I haven’t posted much lately, on account of being quite busy with multiple projects right now.
But I was reading a manuscript for an upcoming book and found this phrase: the relevant/resistant tension. It was in the context of talking about how emerging churches need to practice that tension along with the ancient/future tension they’re pretty good at.
What it implies is that while the church must find relevant expression within a culture, it also needs to assert a resistance to that culture (at least some elements of it). Cultures aren’t devoid of meaning or morality, so there are some elements of every culture that faithful proclamation of the gospel will resist and prophesy against, so to speak.
One of the issues for the missional/emerging church is this relevant/resistant issue: how do we faithfully proclaim the gospel in a way that speaks to the core dreams and needs of a culture, while at the same time subverting that culture’s worldview?
I wonder if this is very much what the Hebrew prophets were up to, especially when they were prophesying in the midst of exile. And maybe that’s a good picture of what our task is: creating subversive poetry that undermines the worldview of the "empire" and says that another world is possible… that another world is in fact already here (to cop the title of the upcoming book I’ve been reading).