Working through a N.T. Wright book is usually slow work for me, mainly because I can’t “get” what he is saying right away. This time, The Day the Revolution Began is different. It is slow going because I am blown away by every other sentence it seems.
Wright works through a biblical case for our Western view of the cross being too small. We have asked the wrong questions about the importance of the cross and it has led us to bring partial answers to a huge solution.
In most popular Christianity, “heaven” (and “fellowship with God” in the present) is the goal, and “sin” (bad behavior, deserving punishment) is the problem. A Platonized goal and a moralizing diagnosis (PERSONAL NOTE: This is what is meant by asking the wrong question and coming up with a partial, small solution) — and together they lead, as I have been suggesting, to a paganized “solution” in which an angry divinity is pacified by human sacrifice…
Humans are not made for “heaven,” but for the new heavens and new earth… The human problem is not so much “sin” seen as the breaking of moral codes (PERSONAL NOTE: though that is part of it)… but rather idolatry and the distortion of genuine humanness it produces.
What are we missing? Why is our cross “too small”?
The “goal” is not “heaven,” but a renewed human vocation within God’s renewed creation. This is what every biblical book from Genesis on is pointing toward.
Our view of God in Western Christianity is, quite frankly, too small. We’re missing so much of the story… and the deepest intentions of the Kingdom of God.