Sunday, March 5, 2017

James K. Smith, Desiring the Kingdom (p. 162)

You are worth to take the scroll
and to open its seal,
for you were slaughtered and by your blood
you ransomed for God
saints from every tribe and language and people and nations;
you have made them to be a kingdom
and priests serving our God,
and they will reign on earth. (Rev. 5:9-10)

But our congregation doesn't look like this kingdom from every tribe and tongue and nation. And yet we'll sing of it, in confession and in hope. We know that this is the sort of people we are called to be, and because of this, our current not-yet gatherings will have to constantly confess their failures (That we are a "broken communion in a broken world"), seek forgiveness, plead for mercy to undo these fractures, and yet "marvel that the Lord gathers the broken pieces to do his work." Our gathering is an act of eschatological hope that amounts to a kind of defiance: while the faces and colors of our gathered congregation might constantly remind us that the kingdom remains to come, the Spirit also invites us to overcome, reminding us that, despite the failures internal to our gatherings, at the same time the worldwide chorus looks miraculously like this kingdom choir--prompting us to become a people that looks more and more like the "great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and people and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb," who together sing one song, "Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!" (Rev. 7:9-10).

No comments:

Post a Comment