31 July 2008

We're one, but we're not the same

You say: "love is a temple, love a higher law
Love is a temple, love the higher law."
You ask me to enter, but then you make me crawl
And I can't be holding on to what you got, when all you got is hurt.

From the song "One." I've often thought about these lyrics, especially whenever I'm contemplating the inbreaking of the new covenant, in anticipation of the return of the crucified God, the risen Messiah.

Betraying more of my idiosyncracies than is probably wise, I fancy this excerpt to speak against much of the church at large. "Love," they say, "in this new covenant, is a temple, a higher law. Come. Enter your rest." (All this is true, of course.)

Yet it turns out to be anything but rest. Burdened with guilt and talmudic blue laws (fill in the blank here: drinking, homeschooling, what can and can't be done on the first day of the week, being forced to practice a limp-wristed tolerance, etc.) the forgiveness and thus the peace of Christ has all but vanished. 

Binding consciences with the word of man, not of God, such that the one enjoined to enter now must crawl under the oppressive thumb of he who has been called to shepherd the flock is a betrayal most insidious. If all you got is hurt, maybe you should rethink your ordination vows.


6 comments:

John Schaefer said...

Well, I'd join the movement if there was one I could believe in, and I'd break bread and wine if there was a church I could receive in. Cause I need it now, to take the cup, fill it up, drink it slow.

Congrats on the job!!!

Chris Donato said...

Nice, John. I don't think I'm as far gone as Bono in those lyrics—yet!

By the way, I've been working this current gig for about six years; I've just been blogging icognito, that's all.

steve said...

Hi Chris.

Just stopping by for some munchies. Mmmm, U2 always goes down smooth. Talmudic blue laws, ew...that homeschooling one always gets stuck in me craw something fierce and lately the pro-lifeism has really been causing some heart burn.

...somebody just please pass the bread and wine and I'll be all right.

Zrim

Chris Donato said...

Now, don't get me started on how many, if not most, Reformed churches (who ought to know better) are starving their people, a lot of times out of sheer expediency: "Filling up all those tiny cups and preparing the bread is so tedious and time consuming," they whine.

Identity is keeping me from cursing.

steve said...

Chris,

Blogging has helped me discover my inner upstart...

Phew, we may have our differences on the nature of the church's relevancy to the cares of the world, but looks like we may be brothers-in-arms over the shoddy state of the means of grace in Reformed environs. I'd say "Amen!" but you know how we Presbies feel about outbursts. Of course, it's better than cursing...I did a lot of that when a recent candidate, during his interview for our pulpit, got caught up in the horns of the content of the cup versus its frequency. I told him I'd rather drink Welch's "as often as we meet" than wine every month. He muttered something unintelligible before diving into well deserved diatribes about alcoholism with the resident liberals (who have managed to get us glutton-free wafers).

...have I gotten you going yet?

Zrim

Chris Donato said...

Steve,

You folks are well on your way to cultural relevance. May I suggest organic wine and wafers? If I started naming names, you'd be flabbergasted.

My blood pressure's rising…

 
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