Undermining Division

Many things divide us. Economics. Politics. Religion. Geography. Language. Overcoming these differences often comes when we find a common place of agreement. The Apostle Paul wrote in his Introductory remarks to the Church at Corinth how division over personalities undermined the kind of unity they should experience in Jesus Christ. He was so bold to suggest the kind of dis-unity expressed in factionalism gutted the cross of meaning.

How do the other texts inform this claim? Isaiah pointed to a common human experience of moving from darkness to light. It may be that oppressive human experiences keep us from seeing the world in hope-filled ways. We are impacted and distracted by the burden placed on us by powers – internal and external to us. Light may be akin to liberation. It is at this point the common human experience emerges. Everyone falls under the weight of some oppressive system – rich or poor, slave or free, male or female, Western or Eastern, Northern or Southern. Indeed some of these systems we wittingly participate with and in while others subtly undermine the vision we have for our own lives.

Matthew interprets the story of Jesus by applying the promise in Isaiah to Jesus. Roman systems or Jewish systems. Religious systems or irreligious systems. People living under the oppressive circumstances created by a lack of promise and hope need light to expose the treachery that robs them. And, Matthew points to Jesus – the light. The light of Jesus transcends human divisions, until we divide Jesus. Which again, the Apostle Paul appeals to our minds noting the cross is gutted in such circumstances. People are no longer liberated.

And we have fishermen. Jesus calls. They follow … liberated.

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Jesus invites people into his life and his way. He takes what is and points to the new way of the Kingdom of God.  Come see what this journey is all about!

One way to think about the mission of Jesus - He calls into question the way things are and points to the way things may be in the Kingdom of God. 

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