Wednesday, May 26, 2010

"A Cast Of Emancipated Characters" aka Church ala Brueggemann

In the latest issue of Sojourners biblical scholar Walter Brueggemann captures the great essence of what the church should be, as he brings the lectionary reflections for the first several weeks of the Pentecost Season. I liked his focus on "Pentecost is a time to re-enact the church as a movement unrestrained by fear of authorities." And how he summed up the church in this way:

"These texts, taken in sum, imagine the church. It is not an institution, but rather a community of folk who are propelled by God's own spirit, situated in Jesus' own narrative, and alive in the world in alternative ways."

There you have it all: a loose trinitarian allusion (God/Jesus/World), a shift from organization to organic movement, and a simplicity of Spirit and Story above all else. I like Shane Claiborne's shorter calling of the church as "a people of God making Jesus visible in the world", but Brueggemann's captures the importance of story, of mission movement, and the goal of living in alternative ways to the dominant cultural powers and values that be.

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