Saturday, November 01, 2008

Sharing From My Reading

I have two file folders full of notes from books that have deeply impacted me over the past 15 years or so. I get excited when I pull out those notes and read through them. It makes me want to share those thoughts with others, even if others may at times disagree. So I think I will start using this forum for that purpose. At least for awhile. I'll start with the Politics of Jesus by John Howard Yoder, because, after all, this is a time when we all have politics on the brain. This is refreshing stuff that won't help you at all with your decision come Tuesday, November 4! Yet, maybe indirectly, it will help after all.

One of his basic points, as I remember it, is that instead of trying to control the world around you through government, the church (that's us) should just do what Jesus did: don't resist the powers that be, and if they kill you (so to speak), then trust God to raise you up and help you overcome it all. It is a bit of a call to pacifism, yet once you read it, you might find it more appealing (and, frankly, more Biblical) then you used to.

"There is nothing greater that the Church can do for society than to be a center in which small groups of persons are together entering into this experience of renewal and giving each other mutual support in Christian living and action in secular spheres."

"When read carefully, none of the biblical apocalypses . . . is about either pie in the sky or Russians in Mesopotamia. They are about how the crucified Jesus is a more adequate key to understanding what God is about in the real world of empires and armies and markets than is the ruler of Rome (or, the United States), with all his supporting military, commercial, and sacerdotal networks."