6.2.11

Deconstruction is the hermeneutics of the kingdom of God

I am reading Caputo's 'What would Jesus deconstruct?' It is introduced by Brian MClaren which will immediately raise the suspicions of all those who vilify emerging and postmodern church. MClaren explains how the 'powerful ghost of the Religious Right...hovers ominously over his [Caputo's] right shoulder,' a ghost whose whisperings I am sure MClaren would quickly recognise.

I want to know more about this Jesus who stands 'with the "other".' I have just discovered 'Benny's blog' and I have a feeling that this is a Jesus he has come to know well.

Caputo seems to be asking us whether the church would define Jesus a heretic if he were to come back right now and go about his Kingdom-growing business. This is a question Adrian Chatfield hinted at in his analysis of Jonah at the college quiet day last Wednesday. My Bishop, Alastair Redfern was possibly hinting at this too as he asked us to focus on the radical inclusivity of God's plan for salvation as it extends itself even to the cattle at the close of the story about this often misunderstood prophet. It is a question that I think D'Costa is also asking the church to consider.

The problem with asking what Jesus would deconstruct only to realise that it is the church that he would deconstruct, is that this is the institution to which I have nailed my flag and out of which I will live out this following of Jesus. So, I suppose the 'church' Jesus would deconstruct is the institutional church rather than the church that is the body of Christ, the often invisible church. However, it leaves me in a somewhat uncomfortable place.

I think Caputo wants us to ask not WWJD, What would Jesus do? but What is Jesus doing? And are we really joining in?

Caputo will not think of the New Testament as  politics, ethics or dogmatics but a poetics calling for transformation.

It's stimulating my interest again in the word 'hype' and 'hyper,' which I have explored before in the context of Jesus' radically being 'for us' - hyper in the Greek. With Caputo it is about 'über' being in search of the event that exceeds expectation. Religion is this. It is quite literally 'hype.' Deconstruction rather recovers this idea about religion and redeems it. 'It's all hype,' they say, and have said to me, particularly when I return from New Wine and recount experiences of God going about his business there. It is. New Wine has this vision of something beyond, it dares to hope. 

For Caputo being a 'religious people' is to be a people who 'dream of things that have never been' and ask "why not?" and 'still pursue them.

4 comments:

Dreaming Beneath the Spires said...

Hi Rachel,
Have you changed your font. This seems very hard to read. Perhaps you could check it out with someone else to see if they find it hard too.
Loved your article on Egypt,
Anita

Rachel said...

Thank you Anita - very helpful. I have re-jigged it, hopefully easier on the eyes now.
:-D

Anita said...

Yes, much easier, thanks Rachel!

Rachel said...

Thanks for the update Anita - glad it's better now.

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