March 3, 2008

Everybody Wants to go to Heaven, but Nobody knows it's a Lie!

It seems that the gospel for too long has been about where we'll end up after we die. Sadly, we begin evangelism with the question (and not relationship), "if you were to die today, would you go to heaven?"

Obsession. Failure. Misguided. Irrelevant.

N.T. Wright has become one of the most formidable and brilliant N.T. scholars of our generation. I agree with him in many ways on his recent book. You can see what he has to say about why heaven doesn't exist in this piece for Time (I really recommend the read, it's well worth it). Because of our unseen Greek influences, heaven has become a matter of discourse for anyone who would dare call themselves a Christian. In the end this leads to a dualism never intended by the N.T. writers or God, I think.

The final book of the Bible, Revelation declares that when Jesus comes back, believers won't be swooped into heaven while the rest experience some tribulation-like some whacked out authors have written. Jesus was resurrected with his new body bearing the marks of crucifixion. This earth too will experience new creation, a resurrection bearing the marks of the crucifixion that it is suffering at the hands of its so called caretakers.

Being Christian does not exempt us from being human. We must care for this world and for people (not simply their souls). It is time we rethought heaven, earth, resurrection, and the future plight of creation intended by God. Towards the earth, we must take care of God's creation for it is on loan from our children. Towards our neighbor, we must seek and create meaningful relationships that care for and allow for that person to share who they truly are and care for their real needs. Towards God, we must be humble enough to allow him to break the boxes we force him to reside in.

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