Friday, April 02, 2010

Jesus: The Pascal Mystery

As I was preparing to write my thoughts for this Good Friday I wanted to do a little reading to prepare myself. I had some unique observations last night as we ate a ritual meal with friends that I was wanting to share. I will not write those thoughts, well not exactly. As I was reading and preparing I came across a speech by Richard Rohr from 2005. In 1 paragraph during the speech he succinctly, and with far better words than my own put these thoughts together. So instead of my own thoughts, I feel much more compelled to just give you that paragraph.

The Pascal mystery might not be a phrase that is familiar to all of you; it is a phrase that was coined by Augustine as he was trying to describe the Christ mystery. The mystery is that life and death, loss and renewal are the two sides of everything and you dare not separate them. If you do, you have reality falsely defined. If you have reality unfairly defined, it will not lead to enlightment, it will not lead to truth. For Christians the Christ mystery of “Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ will come again” is a mythic acclamation that describes that transformative movement from death to resurrection. I hope I’m not being too cynical in saying this, but I don’t think we really want to walk that mystery ourselves, so we worship it in Jesus. Now let me explain that. This theory is exemplified in the recent movie the Passion that’s gained so much notoriety and fame. You know, Jesus never once said, “Worship me,” he said, “Follow me.” One of the cleverest ways to avoid following someone is to worship him, it really works, it's very clever. You just put him on a pedestal, you make God out of him and you pay all kind of homage to this God figure and then you don’t have to do what he did. All he was doing was walking the journey of a good and full- blooded Jewish man into love and he died a good full-blooded Jewish man on the path of love and when you love that is where it is going to lead you. You’re not going to fit into the system as it usually is structured which is not usually in the direction of love. It is usually structured in the direction of power (and not necessarily in any kind of descent, certainly the Roman empire would have been structured in the ways of ascent). There is no way he was going to fit inside of that world and inside of that culture. We use Jesus to answer a problem.
If you would like to read the enitre speech you do do so by following this link -

1 comment:

Christi said...

Well said...beautiful!