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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
     Monday, September 29 2003 

Jon Kennedy, webmaster

Gospel and politics, 2

Last week's topic has taken the discussion on the forum list into territory I've never been in (not having been a customer of Nanty Glo candy stores/Mom and Pop stores). I've considered doing something like it on the Belsano and Twin Rocks stores of my youth, but this doesn't seem the time.

Meanwhile, I have received a note about an earlier Jonal entry:

You began one several weeks ago on the Apostle Paul on which I expected a sequel that didn't appear.

That sentence is worth a comment today in case others have also been waiting for that second metaphorical shoe to drop. I'm still reading Anglican Bishop N. T. Wright's book, What Saint Paul Really Said: Was Paul of Tarsus the Real Founder of Christianity? and should finish reading it this week. But my initial impressions haven't changed; it still comes across as a (lowercase) orthodox evangelical Christian thesis of highest-caliber scholarship and biblical exegesis (the science of "mining the meaning" of the biblical texts; similar to but deeper and broader than "interpretation").

I'll throw out a quote from the book as food for thought before our next "sequel" on the discussion of what St. Paul really said:

Preaching the gospel means announcing Jesus as Lord of the world; and, unless we are prepared to contradict ourselves with every breath we take, we cannot make that announcement without seeking to bring that lordship to bear over every aspect of the world. There was a popular slogan some years ago, according to which "if Jesus is not Lord of all, He is not Lord at all." That was routinely applied to personal piety and commitment. I suggest that it is just as true, and just as important, in terms of the cosmic lordship of Jesus.

This means, of course, as it meant for Paul, that there is no area of existence or life, including no area of human life, that does not come up for critique in the light of the sovereignty of the crucified and risen Jesus; no area that is exempt from the summons to allegiance....

One of last week's story links in my other webpage, Xnmp, was identified by this headline: 'Alabama Christians said to have voted "unChristianly" on taxes.' Your assignment for next time, if you choose to accept it, is to think about the implication in the quotation above for the linked story about tax reform in Alabama and the calls by the state's governor and others to consider "what Jesus would have done" in that recent referendum, Is there such a thing as "voting Christianly," or the converse, "unChristianly"? Or, here's an alternative question to ponder: Does the quotation above, if true, undermine the usual interpretation of Jesus' call to "render to Caesar what is Caesar's and unto God what is God's"?

Webmaster Jon Kennedy

Think about it (but not too long)

A sandwich walks into a bar. The barman says, "Sorry, we don't serve food in here."

—Sent by Bill Dalrymple 

Thought for today

...when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

— Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes) 

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