Friday, March 11, 2011

Jesus' Third Way

I am currently reading Walter Wink's book The Powers That Be, and loving it. Wink is brilliant, creative, and prophetic in the way he calls the Christian community to lives that mirror the non-violent resistance of Jesus. We can so easily react to oppression and evil in our own lives and the world with either passivity or violence, but Jesus calls for neither. He instead asks for us to be innovative in our response, ushering a new, alternative reality into the world (what we might call the Kingdom of God). This quote from Wink basically summarizes the book so far:

"Jesus, in short, abhors both passivity and violence. He articulates, out of the history of his own people's struggles, a way by which evil can be opposed without being mirrored, the oppressor resisted without being emulated, and the enemy neutralized without being destroyed."

The whole chapter that this quote comes from is astounding. Wink exegetes brilliantly the words from Jesus (in the Sermon on the Mount) where he asks people to turn the other cheek, give their cloak as well as their coat, and go the second mile (Matt. 5:38-41). Absolutely amazing information. I couldn't recommend this book more.

1 comment:

  1. I've been meaning to read some Walter Wink - he's gotten enough huge props in books by Shane Claiborne and Brian McLaren that I should finally just do it.