Shuck and Jive
Friday, March 09, 2007
Talpiot Tomb, Resurrection, and Orthodoxy
James ossuary. Possibly the brother of Jesus.
Whether or not we have discovered the DNA of Jesus in the Talpiot Tomb or not, the theological question has been raised. Does the Christian affirmation of Resurrection depend upon the bones, corpse, spleen and what not of Jesus coming back to life? If beyond a shadow of a doubt, it was determined that Jesus died and that his corpse rotted in a grave somewhere just like the corpse of every other human being including that of you and I someday, does that in itself nullify faith in the Resurrection of Jesus or of Resurrection at all?
What is the meaning, value, affirmation, mystery, and joy of Resurrection or Easter Faith?
I really don't like the terms orthodox, heterodox, heretic and so forth. We have had a bloody history involving those categories. Read James Carroll's Constantine's Sword. I don't need to go into all of that here. Yet the term orthodoxy or orthodox Christianity is with us. What is it exactly?
Is orthodoxy as narrow as fundamentalists claim it is?
Do what extent does orthodoxy change or not?
How does orthodoxy respond to what we now know from history, science, and the humanities?
Finally, is orthodoxy the best way to think about faith?
These are some of the questions I raise on a regular basis. They are interwoven. They have a great deal to do with power. Orthodoxy (and those who claim it) is the marker of who is in and who is out--who gets access to authority and power. It is connected with politics in both the church and the secular world. It shapes ideas and retains memory.
April DeConick, historian of the early church, deals with the problems of canonicity (a result of orthodoxy) on her Forbidden Gospels Blog.
Orthodoxy at its most harmful seeks to silence thought or ideas outside of its perceived bounds. As such it fosters ignorance.
Orthodoxy at its best is a well-spring of wisdom.
When does wisdom become ignorance?
Posted by John Shuck at 3/09/2007 04:09:00 AM