Sunday, January 11, 2009

cHesed as Organizing Principal

There is a good conversation going on over at Missional Tribe in the Theology Group's Forum. The topic is : Trinitarian foundation for mission? Read through the various comments and then you will come to a spot where I explain a bit more about cHesed. Here's what I said, since we're in the midst of 40 Days of cHesed here!

Yes, exactly my point! In order to understand someone's shorthand, you have to have their key. Grace did a great job of giving her shorthand and then explaining it.

Matt, without my key you did not understand my intent. And I think this little bit of shorthand is basically pointing to "how do we get to what it is supposed to look like to be the church?" Is that how others understand the point?

So, let's see what it would look like fleshed out some:

In Christ = The reason that I am able to participate in the perichoretic Eternal Community is that I have "put on" Christ (as savior, Lord and elder brother) and my life is now considered to be "hid" in him. I am dressed for "dancing" when I "wear" Christ. [This is where "Christology" aligns for me.]


Like Christ = Christ, as the only perfect human, calls me to be like him -- in his total cooperation with the Father and the Spirit, as well as his faithful cHesed/covenant keeping with God and with his Bride/the Church. (This is possible only as I allow the Holy Spirit to transform and empower. There is no expectation that I am to be like him in his "God" identity.) [Note: I fully understand that many do not have a robust understanding of cHesed and how this impacts how one lives day to day.] [This is where "Missiology" aligns for me.]


With Christ = As I remember who I am In Christ and cooperate with the Spirit's process of making me Like Christ, I will be With Christ -- engaging in whatever "dance" it is that he is doing in conjunction and cooperation with all those who are also "in Christ". [This is where "Ecclesiology" aligns for me.]

I think cHesed is the organizing purpose. Quick definition: the duty to faithfully look out for the best interest of the covenant parties, according to the covenant terms and conditions. To love by submitting to the need of the other, to extend grace by serving the other, to show mercy by initiating that which in needful for the other to keep covenant.

If we have a covenant-making, Triune, perichoretic God, then faithful covenant-keeping (cHesed) is the main thing, as they say.

If you haven't taken a look at Missional Tribe yet, I hope you'll find time to do so. There is some great conversation taking place!


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