Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Disabled God - and some appropriately disjointed thoughts on resurrection

"In presenting his impaired body to his startled friends, the resurrected Jesus is revealed as the disabled God,” she wrote. God remains a God the disabled can identify with, she argued — he is not cured and made whole; his injury is part of him, neither a divine punishment nor an opportunity for healing.

I think I neglected to post this obituary for theologian Nancy Eieslund last month. I have finally ordered her book The Disabled God, which may be pertinent to next Sunday's sermon. (No preaching this Easter weekend, but I'm on for Low Sunday.) As may this, of course.

And then there's the rich reading in the book of Acts, the one about what we contemporary Christians mostly don't do. Except in some very poor communities, like the one I just read about in this book. Hmmm.

Kevin preached a kick-a** sermon at St. Mary's House this a.m. about the importance of how Jesus died (crucifixion) in relation to how we are to live post-Resurrection (in a way that subverts the powers that be - intentionally). There was more, but that is the part related to what I've been starting to think about for next Sunday. Of course, things could change between now and then.

This morning's sermon (one of them - I was also at the early Vigil at All Saints') also reminded me of Krister Stendahl's excellent essay "Immortality Is Too Much and Too Little." (Originally this essay was his 1972 Nobel Conference lecture at Gustavus Adolphus College. It is available in Stendahl's book of essays Meanings: the Bible as Document and as Guide.) Stendahl's point is that we confuse resurrection with immortality of the soul. We don't proclaim the latter. We proclaim the resurrection of the body - and the victory of God's justice. Not, as Stendahl in his inimitable way put it, "what this has to do with little me."

Alleluia. Go forth.
He Qi: After Resurrection


LKT said...

I saw that obituary too. Thanks for the reminder since I'm preaching on that text myself. Also, fyi, I linked to this on my blog, so thank you! And happy Easter!

word verification: sictic - the reaction many people have to disabilities of any kind.

Doorman-Priest said...

What a truly wonderful piece of artwork.

Belated Happy Easter.

Kevin M said...

Thanks for the compliment. I have to thank Jim Prevatt for sending me the original article that I based my sermon on.