In a gift to prophecy wonks, the “Doomsday Clock” has been set ahead two minutes.
This will undoubtedly elate Rapture enthusiasts, even though they tend to disbelieve the reasons why these scientists feel we’re getting closer to the end.
Expect to see a lot of clock faces on Facebook for the next few days…
Last week I put a link up in the weekly “Linkathon” that was a little historical snapshot about John Wesley that painted a less holy picture of the man than we normally read in Wesleyan hagiography. In the very same article was a link defending Arminianism, written by (shudder) a Calvinist. I thought it was a good balance. As a result, I’ve been “unfriended”, called a drunk, a heathen, and some other things I can’t print. Had the article been critical of Calvin or Luther, the same folks would still be applauding…so my counsel to them is “don’t let the door hit you where the dog bit you”…
In a rare trifecta, Miss Kitty managed to dump a cup of coffee on my keyboard, phone and iPad in one move. So far, all have survived except my shift key…try typing without one.
My favorite observation from N.T. Wright is actually quite classically Reformed in character…and quite radical when you really think about it.
The born again believer is “in Christ”…and thus, what is true about Him is true about them.
This is where all the debates about justification and sanctification should both begin and end…in my opinion of course.
“In Romans 6.11, the result of being baptized “into Christ”… is that one is now “in Christ,” so that what is true of him is true of the one baptized–here, death and resurrection. This occurs within the overall context of the Adam-Christ argument of chapter 5, with its two family solidarities; the Christian has now left the old solidarity (Romans 6.6) and entered the new one. 6.23 may be read by analogy with 6.11; whose who are “in Christ” receive the gift of the life of the new age, which is already Christ’s in virtue of his resurrection–that is, which belongs to Israel’s representative, the Messiah in virtue of his having drawn Israel’s climactic destiny on to himself. Similarly, in Romans 8.1, 2 the point of the expression “in Christ” is that what is true of Christ is true of his people: Christ has come through the judgment of death and out into the new life which death can no longer touch (8.3-4; 8.10-11), and that is now predicated of those who are “in him.” In Galatians 3.26 the ex-pagan Christians are told that they are all sons of God (a regular term for Israel…) in Christ, through faith. It is because of who the Messiah is–the true seed of Abraham, and so on–that Christians are this too, since they are “in” him. Thus in v. 27, explaining this point, Paul speaks of being baptized “into” Christ and so “putting on Christ,” with the result that (3.28) [translating Wright’s reproduction of Paul’s Greek here:] you are all one in Christ Jesus. It is this firm conclusion, with all its overtones of membership in the true people of God, the real people of Abraham, that is then expressed concisely in 3.29 with the genitive [again translating]: and if you are of Christ… When we consider Galatians 3 as a whole, with its essentially historical argument from Abraham through Moses to the fulfillment of God’s promises in the coming of Christ, a strong presupposition is surely created in favor both of reading Xpistos as “Messiah,” Israel’s representative, and of understanding the incorporative phrases at the end of the chapter as gaining their meaning from this sense. Because Jesus is the Messiah, he sums up his people in himself, so that what is true of him is true of them.”
N.T. Wright: Climax of the Covenant: Christ and the Law in Pauline Theology [Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1993]