Monday, October 5, 2015

WMTRBW 6: Plotting Goodness

Yesterday in worship, and in our chapter this week, we meet the figure of Abram (Abraham). We read the first part of his story from Genesis 12:1-9, where he is called to go to a land that God will show him with few guarantees for what lies ahead.

In the New Testament book of Hebrews, Abraham and his wife Sarah are described as models of faith:

By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to set out for a place that he was to receive as an inheritance; and he set out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he stayed for a time in the land he had been promised, as in a foreign land, living in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise.  For he looked forward to the city that has foundations, whose architect and builder is God.  By faith he received power of procreation, even though he was too old—and Sarah herself was barren—because he considered him faithful who had promised. Therefore from one person, and this one as good as dead, descendants were born, “as many as the stars of heaven and as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore.” (Hebrews 11:8-12)

The part of this week's chapter on Plotting Goodness that I found most interesting was the idea that in Abram's story, God is revealing to us what true faith looks like--and that in many ways it is different than our conventional definitions of faith. Take a look at the chart below, which lays out the differences McLaren describes in this chapter. 

Which things on these lists sound most like how you've traditionally defined faith--or seen/heard faith defined? Which challenge you the most? Which resonate with you?

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