The universe flows along, and whether you acknowledge it or not, you are doing one of two things: flowing with the grain of the universe, or against it. The grain of the universe is Love itself. Which makes even more sense when it becomes acknowledged that sin is anything that isn’t of Love.
Many Christians want a theology of divine Vengeance and wrath. Neither of these fit the flow of the universe, and in fact, are slag from the theology of justice.
The very same people who want to cling to an ideology of The Wrath or Vengeance of God generally don’t want it upon their own lives, but are perfectly ok with it being upon the lives of others. Mainly their enemies. Jesus came to subvert that kind of thinking in the Jewish tribes, and was very plain about it.
What many of us, myself included until recently, tend to do is literalize the metaphors about God’s wrath, and ignore the passage explaining what His Wrath is, and what it isn’t.
David said it best in psalm 7, where he attributes God’s wrath to being the consequences of sin. The boomerang effect. Not that God loses His temper, or that God sits up in Heaven every day full of anger at any who have sinned, though taken out of context and exegeted poorly we can in fact make that portrait of God.
The wrath of God is simply summed up as this: the wages of sin is death.
When you work for a company, who pays your salary? For the wages of DHL work is, I dunno. Let’s say $540 a week. Does DHL pay that, or does UPS pay that? Of course the answer is DHL. Likewise, it’s the same with sin.
When you were a slave to sin, your payment for working within sin was death. God didn’t pay that out. In fact, one could say that you were punished more by the consequences of your sin, than for your sin. When you sin, it is specifically by going against the grain of love. Somehow, you’re missing it in one of two ways: you’re not loving God, or you’re not loving your neighbor as yourself. Upon those two hangs all the Law and the Prophets.
Now, saying that the Wrath of God is a metaphor for the natural consequences of going against the grain of the universe doesn’t mean you’ve got nothing to worry about. The consequences are still very real, in spite of not actually being made up of God’s Anger.
It is for this reason that the apostle exhorts us to not abide in sin, just so that grace may abound. How can those who are going against Gods created, universal flow, still represent Him?
And before people make the claim that all of this is just eisegesis, no. Only some of it is. We operate in eisegesis on a daily basis, when we think for ourselves(you heretics you :P). For instance, is it right or wrong to start a fire in your house and burn the house to the ground? (Don’t answer that unless you wish to operate conversely in eisegesis. There’s no verse to exegete on this concept.)
Jesus came and gave us the proper way to do both, exegete and eisegete. However, many Christians I know are not willing to learn eisegesis, and would rather rely on exegesis, which makes an unfortunate imbalance in their theology. But that’s another blog for another time.
The point of my musings and inspiration coming from the sermons I’m listening to while comparing it to the scriptures, is this: quit literalizing metaphors, and just begin to do what Jesus said to do: Love God, and love your neighbor. Flow with the grain of the universe.
~The Christian Mystic