Tuesday, March 1, 2011

N. T. Wright on Christian Hope and the Mission of God

"The church is called to a mission of implementing Jesus’ resurrection and thereby anticipating the final new creation. ...

"What you
do in the present – by painting, preaching, singing, sewing, praying, teaching, building hospitals, digging wells, campaigning for justice, writing poems, caring for the needy, loving your neighbor as yourself – will last into God’s future. These activities are not simply ways of making the present life a little less beastly, a little more bearable, until the day when we leave it behind altogether …. They are part of what we may call building for God’s kingdom. ...

"Every act of love, gratitude, and kindness; every work of art or music inspired by the love of God and delight in the beauty of his creation; every minute spent teaching a severely handicapped child to read or to walk; every act of care and nurture, of comfort and support, for one’s fellow nonhuman creatures; and of course every prayer, all Spirit-led teaching, every deed that spreads the gospel, builds up the church, embraces and embodies holiness rather than corruption, and makes the name of Jesus honored in the world – all of this will find its way, through the resurrecting power of God, into the new creation that God will one day make. That is the logic of the mission of God."

~ N. T. Wright, Surprised By Hope



4 comments:

Jash said...

I appreciate this post very much. I love N.T Wright. He is a man of God. I was wondering if you would read my post dealing with the Lordship of Christ, Christ as our Kurios. Would you be so kind as to tell me if I handled the subject fairly? http://jashcomstock.blogspot.com/

Bryan Owen said...

Thanks for your comments, Jash. I'll take a look at your blog posting when I get the chance.

R.H. said...

Good "stuff". Wright is right. I enjoyed listening to this short message from the Bishop. Thank you for making it available to those of us out here in cyberspace.

Bryan Owen said...

Thanks for the comments, R.H.

I was struck in particular by these words from Bishop Wright in the video:

"A rediscovery of the biblical vision of new creation validates in advance all the things that anticipate that work. And if anyone were to say, 'But it hasn't happened yet,' the answer is, 'But it has actually, with the resurrection of Jesus.' ... [The resurrection of Jesus] is the launching of new creation ahead of time, creating a platform on which we can work for new creation in the present until the day when God finally does it."

What a powerful affirmation that what we do with our bodies, our communities, and our world really matters, and not just for us and our children and grandchildren, but ultimately for the new creation itself.