9.9.10

Christus Victor victoriously!


This passage, as I listen to it this morning, raises a couple of issues for me. One is about doctrine, the other is about the reading of scripture aloud.

Primarily, it seems to shine its light on that facet of the 'multi-faceted atonement gem' that is - Christus Victor. Here I do not hear Penal Substitutionary atonement. I continue to be fascinated by church expressions of this doctrine, the package that rises up around it, our tendency to polarise and mis-judge and misunderstand one another. I will probably grapple with how to express what happened at the cross as I seek to communicate the expansiveness of Christ's victory so that I do not unhelpfully simplify it. I guess this is where with Barth, we become most frustrated by the inadequacy of any language vehicles.

The second issue it raises for me revolves around 'the clergy voice'. I have been discussing this on placement with a friend who says he sometimes discusses it with his own vicar father who has a tendency to use this voice. I remember as a child, feeling rather patronisingly sorry for these vicars who to me, quite obviously did not understand the beauty of what they were saying, for how could they not speak passionately about it?

I grew up to become an English teacher, demonstrating to children how they might use their voices to bring their reading alive. I wonder, is the clergy voice more a male tendency than a female one? Are there any women who read the scriptures in 'that particular voice'? What is its purpose? Is there some theological thinking attached to it akin to 'more of you, less of me God!' or 'do not distract your congregation with your personality?' Does this then slightly lessen the idea that God will use our personalities for his purposes and called us specifically rather than by type?

I can not imagine ever using the clergy voice. Can you convince me of any reasons why I should, however, give this a bit more thought.

I was so captured by this reading of Colossians chapter 2 with the obvious accent and the very real enthusiasm.

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