September 21, 2011

DT on Ice #1 - air puffers and rubber gloves

Draughting Theology (on Ice) the real-life, face-to-face, get together restarts tonight at Gelato Joe's and the Tropic Ice Deck Bar @ 6:11pm.  We're loosely basing on conversations on the Rob Bell & Don Golden book, Jesus wants to save Christians.  Here's tonight's handout for those who can't make it but want to be involved.

Air Puffers and Rubber Gloves
But first... The introduction to the introduction

1. Courtesy and respect will be shown at all times.
2. Commitment will be made to listen to the perspectives of others.
3. All statements that are not explicit facts must include the attitude of “it seems to me.”
4. All participants will work hard to increase their understanding of the issues between meetings.

“In the Scriptures, ultimate truths about the universe are revealed through the stories of a particular people living in particular place. As [we] explore, the nation of Egypt and the Jewish people feature prominently in the biblical narrative. When we [talk] of Egypt then, we are not [talking] about Egypt today. When we mention the Jews then, we are not speaking of our Jewish friends and neighbors today. We realize that some of these words, such as Egypt and the Jews, have power to evoke feelings and thoughts and attitudes about the very pain and division in our world that [Jesus wants to save Christians and this group] will address. We join in this tension, believing that the story is ultimately about healing, hope,and reconciliation.” (p. 008)

Theology – from the Greek theo meaning “God” and logos meaning “word” - Theology is a word about God.
Draughting – the British variation of draft – here we use it two ways.
  1. Draught – verb – to make a blueprint of – our vision of God is never fully formed, the box we use is always too small, here in this group we strive to hold loosely to what we already have, while always seeking to redraw our theology of God. 
  2. Draught – noun – beer from a keg, you are welcome to have some, but always in moderation. 
OK, now to our topic at hand –
Jesus Wants to Save Christians by Rob Bell and Don Golden
Introduction - Air Puffers and Rubber Gloves
Biblical Text – Genesis 4:1-16 (Cain and Abel)
Now Adam slept with his wife, Eve, and she became pregnant. When the time came, she gave birth to Cain, and she said, "With the LORD's help, I have brought forth a man!" Later she gave birth to a second son and named him Abel. When they grew up, Abel became a shepherd, while Cain was a farmer. At harvesttime Cain brought to the LORD a gift of his farm produce, while Abel brought several choice lambs from the best of his flock. The LORD accepted Abel and his offering, but he did not accept Cain and his offering. This made Cain very angry and dejected. "Why are you so angry?" the LORD asked him. "Why do you look so dejected? You will be accepted if you respond in the right way. But if you refuse to respond correctly, then watch out! Sin is waiting to attack and destroy you, and you must subdue it." Later Cain suggested to his brother, Abel, "Let's go out into the fields." And while they were there, Cain attacked and killed his brother. Afterward the LORD asked Cain, "Where is your brother? Where is Abel?" "I don't know!" Cain retorted. "Am I supposed to keep track of him wherever he goes?" But the LORD said, "What have you done? Listen-- your brother's blood cries out to me from the ground! You are hereby banished from the ground you have defiled with your brother's blood. No longer will it yield abundant crops for you, no matter how hard you work! From now on you will be a homeless fugitive on the earth, constantly wandering from place to place." Cain replied to the LORD, "My punishment is too great for me to bear! You have banished me from my land and from your presence; you have made me a wandering fugitive. All who see me will try to kill me!" The LORD replied, "They will not kill you, for I will give seven times your punishment to anyone who does." Then the LORD put a mark on Cain to warn anyone who might try to kill him. So Cain left the LORD's presence and settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden. (NLT)

Getting our frustrations out first, why is it that the first family, the very first people, who were supposed to be closest to God – physically and spiritually – was already dysfunctional? Why did God create in us the ability to rebel?

What sort of indicators do you experience in your day-to-day life that we are living East of Eden?

Is it your sense that we are moving further east, or have you found ways in which (individually or corporately) movement is headed back westward?

We are east of Eden. Something is not right.

Ursprache – German word and thought for the primal, original language of the human family. It's the language of paradise that still echoes in the deepest recesses of our consciousness, telling us that things are out of whack deep in our bones, deep in the soul of humanity. Something about how we relate to one another has been lost. Something is not right in the word. (p017)

Am I my brother's keeper? Am I supposed to keep track of him wherever he goes?

How does the way in which we relate to one another tell us things are out of whack?

In what ways do you see us harming ourselves?

Do you hear/feel/experience that Ursprache deep within your bones?

What does it say? How does it call?

Is there a way to turn this eastbound train around?
Next Time – 10/5 @6:11pm – the cry of the oppressed – exodus 1:1-2:11, 23-25

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