09 April 2009

Violence Covereth Them as a Garment

From Larry Hurtado's article in Slate on the historical Jesus:
...Jesus' crucifixion posed a whole clutch of potential problems for early Christians. It meant that at the origin and heart of their faith was a state execution and that their revered savior had been tried and found guilty by the representative of Roman imperial authority. This likely made a good many people wonder if the Christians weren't some seriously subversive movement. It was, at least, not the sort of group that readily appealed to those who cared about their social standing.
No shit. Matthew 10:24-27:
The disciple is not above the master, nor the servant above his lord. It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the good man of the house Beelzebub, how much more them of his household? Therefore fear them not. For nothing is covered that shall not be revealed: nor hid, that shall not be known. That which I tell you in the dark, speak ye in the light: and that which you hear in the ear, preach ye upon the housetops.
At Tenebrae last night, glancing at the crucifix draped amorphously in black during the singing of Psalm 73, the famous image above taken at Abu Ghraib came suddenly to mind.

Anyone who questions the relevance of faith in contemporary public life might consider these things side by side - and also wish the church were louder, and more often heard, when speaking in the light.

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