9/11 and Brueggemann's 'Disruptive Grace' -- Joe Beach
Well, I got through 9/11... I preached on Eph. 1:10 (as scheduled) about God's Wonderful Plan to reconcile all things in heaven and on earth under Christ...
I tried to somehow tie this to "remembering well" - with insights from Miroslav Volf.
But what I should have done is prophesy.
What I should have said was what Brueggemann would have said:
We are situated, as prophets most often are, in a national security state that imagines itself to be autonomous and ultimate, an act of distorted imagination that puts us on a path to death...
The national security state MAKES PROMISES it cannot keep, promises of well being and safety;
The national security state invites systemic and PERVASIVE ANXIETY from which it offers no respite;
The national security state breeds efforts at a RELIGION OF CERTITUDE that is sure to be idolatrous.
Prophetic ministry is to expose such a state of mind and such an ideology of public life, to name the false PROMISES, the pervasive ANXIETY, and the ill-gotten CERTITUDE. Prophetic ministry, in the face of such lethal practice, offers a world of fidelity that is alternative to the ersatz world of security and certitude.
Against such formidable claims, prophetic ministry proceeds one text at a time -
one oracle, one poem, one narrative, one metaphor -
that leads to VULNERABILITY and SURPRISE.
Such practice is not carping; it is not scolding; it is not confrontation.
It is, rather, a TRUTH that makes free, a HOPE that heals.
There is a desperate waiting among us for such a performance.
Amos, in justifying his venturesome vocation, did so with two statements and two rhetorical questions (Amos 3:8):
Statement: The lion has roared;
Question: Who will not fear?
Statement: The Lord God has spoken;
Question: Who can but prophesy?
From Amos to us, the question lingers and haunts, Who indeed?
Excerpted from Walter Brueggemann, Disruptive Grace (Fortress Press, 2011), 154.