The only way to break from our attachment to idolatry and the addiction to certainty is a change at the very core of our being, something that the apostle Paul called becoming a new creation. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
Have you felt faced with the similar two choices as Finn (the new christian) on pages 122/23 when starting to question the beliefs once taken for granted?
- Either leave the church or repress your questioning and insulate yourself from the outside world.
“It is not when we reject the Idol that we are freed from it but rather when we are directly confronted with the Idol rejecting its status as an Idol.” Rollins goes on to say that “The Cross testifies to a liberating logic where the prison of idolatry is shattered from within.”
Do you agree with Rollin’s analogy of how the church today largely teaches us to act like Oliver Hardy when it comes to the Crucifixion? (In the analogy, Rollins describes one of the Laurel and Hardy comedy motifs in which Hardy exhibits an excess of pride and arrogance, only to made to look ridiculous by a situation created by Laurel. It works because Hardy realizes by never accepts the reality of his humiliation.)
How do you understand the early church’s teaching of Jesus being fully human?
- I’ve always taken this to mean he was like me, but Rollins says he is fully human because he is unlike me. In other words, it is me who is not fully human, or not as originally intended. (page 134)
- Jesus lacked the lack. (without Original Sin)
I really like the second to last paragraph of the section “The Missing Link,” page 134
God of Christ is a reality that we experience as not existing. Instead, this God is present as the source that calls everything into existence.
God is not seen but is testified to in a particular way of seeing.
Quote at the end of page 138, “By revealing God as love, the Christian tradition rejects the idea that God is a meaningful being….”
To make the claim that you know God is actually to proclaim a no-God. It is to proclaim an Idol, masked as God.” (page 139)
In Christ we are confronted with a different understanding altogether, one in which God is not directly known (either as a being “out there” or as found in all things), but is the source that renders everything known.
Love is the crazy, mad, and perhaps ridiculous gesture of saying yes to life, of seeing it as worthy of our embrace and even worthy of our total sacrifice.
What do you think of Rollin’s depiction of the significance of as Christ dies on the Cross we read of the tombs breaking open and the dead coming to life?
A life in which the source of all is no longer approach as some being whom we ought to love, but as a mystery we participate in through the very act of love itself. (page 145)