Sunday, April 24, 2011

Embody God's victory (Timothy Gombis)

I am enjoying Timothy Gombis' The Drama of Ephesians (2010). Here is something that can help us understand how to embody Christ' triumph over evil in our daily life (which is perhaps very relevant during Easter but certainly relevant throughout the year).

"A prisoner has lost his freedom and is under the domination of the state... According to the first-century logic, if Paul is in a Roman prison, then the gods of Rome are stronger than the God whom Paul serves. So, why is Paul under the thumb of the powers that Christ has already vanquished?..." (p 109)

"So Paul gives them an apocalyptic interpretation of his apostleship and imprisonment. This is a heavenly vision of his life and ministry focusing especially on how it makes perfect sense that he is in prison... Paul's strategy is to situate his present circumstances squarely within the biblical tradition of God's power being demonstrated in human weakness. He does this by emphasizing the paradox of his life and ministry - at the same time that he occupies this terribly shameful and utterly weak situation as a prisoner, he fulfills a cosmically crucial commission as the administrator of the grace of God. In so doing, Paul wonderfully performs the same paradox as God's victory in Christ. Jesus Christ conquered the powers and authorities through his shameful and humiliating death on a Roman cross. because of God's upside-down logic, performances of God's triumph will inevitably involve displays of God's power through human weakness, loss, shame and humiliation." (p 110)

No comments: