I recently delivered a series of talks on the subject of Christian witness concerning male and female, sex, marriage, sexuality, and gender in the current Western world. There are four lectures and two question times. You can listen to them all here.
In your video “Created in the Image of the Angels” you say that humans were supposed to grow into the Image of God, but don’t discuss how this relates to the verse you referenced in passing earlier in the video: “Then the Lord God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever”—” Can you expand on the meaning of this verse in the context of the passage (did the serpent speak part of the truth earlier in the passage, or is this just a verbal play on what the serpent had said?) and in the context of what you believe the Bible teaches about redeemed humanity and the image of God. (I realize I could have asked via a comment to the video, but this is an issue a wide range of Bible readers, with different levels of familiarity with the scriptures, find perplexing, and a video might be helpful.)
In this episode of the Theopolis Podcast, Peter Leithart and I are joined by Dr David Field, to discuss his work in the area of psychology and counselling. Dr Field’s work has been vigorously discussed on the Theopolis blog (see this opening post and the responses linked at the top) and elsewhere over the last month.
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How should Gentile Christians situate themselves when listening to the New Testament’s many sections which were originally directed towards Jewish Christians, but seem now in many ways to apply to Gentiles who have been raised in the the faith?
For example, large sections of Romans are clearly directed at Jewish believers (e.g. Romans 2:17-29), with the basic thrust here and elsewhere being the dangers for those who use the law to justify themselves whilst condemning others.
However, with most churches across the world now being predominantly or wholly Gentile, there will be few, if any, converted Jews in the congregation to create this tension. These passages, then, are usually reapplied as a warning to mature Gentile believers not to look down on others.
The logic of this “re-application” is obvious, as mature Gentile believers, standing atop centuries of Christendom, do find the religious Jews addressed by Paul easier to relate to than the recently converted, formerly idolatrous Gentiles he addresses elsewhere – and yet to identify with them seems to do a violence to both the text, and the categories of Jew and Gentile which God has created. Even though the dividing wall has been torn down in Christ, both categories still exist and matter in some sense. As a Gentile Christian, though my felt experience may be as an “older brother”, the reality and categories of salvation history inescapably categorise me as a “younger brother”.
However, if one preached and taught these sections with exclusive reference to Jewish Christians in congregations where you will never actually have any Jewish Christians, I imagine the result would be a lot of sermons directed at people who aren’t there!
How then should we Gentiles situate ourselves when applying these texts?”
On this week’s Mere Fidelity, the whole cast gets together to discuss Andrew’s new book, Spirit and Sacrament: An Invitation to Eucharismatic Worship.
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