Archive for the ‘hope’ Category

the call to discipleship to christ is “the call to join in working for the kingdom of god that is to come.”

“the point of reference of his expressions and renunciations, his activities and sufferings . . . is his call. it is to this, and not to himself, that he seeks to live. it is this that gives him identity and continuity — even, and indeed precisely, where he expends himself in non-identity. he does not require to preserve himself by himself, in constant unity with himself, but in surrendering himself to the work of mission he is preserved by the hope inherent in that mission. the callings, roles, conditions and claims which society lays upon him are therefore not to be examined in regard to whether and how they fully occupy his own self or estrange him from himself, but in regard to whether and how far they afford possibilities for the incarnation of faith, for the concretion of hope, and for earthly, historic correspondence with the hoped-for and promised kingdom of god and of freedom. the criterion for the choice of a calling, for changing our calling, for spare-time activities, as well as for the acceptance and shaping of the process of socialization, is constituted solely by the mission of christian hope.”

– jurgen moltmann, theology of hope


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hope finds in christ not only a consolation in suffering, but also the protest of the divine promise against suffering. if paul calls death the ‘last enemy’ (I cor. 15.26), then the opposite is also true: that the risen christ, and with him the resurrection hope, must be declared to be the enemy of death and of a world that puts up with death. faith takes up this contradiction and thus becomes itself a contradiction to the world of death. that is why faith, wherever it develops into hope, causes not rest but unrest, not patience but impatience. it does not calm the unquiet heart, but is itself this unquiet heart in man. those who hope in christ can no longer put up with reality as it is, but begin to suffer under it, to contradict it. peace with god means conflict with the world, for the goad of the promised future stabs inexorably into the flesh of every unfulfilled present.

jurgen moltmann, theology of hope

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