Sunday, March 18, 2007

A question on Barth ... Please help!

I came across these sentences in Barth's Epistle to the Romans and I have a question. He says:

"...we men, living in time, perceive the Futurum resurrectionis [future resurrection], which is our true and positive conformity to Jesus. This is wholly distinct from such moral and actual experiences or dispositions of character as many accompany the perception" (197).

He's commenting on Romans 6:5

Is Barth recognizing that in there is a true conformity the begins in the Christian life? Or is he just Lutheran enough to place all real subjective change in the end (glorification)?

I'll leave this vague. Hopefully the conversation will lead to clarity.

Thanks Barthians!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

...Gregory, preaching, being moved, Panera...

I often wonder why I post reflectionless quotes on my blog. I think perhaps the answer might be that in some strange way I just want to be heard. That perhaps as I sit here in Panera, reading Gregory the Great's Pastoral Rule, and utterly moved by the following passage, I hope that some might share in my own experience, my own emotions, my own story. Anyways, at the risk of being ignored, I hope you preachers who frequent my blog (any maybe others) might be moved with me by these ancient words.

"Let them hear what is said to the preacher through Solomon, Drink water out of your own cistern, and running waters of your own well. Let your fountains be dispersed abroad, and divide your waters in the streets. Have them to yourself alone, and let not strangers be partakers with you (Prov. v. 15-17). For indeed the preacher drinks out of his own cistern, when, returning to his own heart, he first listens himself to what he has to say. He drinks the running waters of his own well, if he is watered by his own word. And in the same place it is well added, Let your fountains be dispersed abroad, and divide your waters in the streets. For indeed it is right that he should himself drink first, and then flow upon others in preaching. For to disperse fountains abroad is to pour outwardly on others the power of preaching. Moreover, to divide waters in the streets is to dispense divine utterances among a great multitude of hearers according to the quality of each. And, because for the most part the desire of vain glory creeps in when the Word of God has free course unto the knowledge of many, after it has been said, Divide your waters in the streets, it is rightly added, Have them to yourself alone, and let not strangers be partakers with you. He here calls malignant spirits strangers, concerning whom it is said through the prophet in the words of one that is tempted, Strangers are risen up against me, and strong ones have sought after my soul (Ps. liii. 5). He says therefore, Both divide your waters in the streets, and yet have them to yourself alone; as if he had said more plainly, It is necessary for you so to serve outwardly in preaching as not to join yourself through elation to unclean spirits, lest in the ministry of the divine word you admit your enemies to be partakers with you. Thus we divide our waters in the streets, and yet alone possess them, when we both pour out preaching outwardly far and wide, and yet in no wise court human praises through it." (Gregory the Great, Pastoral Rule, 3.24)