolation”

Rowan Williams, Resurrection, p.112f

How to use LitBit Features and Commentaries.

« Older Entries Recent Entries »