A Peaceful Perspective... February 13, 2012

February 13, 2012, Volume 3, Number 2 Online at http://anisa.org.za/

Anabaptism is a biblical, Christian-faith movement that embraces the life, teachings, and witness of Jesus Christ and strives to embody these as normative in the everyday Christian walk.

Column: Discovering Christ in Our Story

An Anabaptist hermeneutic, or way of reading scripture, is usually characterized as “Christ-centered”, that is, with the figure of Jesus as the one around whom the story gathers. Putting Christ at the center, however, presupposes something even more basic: that there even is a center which draws in the other lines of scripture. This is not something to be taken for granted, for millions of Christians read the Bible as though it were an assemblage of unrelated words, phrases, and stories, each part enough on its own to legitimize some particular practice of the church or behavior of human beings in the name of being “biblical”. In such a view, the Bible does indeed seem “flat”,* one part neither rising above another, giving definition to the landscape, nor distinguishing itself from another, instead remaining hidden as part of an undifferentiated field. Yet if it is necessary that parts—even ill-defined ones—do stand together in some way to make a whole, then it figures that that standing together depends upon fundamental distinctions which are revealed as essential when the whole is broken and ceases to be a whole. Or, in other words, if the relationship of parts is possible only because of their differences, then any ultimate meaning of the Bible must also depend upon the visibility of each part in all its uniqueness. Somewhat paradoxically, however, the importance of each and every part being seen –their basic equality as parts of one whole—gives rise to a basic inequality—the reality that some stars shine brighter than the others. For Anabaptist hermeneutics, that light “outshining” is one, Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ, “the bright morning star” (Rev 22:16). more >>
Source: ANiSA News