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- The reason I wrote 'This Risen Existence' was because I read a lot of Lent books that reflected on the lead up to Good Friday but had all stopped before Easter Sunday. As a result we ended up talking more about penitence, temptation and Jesus' death (hugely important though it is) than about his resurrection. So I thought I might ask - how important is the resurrection in your life and faith?
- — EditedHi everyone, My name is Paula Gooder and I thought I'd pop into the group today to tell you a little about me, and a little about my book. I trained in New Testament studies in Oxford (my tutor was Tom Wright ...you may have heard of him?) and since then I have been teaching in seminaries and churches trying to communicate my joy in, and passion about, the Bible. I currently work for the Bible Society in England and Wales as their Theologian in Residence and Head of Bible Engagement. I wrote this book because I love Easter and the resurrection so much and wanted to explore it more. I hope you'll enjoy reading it, but more importantly, I hope you will enjoy thinking more deeply about the resurrection and all it means for us.
- I really liked Paula Gooder's wrap-up of the book, especially the way she displays the in-between nature of our life in these end times. I think we can never be reminded too often that we should be governed firstly by spiritual concerns as we "await the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ" (Titus 2:13). "Resurrection existence is Spirit-filled and Spirit-led existence. The world to come is a world governed not by earthly concerns but by spiritual concerns. The resurrection pulled the world of the Spirit—at least in part—into our own world. The resurrection allowed us to live the Spirit-filled lives that became possible at Pentecost. These four events (death, resurrection, ascension and coming of the Holy Spirit) are closely interwoven and, although we can see their individual threads, they should not really be separated too far from each other. The Spirit continues to explode into our lives just as it did with the earliest disciples, transforming us, helping us to be the people that God wants us to be, groaning with us with sounds that reach deep into the heart of God and drawing us more fully into this risen existence." Gooder, P. (2015). This Risen Existence: The Spirit of Easter (p. 125). Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press.
- I know this comment comes from last week's reading, but I wanted to share how Paula's thoughts on Thomas challenged my thinking. I have been guilty of stereotyping the poor fellow! I appreciated the reflection on the each of the accounts of Thomas in the book of John, instead of simply misreading the last episode where he can appear to be skeptical. In the end, I think his passionate belief stands out to me more clearly now.
- p. 96 It is a good point about the ascension. I volunteer with Lifechurch as part of the church online team. We have a user come in often who is an atheist and uses this as an arguing point. Since satellites have never shown us where heaven is, it must not exist. This may give me some material to talk to him about however I doubt that he will change much. p. 98 "Heaven could exist in a way that transcends our three-dimensional view of the world—though we might still need to develop language that communicates this and doesn’t just fall back on old three-dimensional ways of describing things." Thank you for this thought. P. 105-106 I have never thought of Jesus not being able to be my representative as I have always thought of him as being tempted like us. However, this gives me insight in talking to people who are struggling with the fact that God cannot forgive them. They cannot see Him as being equal to them and do not see Him as representing them.
- P. 83 - I am thankful that we do not have to keep the law either. I cannot imagine what it would be like going to church and having animal sacrifices. Also, so true, we act like the dwarves and do not see the gifts God has bestowed upon us. Love this quote: It is the ultimate Monday morning theology: true, it is theology, but unless it transforms what we do and how we think on Monday mornings (as well as every other day of the week) it is of no value whatsoever. P.87: If we are in relationship with God and not religion, wouldn't we want to be doing the good works as that pleases HIm. Like our relationship with our spouse, we would to please by doing what they would like. I understand that you are saying that we move into this nature by using the sock draw example, relationship is not like that I feel.
- I liked this, never thought of it this way before. Paula Gooder writes: "Not only did he bring the dead to life but he collapsed the boundaries of time, so that an event that should only have happened at the end of time occurred right in the middle of it." The idea of moving a properly "end of time" event into the first century adds another dimension to the resurrection, don't you think?