Bono (lead musician of the band U2) and Eugene Peterson (84 year-old Presbyterian minister and author of contemporary-language bible translation The Message) discuss the need for followers of Jesus to embody more realism in art, music, and life. Bono asks why “Christian music” is not more like the Psalms–embracing the whole spectrum of human emotions including not only happiness, but also confusion, anger, despair, and doubt. Source: Fuller Studio

Bono and Peterson

“We must find a way to cuss without cussing–and the Psalms help.” –Eugene Peterson

A 2-minute excerpt from Desiring God‘s interview with Steve Childers regarding how he sees the Gospel as fire spreading in and through the Treasuring God Church Planting Network.

by Steve Childers

clouds

Below are some of my favorite quotes from Tom Wright (Anglican Bishop) on the Resurrection and Heaven:  

“(If you’re a true believer in Jesus), after you die, you go to be ‘with Christ,’ but your body remains dead. Describing where and what you are in that interim period is difficult, and for the most part the New Testament writers don’t try. Call it “heaven” if you like, but don’t imagine that it’s the end of all things. What is promised after that interim period is a new bodily life within God’s new world.” 

“I am constantly amazed that many contemporary Christians find this confusing. It was second nature to the early church and to many subsequent Christian generations. It was what they believed and taught. If we have grown up believing and teaching something else, it’s time we rubbed our eyes and read our texts again.”

“Heaven is important, but its not the end of the world.”

“Jesus’ resurrection is the beginning of God’s new project not to snatch people away from earth to heaven but to colonize earth with the life of heaven. That, after all, is what the Lord’s Prayer is about.”

“The great drama will end, not with ‘saved souls’ being snatched up into heaven, away from the wicked earth and the mortal bodies which have dragged them down into sin, but with the New Jerusalem coming down from heaven to earth, so that ‘the dwelling of God is with humans’ (Revelation 21:3).”

“The resurrection completes the inauguration of God’s kingdom. . . . It is the decisive event demonstrating that God’s kingdom really has been launched on earth as it is in heaven.”

“We could cope—the world could cope—with a Jesus who ultimately remains a wonderful idea inside his disciples’ minds and hearts. The world cannot cope with a Jesus who comes out of the tomb, who inaugurates God’s new creation right in the middle of the old one.”

“God’s plan is not to abandon this world, the world which he said was ‘very good.’ Rather, he intends to remake it. And when he does he will raise all his people to new bodily life to live in it. That is the promise of the Christian gospel.”

“It is not about ‘life after death’ as such. Rather, it’s a way of talking about being bodily alive again after a period of being bodily dead. Resurrection is a second-stage postmortem life: life after ‘life after death.’”

“If you believe in resurrection, you believe that the living God will put his world to rights and that if God wants to do that in the future, it is right to try to anticipate that by whatever means in the present.”

“[Jesus] is, at the moment, present with us, but hidden behind that invisible veil which keeps heaven and earth apart, and which we pierce in those moments, such as prayer, the sacraments, the reading of scripture, and our work with the poor, when the veil seems particularly thin. But one day the veil will be lifted; earth and heaven will be one; Jesus will be personally present, and every knee shall bow at his name; creation will be renewed; the dead will be raised; and God’s new world will at last be in place, full of new prospects and possibilities.”

The point of the resurrection…is that the present bodily life is not valueless just because it will die…What you do with your body in the present matters because God has a great future in store for it…What you do in the present—by painting, preaching, singing, sewing, praying, teaching, building hospitals, digging wells, campaigning for justice, writing poems, caring for the needy, loving your neighbor as yourself—will last into God’s future. These activities are not simply ways of making the present life a little less beastly, a little more bearable, until the day when we leave it behind altogether (as the hymn so mistakenly puts it…). They are part of what we may call building for God’s kingdom.”

“In other words, precisely because the ultimate goal is … the redemption of the whole creation, our calling is to live in our bodies now in a way which anticipates the life we shall live then. Marital fidelity echoes and anticipates God’s fidelity to the whole creation. Other kinds of sexual activity symbolize and embody the distortions and corruptions of the present world.”

“It is a matter of glimpsing that in God’s new creation, of which Jesus’s resurrection is the start, all that was good in the original creation is reaffirmed. All that has corrupted and defaced it–including many things which are woven so tightly in to the fabric of the world as we know it that we can’t imagine being without them–will be done away. Learning to live as a Christian is learning to live as a renewed human being, anticipating the eventual new creation in and with a world which is still longing and groaning for that final redemption.”