By: Sarah Lynne Gershon
Resurrection Sunday is usually a day of celebration. Churches around the world rejoice in the raising of Jesus Christ, singing songs of death defeating Death and breaking fast with indulgent food, but I have not been swept up in this rejoicing. As I reflect on this day I have felt strongly led into a spirit of confession and repentance. I must confess to you that I don't really believe in the resurrection. I don't believe that life has conquered death, that love overcomes fear, or in the power of the Spirit of God to overcome injustice. Likewise, I suspect that the vast majority of USAmerican Christians, particularly the white majority, don't believe in it either. Our faith is weak, and we regularly betray our professed faith in both our personal and political lives.
Easter is a day of celebration, but I cannot participate in a celebratory farce when so many USAmerican Christians cast their ballots for fear: embracing a delusional sense of physical security rather than offering refuge to tormented Syrians, choosing misguided economic security rather than camaraderie with undocumented immigrants, engaging in war, death, and oppression with the pretense of peace and justice.
By: Drew Hart
Note: This article originally appeared on The Christian Century
As we reflect on what we so casually refer to as Good Friday, we are called to remember and reflect on the significance of Jesus’ death, which itself has a contested meaning in the Church. Some of the challenges around the meaning of Jesus’ death is related to the way his death is divorced from the narratives of his life. Jesus’ death is often placed in a context-free vacuum, in which it is only about our forgiveness of sins (carried out through divine contract). Such abstractions willfully choose to not read Jesus’ death in the context of his life. The political confrontation, the power-dynamics, the concerns of the masses, the subversive implications of the narrative’s plot, and the inherent judgment of Yahweh that came and judged the injustice and idolatry of the Jerusalem establishment which is echoed through the use of Israel’s prophetic texts, are all made invisible in the Jesus stories. All of this leads up to, and interprets, Jesus’ death. However, according to Luke’s narration, the earliest followers of Jesus understood his death as something done by the socio-political players of his day: “our chief priests and rulers handed him over to be condemned to death, and crucified him.” (Luke 24:20, NET) We are given even more in Acts when Peter summarizes Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection like this:
By: Charletta Erb
Editor’s Note: This satirical piece is a part of the Overturning Tables Project…for more information, visit overturningtables.org.
Oh how I wish Jesus had set a better example!
Let’s be reasonable here. He should have proposed his prophetic action in consultation with the religious leadership far in advance of the Passover feasts. This would have reduced so much stress for the Pharisees and scribes.
He shouldn’t have made his case using sacred scriptures. Too risky, too radical, too much playing his religion card like he knew it all. Why did he have to bring Isaiah or Jeremiah into this, crazy activists claiming God’s house for foreigners, eunuchs and the like! One issue at a time now! How dare he come to the temple with an agenda!
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