28 July 2008

processing: the peaceable kingdom- stanley hauerwas

A few thought-provoking excerpts...

Jesus, Israel, and the Imitation of God from page 76

“…For there is no way to learn to “imitate” God by trying to copy in an external manner the actions of Jesus. No one can become virtuous by doing what virtuous people do. We can only be virtuous by doing what virtuous people do in the manner that they do it. Therefore one can only learn how to be virtuous, to be like Jesus, by learning from others how that is done. To be like Jesus requires that I become part of a community that practices virtues, not that I copy his life point by point. There is a deeper reason that I cannot and should not mimic Jesus. We are not called upon to be the initiators of the kingdom, we are not called upon to be God’s anointed. We are called upon to be like Jesus, not to be Jesus…Thus to be like Jesus is to join him in the journey through which we are trained to be a people capable of claiming citizenship in God’s kingdom of nonviolent love-a love that would overcome the powers of this world, not through coercion and force, but through the power of this one man’s death.”

The Church IS a Social Ethic from page 99

“Surely in social ethics we should downplay the distinctively Christian and emphasize that we are all people of good will as we seek to work for a more peaceable and just world for everyone. Yet that is exactly that I am suggesting we should not do. I am in fact challenging the very idea that Christian social ethics is primarily an attempt to make the world more peaceable or just. Put starkly, the first social ethical task of the church is to be the church-the servant community. Such a claim may well sound self-serving until we remember that what makes the church the church is its faithful manifestation of the peaceable kingdom in the world. As such the church does not have a social ethic; the church is a social ethic.”

The Servant Community from page 105

“The virtues of patience and hope are necessary to be a people who must learn to live without control…For ‘living out of control’ is but a way of suggesting that we are an eschatological people who base our lives on the knowledge that God has redeemed his creation through the work of Jesus of Nazareth. We thus live out of control in the sense that we must assume God will use our faithfulness to make his kingdom a reality in the world.”

on Nonviolence from page 123

“For it is my contention that if we are genuinely nonviolent we can no more decide to use violence even if the situation seems to warrant it, that the courageous can decide, under certain conditions, to be cowardly.”

The Peaceable Kingdom

No comments: