Published on February 5, 2014
The Epiphany vs Boardroom Tycoon
Question • What does the word “epiphany” mean? • Why does the church use the term for the arrival of the wise men at Jesus’ crib?
Boardroom Tycoon •It’s a great game – hire and fire, attack other companies and take their money. • It’s almost the perfect representation of our cultural system – our kingdom • And it is supported by CPA Australia (!)
Two Kingdoms • Herod represents the story we all live in: the story of power, domination, control, success, fortunate birth, riches, powerful friends. • Jesus represents the opposite to this: weakness, submission, lack of control, failure, difficult birth situation, poverty, no friends
A Subtle Point • It’s not that I think the democratic capitalist world is wrong exactly – after all, it has freed people from poverty, cured diseases, and makes it possible for us to freely sit around in pubs discussing it. • The question is this:
Is it enough?
What I want is Transformation • The things I want can’t be bought or sold • They aren’t amenable to technical fixes • It is not driven by external, extrinsic benefits • It seems to have something to do with that most mysterious of entities: My soul.
The New World • It turns out that God is made manifest in precisely the things we tend to want to avoid – suffering, poverty, failure. It is the downtrodden who are in a position to receive God, not the fortunate. • And that does not just mean the physically poor. It applies just as much to the spiritually poor (Matt 5:2)
Theological Note • Luther base a lot of his theology on the distinction between the theologia gloriae (the power and pomp of the world where we naturally expect to see God) and the theologia crucis (that God is revealed precisely in the cross - i.e. in the Jesus who was not a person of worldly power)
Complexity Alert! • Again, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have “law” – we all need a container. We need to know and practice the rules before we chuck the rules out. You need an ego before you can give it away. • The gaols are full of people who haven’t (yet) mastered the self-control necessary for an ego
Richard Rohr “No pope, Bible quote, psychological technique, book, or guru can do your journey for you. If you try to skip the first journey you will never see its real necessity and also its limitation; you will never know why this first container must fail you.. Such is the unreality of many people who “never grow up” or who remain narcissistic into their old age.” (Rohr, R, Falling Upwards)
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