Sunday, April 8, 2012

The House of His Father


“For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, that you through his poverty might become rich” (2COR 8:9).

In the genius of the blessed Trinity, our cruel rejection of Jesus became the way of our adoption; our bitter abuse became the way of the Father’s embrace and the dwelling of the Holy Spirit. For how could our unfaithfulness and contempt and treachery, or the enslaving lie of the evil one, or death itself break the love and oneness and life of the blessed Trinity?  In dying at our hands, Jesus brought his life into our death, his relationship with his Father into our gnarled pathology, his anointing by the Holy Spirit into our twisted darkness. Out of his boundless love “he was dishonored that he might glorify us,” (Gregory Nazianzen, Orations, I.5.) “he endured our insolence that we might inherit immortality”( Athanasius, On the Incarnation of the Word of God, §54). Suffering our abuse to give us grace, he met our cruelty with his kindness, our rejection with his merciful acceptance, and our dead and despairing religion with his joy.  By accepting us at our very worst, by submitting himself to us in our great darkness, he entered into our world with his, thus transforming the shack of Adam’s horrid fall into the house of his Father and the temple of the Holy Spirit.

In a variation on St. Paul’s great statement we might say, “For you know the stunning grace of the Father’s Son: that though he was rich in the shared life of the blessed Trinity, yet for our sake he became poor, suffering our wrath to meet us, and that now through his suffering we who were so poor have been included in Jesus’ own rich relationship with his Father in the Spirit.”

11 comments:

Timothy Parker said...

and so, if i may be so bold as to paraphrase, the Gospel is black and white, and we tend to live in shades of grey. And then by his light greyness gives way to the certainty of his bright light. But we still go on living, for some part, as if we could hide in greyness.

Doug Johannsen said...

As I viewed Baxter's excellent posts and comments, I'd like to contribute my own observations. If I view Jesus' crucifixion from a relationship point of view (Jesus is a friend of sinners, I'm a sinner, therefore I am his friend). I see my friend up on the cross saying to me (and everybody else), "I (God) am not a threat to you, never have been and never will be. So throw your worst at me, my friends, even kill me and see what I do about it." When he arose three days later, he didn't hunt down those who stole his clothes, whipped him, etc. My junk, along with every body else's, was left in the grave. That act of love bound me to my friend in an unbreakable way.

alert-up-usa.com said...
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alert-up-usa.com said...

Doug, Your Comment is well stated. I like where you went with it.

Baxter, this is my first time on your blog and I really like it. I will be subscribing and dropping by oftem.

My website is http://thecloudofunknowing.com

Thank you!!!

Bill

Ann Justin said...

He chooses not even to REMEMBER what they did to Him! That's GRACE!

Ann Justin said...

Very interesting material! I look forward to reading more!

Jovemeyer said...

Baxter,

Not sure if you get a chance to respond on here much but I had a question. I'm drawn to what you have to say about Trinitarian theology, and tend to feel the anxious tension in my heart relax a bit when I read what you have to say about God.

I am a Seminary student at a Wesleyan school of Theology and the emphasis there is strong upon the ethical quality of Jesus' life, death and resurrection, and how this story forms a "story formed community" called the church. The church then forms, through the empowering grace of God, a peculiar kind of people that are an alternative culture or polis.

So my question for you, is, within the traditions that emphasize Trinitarian theology; would it be fair to say that they typically lack a strong ethical impulse? If it is not unfair to say this, can you point to examples in the contrary?

Philip Scriber said...

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You're not on any contact lists, I promise; if you don't respond, that's it, and the invitation is open as long as you're actively blogging. Hope you join us!

Great Googly Moogly! said...
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Great Googly Moogly! said...
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C. Baxter Kruger, Ph.D. said...

Go ahead Doug