Irenic Thoughts

Irenic. The word means peaceful. This web log (or blog) exists to create an ongoing, and hopefully peaceful, series of comments on the life of King of Peace Episcopal Church. This is not a closed community. You are highly encouraged to comment on any post or to send your own posts.


The old bosses are GONE

In tomorrow's Gospel reading Jesus says,
Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be driven out. And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.
In writing about this passage at her blog Sarah Laughed, my friend Dylan wrote,
That's what Jesus says in this Sunday's gospel. It's quite a statement. I wonder how we might live, what choices we'd make, if we were going to live into this more deeply. What would it mean to say that the "one day" of the prophets was NOW? What would it mean if the "ruler of this world" will be driven out NOW?

For one thing, I think it would mean that it's time to stop kissing up to all prior candidates and all wannabees for the title of "ruler of this world." It's astonishing how often we get sucked into some path we didn't exactly choose, but seemed like the thing to do—the respectable thing, the thing that successful people do, the thing that responsible people do—and then structure every other choice around this one unchosen and unfulfilling fact. Or maybe our master has been some idea of self-sufficiency, of somehow accruing enough money or status to be "free" to do what we want, get what we want, be who we want to be, but it never seems to be quite enough—we discover new ways in which we are vulnerable, and try to get more money or status to make it go away, but then discover we're still vulnerable, and we start the cycle over again. As U2 puts it, "you can never get enough/of what you don't really need" ("Stuck In a Moment," All That You Can't Leave Behind).

Well if the time is now, there's no reason to remain stuck in all that. The old boss—all the old bosses—are GONE. Their power was illusory, and now even the illusion is passing away. That's what we mean when we say "Jesus is Lord." That's why all of this talk about "the judgment of this world" is GOOD news -- because, as I've preached about before, the judge is Jesus, the one who loved us enough to give his very life for us. "The judgment of this world" is not a gorefest like the Left Behind books; it's the culmination of Jesus' work on earth, the end of everything that separates us from one another and from God. We expect nothing less than that, the answer to our prayer that God's kingdom would come and God's will be done—on earth as it is in heaven.
The full text of her reflection is online here: Fifth Sunday in Lent, Year B



  • At 3/28/2009 11:59 AM, Blogger Tom Sramek, Jr. said…

    I recently saw a TV interview of a historian of the Great Depression who talked about the fact that when people's fortunes evaporated in that great economic conflagration, many people rediscovered the things that really matter--home, family, love, loyalty, relationships--over against the rampant consumerism of the "roaring" 20s. Sound familiar?

    Perhaps, as he said, this "Great Recession" is an opportunity to get off the consumer mind-set and recapture a sense of what really matters. Might not be as good for the economy in the short term as a return to rampant spending, but perhaps it would be good for our souls. Maybe the church can lead in this area.


Post a Comment

<< Home