Posts Tagged ‘Political Statements’


Luke 1 (New Living Translation): https://www.bible.com/bible/116/LUK.1.nlt#!

Tradition holds that Luke was a travelling compatriot of Paul, until a dispute separated them. He is most likely from an upper-crust family as he was a physician, who has sought to write an “orderly account of the history of the early church”. Luke is what is known as a synoptic gospel, stating it used material from the Gospel of Mark (believed to have been scribed by John Mark, whose parents owned the Upper Room, from the stories of Peter—yes that Peter) and the mysterious Q document. Q is allegedly a document of the sayings of Jesus that Matthew, and Luke used to complete their gospels. It is quite a leap of academic belief, unless, you begin to understand the possibility that Q could be bits and pieces of oral history, and from the non-canonical gospels that were used to flesh things out. Much easier to assume a Q than to answer how those cast aside as not part of the meta-narrative got into the meta-narrative.

Aside from that, the writings of Luke show that the drive was to change the status quo, and challenge the concept of patriarchy and authoritarian rule (the empire itself).

The first step is the call to Zechariah and Elizabeth, an elderly barren couple. Both in the priestly lines, and high up in the religious structures, that at this point were being used as part of the Empire’s oppressive structure via the Herod Family. This couple was already an outlier, seen as how can God call them to the Holy of Holy Mysteries (and yes Zechariah when he entered this physical space would have a rope tied around his ankle just in case he dropped dead due to not being worthy), yet not have blessed them with a child (read son due to cultural patriarchy). Zechariah and Elizabeth are a new reality allegory of Abraham and Sarah. Zechariah is struck silent for not believing. And by such, the feminine voice of the journey emerged through Elizabeth.

The first step showing the backwardness of oppression. The next was literally the messenger, Gabriel speaking directly to Mary. Someone who had no voice in her own culture outside of a bargaining/contract for child bearing of men. But seen as even less valued by the Empire where literally soldiers of Roman citizenry could use the peasants however they were seen. The hometown of the girl was the equivalent size to Bassano, AB, and if lucky people would travel at most 40 kms away from home in their life time. Her betrothed, Joseph, was a carpenter-though a better translation would be labourer, more of what we would see as a handyman, not necessarily a finish carpenter. Those with that expertise in the lower classes were used to craft forms of execution for their own people.

Mary’s voice had never been heard or found. Yet this was the voice the Holy Mystery wanted to hear. One can only imagine the conflict and off-screen dialogue that took place when Gabriel came to empower the equality of creation as told in the ancient Eden myth on Day 6. The gospel of Matthew shows this through Joseph’s needs and voice being second to that who would carry the Son. A story that is often missed in meaning in the patriarchal world that continues. Mary had a decision to wrestle through.

Think/mull it through spend time drawing or writing the conversation out from Mary’s perspective (and Elizabeth’s from hers). What would be going through your mind? Your heart? What about your understanding of faith?

As this chapter progresses and Mary is put out to visit relatives. How often is the pregnant child without support sent off still today to other relatives? In a tribal ancient society, where no matter the function faith/religion is taught by the women as children do chores. Think of the reality of the story the grandmotherly Elizabeth is sharing about the life growing in her? The dichotomy of old and young wisdom keepers carrying those that would shake their world.

Why else when John the Baptist/Harbinger was birthed would the men not believe the name of the baby and must go to Zechariah? Why? Without the voice of the man, they probably assumed Elizabeth had gone nuts. Yet Zechariah confirmed the wisdom of his wife.

Mary’s song was confirming the shaking of the establishment to come. She knew who she was carrying, and even in these early weeks could grasp the earth shattering changes to come.

John the Baptist, why would he go to the wilderness? Born into two priestly lines. More than likely would have fit within the Pharisee and Sadducee sects, yet he opted to leave. Why? My contemplation tells me that the set sects in authority did not like the birth story that did not fit their tradition. Their tradition that kept them within power, under the Herod family, under the Empire. For John’s story did not fit.

Which left John to choose between two other paths (obviously these 4 paths had many sub-sects, but for ease historians usually only speak of the four).

The Zealots. Those that held to Maccabean tradition that there would be a Judas Maccabeus to physically over throw the Empire through a blood war. This is why at this time in history in any given moment there was approximately 400 active war chiefs like this leading the charge, and would routinely be rounded up and their crucified bodies would litter by-ways and highways to holy sites to warn off Jewish rebellion.

This was not the sect or path that John chose (though a Zealot would choose his cousin’s).

Chances are from the description he was an Essenes, one who chose a wilderness exile to be away from the corrupt structures. A hermitage life (think a Thomas Merton type or the ancient desert fathers, an aesthetic) where the time alone of growth was to commune deeper within the Holy Mystery.

This was the group that called to John, and John joined to continue his growth, so that he could lay the foundation work for something different. Not war, but a resistance of non-violence, equality, justice, hope, faith, joy, peace and L-O-V-E.

This was the first chapter of a gospel (gospel is a political statement, it is declaring the agenda of an Emperor, so by writing using that term the early followers of the Way knew they would be targeted as they were calling out Rome)…

The women led in a resistance of defiant change.

For all were people.

All were worthy.

Brunch & Bible is a simple gathering, sharing a potluck meal, and exploring the text in group, and sharing wisdom. Our journey has chosen the writings of Luke from the Christian Testament, watch for more thoughts as we continue every 2 weeks.

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On this soggy Saturday I took time to re-introduce my kids to the Original Star Trek thanks to Netflix. Yes they quite enjoyed the Trouble with Tribbles, but it is the Mirror Universe story that strikes a chord in this reflection.

For those unfamiliar it is a story of a transporter miscue during an Ion storm that projects Kirk and company into an alternate timeline where the Federation is warlords running an empire akin to a space Nazi-Roman regime. It shows a visual example of the true and shadow selves lived out. For within the Mirror Universe you see the shadow of the true form. How it works brilliantly, is that from either perspective the Shadow exists.

This brings us into the Aquarian Gospel sending out passage in chapter 122:

The Christines spend seven days in prayer. Jesus gives his charge to the twelve and sends them forth on their apostolic ministry, with instructions to meet him in Capernaum.

1. The Christines prayed in silence seven days; then Jesus called the twelve aside and said,
2. Behold, the multitudes have thronged about us everywhere; the people are bewildered; they wander here and there like sheep without a fold.
3. They need a shepherd’s care; they want a loving hand to lead them to the light.
4. The grain is ripe; the harvest is abundant, but the harvesters are few.
5. The time is also ripe, and you must go alone through all the villages and towns of Galilee and teach and heal.
6. And then he breathed upon the twelve and said, Receive the Holy Breath.
7. And then he gave them each the Word of power, and said, By this Omnific Word you shall cast spirits out, shall heal the sick and bring the dead to life again.
8. And you shall go not in the way of the Assyrians, nor Greek; you shall not go into Samaria; go only to your brethren of the scattered tribes.
9. And as you go proclaim, The kingdom of Christ has come.
10. You have abundantly received, and freely you shall give.
11. But you must go in faith; provide yourselves no crutch to lean upon.
12. Give all your gold and silver to the poor; take not two coats, nor extra shoes; just take your wands.
13. You are God’s husbandmen and he will never suffer you to want.
14. In every place you go search out the men of faith; with them abide until you go from hence.
15. You go for me; you act for me. They who receive and welcome you, receive and welcome me;
16. And they who shut their doors against your face, refuse to welcome me.
17. If you are not received in kindness in a town, bear not away an evil thought; do not resist.
18. An evil thought of any kind will do you harm; will dissipate your power.
19. When you are not received with favour, go your way, for there are multitudes of men who want the light.
20. Behold, I send you forth as sheep among a pack of wolves; and you must be as wise as serpents and as harmless as the doves.
21. In all your language be discreet, for Pharisees and scribes will seek a cause for your arrest in what you say.
22. And they will surely find a way by charges false to bring you into court.
23. And judges will declare that you are guilty of some crime, and sentence you to scourgings and to prison cells.
24. But when you come to stand before the judge, be not afraid; be not disturbed about the way to act, the words to speak.
25. The Holy Breath will guide you in that hour, and give the words that you shall speak.
26. Of this be full assured; It is not you who speaks; it is the Holy Breath that gives the words and moves the lips.
27. The gospel that you preach will not bring peace, but it will stir the multitudes to wrath.
28. The carnal man abhors the truth, and he would give his life to crush the tender plant before the harvest time.
29. And this will bring confusion in the homes that were the homes of stagnant peace.
30. And brother will give brother up to death; the father will stand by and see men execute his child; and in the courts the child will testify against the sire, and gladly see its mother put to death.
31. And men will hate you just because you speak the name of Christ.
32. Thrice blessed is the man who shall be faithful in this coming day of wrath!
33. Go now; when you are persecuted in a place, go seek another place.
34. And when you meet a foe too great for you, behold, the son of man is at your door, and he can speak, and all the hosts of heaven will stand in your defence.
35. But do not hold your present life in great esteem.
36. The time will come when men will take my life; you need not hope to be immune, for they will slay you in the name of God.
37. Men call me Beelzebul and they will call you imps.
38. Be not afraid of what men say and do; they have no power over soul; they may abuse and may destroy the body of the flesh; but that is all.
39. They do not know the God who holds the issues of the soul within his hands, who can destroy the soul.
40. The Christ is king to-day, and men must recognise his power.
41. He who loves not the Christ, which is the love of God, before all else, can never gain the prize of spirit consciousness.
42. And they who love their parents or their children more than they love the Christ can never wear the name of Christ.
43. And he who loves his life more than he loves the Christ cannot please God.
44. And he who clings to life shall lose his life, while he who gives his life for Christ will save his life.
45. When Jesus had thus said he sent the twelve away by twos, and bade them meet him in Capernaum.
46. And they went out through all the towns of Galilee and taught and healed in spirit and in power

 

In the Mirror Universe Kirk, Scotty, McCoy and Uhura had to play different roles to survive, learn a new cultural context and understanding. Yet they also sowed seeds of life where they came from. Where things were different, where it was mutual collaboration, not might makes right mentality that caused growth.  Through common ground.

This was antithesis within the Mirror, where barbarity ruled, where advancement was through subterfuge and assassination. Actually, a very good example of the Roman Empire Brother Jesus and his group existed in. These behavioural patterns within the Ancient Roman Empire permeated through to other cultural ruling structures to ensure survival, but also allowing the oppressive classes to thrive.

This was the world the gossiped about bastard born son of the village girl, that the carpenter was suckered into marrying. Not valued or respected in his own community, but out into the Empire lands spreading a gospel of transformation. The very fact it was called a gospel was proving it to be a political statement.

This was the transformation message of compassion, interconnectedness, self-love/healing/worth, and living out of the core of the Cosmic Christ within.

With this message taken out by Brother Jesus’ students— the Mirror Cracked.

And the Empire was challenged.

Much like the seeds sown by our world’s Kirk, the Mirror Universe Spock.  The mirror got a hairline fracture.

So today, as you prayerfully consider how the Christ within is calling you out into your own world to live life. Ask yourself…how will you create that hairline fracture today? In this moment.

How will you crack the mirror?