Saturday, July 17, 2010

N.T. Wright on the Darkness Enveloping the Cross

At Redeemer, for almost 5 years, we've been preaching through the 4 Gospels chronologically. We'll finish at the end of October. We're raising the level of Jesus-literacy in our church family.

Tomorrow we're looking at the 4 Gospel texts that piece together Jesus on the cross as he says "It is finished" (tetelestai), and then a number of cosmic events occur as a preview (mini-version) of what's coming down the road (these events are "proleptic eschatological events).

N.T. Wright, at times, writes so beautifully. Here he describes the darkness that enevelopes Golgotha, and the cry of Jesus that comes out of that darkness.

“Out of the unexplained cosmic darkness comes God’s new word of creation, as at the beginning… And all happens because of the God-forsakenness of the son of God. The horror which overwhelmed Jesus in Gethsemane, and then seems to have retreated again for a few hours, came back in all its awfulness, a horror of drinking the cup of God’s wrath, of sharing the depth of suffering, mental and emotional as well as physical, that characterized the world in general and Israel in particular. The dark cloud of evil, Israel’s evil, the world’s evil, Evil greater than the sum of its parts, cut him off from the one he called ‘Abba’ in a way he had never known before. And welling up from his lifetime of biblically based prayer there came, as though by a reflex, a cry not of rebellion, but of despair and sorrow, yet still a despair that, having lost contact with God, still asks God why this should be.” (NTW, Mark for Everyone, 216-217)