torsdag, april 28, 2011

Om Jesu lignelser alá Snodgrass

I disse dager har vi begynt med 6.termin på Fjellhaug, og dermed også et nytt fag. Denne gangen er det Jesu lignelser som står for tur, og hovedpensumboka er en murstein kalt Stories with Intent: A Comprehensive Guide to the Parables of Jesus av Klyne Snodgrass. Flere av Snodgrass' perspektiv er forfriskende lesing, så det kan bli noen av dem fremover. Dagens sitater (litt klipp og lim) er hentet fra hans utredning om den barmhjertige samaritan (kursivene er forfatterens egne, mens den fete skriften er mine uthevinger):

Does Jesus' focus in vv. 28 and 37 sound like "works righteousness"? Should he not have said "Make a decition for me" or at least "Have faith and follow me"?

We always want Jesus to say words that fit our systems, but he neither fits our systems nor adresses Paul's problem of work righteousness (to say nothing of the fact that Paul has been severely misunderstood). Our systems need to be reorganized to do justice to Jesus' teaching and that of the early church. This parable does not advocate "earning one's salvation"; it advocates living out one's covenant relation with God, which is what Christian faith and the whole Bible seek. To love God with all one's being and the neighbor as oneself is not something less than faith. As was evident with the parable of the Two Debtors, one cannot love God apart from trust and obedience.


Our fear of earning salvation has led to the idea that Christianity is a religion concerned only with what one believes/thinks, not what one is, but this is a shallow understanding of belief. The parable, like most of Scripture, is concerned with identity. In effect, when people ask Jesus "What do I have to do?" he askes in return "What kind of person are you?" The answer to the second question also answers the first (as in the incident with the rich young ruler). The fear of work righteousness is far too exaggerated in most churches. Would that there were an equal fear of being found inactive!

Ikke helt enig med hans utsagn om at frykten for gjerningsrettferdighet er opphisset i de fleste kirker, men det understreker den påfølgende setningen temmelig godt.

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