Saint Paul says, “… there is not male and female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3: 28). The new humanity that we are pointed toward is not neuter or unisex or even oversexed, all of which make love impossible. In Christ we are whole, one, in union, integrated, wholly holy. That is the final product of the Spirit’s work of making all things one. It is the consummate achievement of God in Christ who reconciles all things within himself (Colossians 1: 20) and invites us into the ongoing reconciliation of all things (Ephesians 5: 20).
I love to remind people that the word “nice” is never found in the whole Bible. God is not nice, it seems; God is wild.
God is not a “company man” and does not appear to be calling for company or tribal values. Yahweh is the God of “all the peoples” and forms his own “rainbow coalition.”
“Whoever loves is born of God and knows God.” Unfortunately, many Christians think, “If I read the Bible, I’m born of God; or if I go to church, I know God; or if I obey the commandments, I know God.” Yet John says it’s simply about loving. Note that the inverse is true also. “Whoever is without love does not know God, for God is love.”
When you agree to live simply, you have time for spiritual and corporal works of mercy because you have renegotiated in your mind and heart your very understanding of time and its purposes. Time is not money, despite the common aphorism. Time is life itself!
The Bible moves us from sacred place (why the temple had to go) or sacred action (why the law had to be relativized) or mental belief systems (why Jesus had no prerequisites in this regard) to time itself as sacred time. “I am with you always, yes, to the very end of time” is the last verse of Matthew’s Gospel (28: 20).
We Christians are such a strange religion! We worship this naked, bleeding loser, crucified outside the walls of Jerusalem, but we always want to be winners, powerful, and on top ourselves… at least until we learn to love the little things and the so-called little people, and then we often see they are not little at all, but better images of the soul.