Saturday, September 03, 2005

"Adam, where are you?"

Russell Moore has written a piece entitled "Christ, Katrina, and My Hometown." This is what the "already" and the "not yet" looks like in a world groaning under tsunamis and hurricanes. An excerpt follows:

As Christians we know something about Katrina that the rest of the world just can’t know: This is not the way it is meant to be. The Psalmist reminds us that God originally put all things under the feet of Adam (Psalm 8:6). But the writer of Hebrews reminds us that we do not yet see all things under the feet of humanity (Hebrews 2:8), although we do see a crucified and resurrected Jesus (Hebrews 2:9). The apostle Paul likewise reminds us that the creation itself groans under the reign of sin and death, waiting for its rightful rulers to assume their thrones in the resurrection (Romans 8:20-23). The storms and the waves are one more reminder that the "already" has not yet been replaced by the "not yet."

Against the backdrop of the hurricane, consider the contrast between the prophet Jonah and the Messiah Jesus. Like Jonah, Jesus is confronted by a seemingly murderous storm, with his fellow travelers convinced they would perish. Whereas Jonah the sinner could only still the storm by throwing himself into its midst, Jesus exercises dominion over the winds and the waves with his voice. Mark reminds us that the boat's occupants remarked: "Who then is this, that even wind and sea obey him?" (Mark 4:41).

The CNN meteorologists can explain the hurricane only in terms of barometric pressure and water temperatures. We know, however, that at its root this natural disaster isn't natural at all. It is a creation crying out, "Adam, where are you?"
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3 Comments:

At 8:38 AM, Anonymous Caleb said...

Bill,

Thanks for the link. I appreciate Moore's article, but take issue with one sentence "As Christians we know something about Katrina that the rest of the world just can’t know: This is not the way it is meant to be."

I submit that the fact that the world is not the way it is meant to be, that we are somehow not whole, isn't a mystery to non-Christians. It is in fact something that we (humans, whether Christian or not) can't not know. As J. Budziszewski has written in his latest book, there are certain conceptions, part of the fundamental moral, or natural law, that none of us can help but know. One of them, I think, is the fallen nature of the universe.

We can deny that fundamental fact, but we have to actively deny it. It is there in our faces all the time. Now, what we can't know without the scripture is the way out from our fallen world - the way that goes through Christ to the resurrection of the body and the restoration of all things.

Please continue to pray for my city (Baton Rouge), state and the region at large. If you want to know about an organization that is actively working to meet the physical and spiritual needs of the people in the area, check out http://www.prccompassion.org/

Caleb

 
At 3:05 PM, Blogger B-Wildered said...

Caleb,

Thanks for the clarification. I think Moore is focusing more on the specifics of our proper human inheritance, now glimpsed in the resurrection existence of our Lord and difficult (impossible?) to discern apart from that; but it is certainly true that there are things "we can't not know," especially some sense of our obligations to God and others, and an awareness that something has gone deeply wrong in us and our world. And it is also true that we need constant reminders of all these things, including yours. Again, thanks.

In the meantime, we will continue the priestly and kingly service of praying for your city and the Gulf Coast at large, as we wait for that grand inheritance, already enjoyed by our Lord.

 
At 8:32 PM, Anonymous Jim Schmidt said...

Bill,

The groaning is horrific, awesome in its own right viewed against the backdrop of God's Glory and Power, mercy and justice. Lord come quickly!

 

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