Tuesday, May 4, 2010


I just bought the book, "Surprised by Hope," by N.T. Wright. I am first off, amazed at this guys sheer intelligence. Sometimes I have to read a section a few times to truly understand what he's talking about. Secondly, the information in this book is vital, I think, for Christians in today's society who hold a Gnostic way of thinking, ie., the purpose of being a Christian is to go to heaven when you die. In this thinking, death isn't conquered, it is merely a spiritual thing. But the Bible, in Romans 8:18-25 and Revelation 21&22, clearly state otherwise. The Christian view should be this:

that "what the creator God has done in Jesus Christ, and in his resurrection, is what he intends to do for the while world-meaning by world, the entire cosmos with all its history."

Here are some quotes about redemption and resurrection that I really like from this book.

"Redemption doesn't mean scrapping what's there and starting again from a clean slate but rather liberating what has come to be enslaved."

"What creation needs is neither abandonment nor evolution but rather redemption and renewal; and this is both promised and guaranteed by the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. This is what the whole world's waiting for."

I haven't yet finished the book. As I said above, its challenging for me to wrap my mind around some of the things he is talking about, mostly I think, because its new for me. I can't remember one sermon that I've heard about the TRUE Easter message, meaning, the implications of Jesus resurrection on the world, and more so, the implications in my life NOW.

1 comment:

  1. Yes! I'm loving this book. I've been processing and talking about this stuff for a while, and people either don't know how to respond or they ask me, "Have you read Surprised By Hope?". Now I see why. He puts structure to some of these seemingly abstract thoughts about new creation, new city, and resurrection.
    You're right about most Easter messages (and this is not just an Easter message but THE message) not touching the flesh and blood reality of resurrection. Eugene Peterson touches this a bit in some of his books, and Tim Keller touches it a bit when he talks about the New City. Theology regarding the New City has taken off recently because church planters (i.e. Acts 29) are getting excited about transforming cities. This is a good thing, but it's just a part. Yes, cities will be transformed, but that's because the whole earth, even the whole cosmos (as Wright likes to say) will be transformed.
    I feel like I've stumbled upon something that is reshaping things for me. It's like I've gotten to the next chapter in a really good book, and this chapter is reshaping the whole story. I didn't think the book could get any better but now it has!