There are moments in our Christian walk when we hear the rooster crow, and realize we have blown it in our attempts to follow Jesus’ Way in our interactions with others. Let me share a story of a day when I heard the rooster crow. I looked in the mirror and didn’t like what I saw.
Thus, Paul’s personal presence and teaching authority were weighty for sure—not due to his own superior wisdom or human capabilities, but by virtue of his claim to carry around in his body and ministry the indwelling presence, power and message of Christ by the Spirit.
In this section of my thesis, I touch a hot stove, hinting that part and parcel to the wisdom tradition of Jesus and Paul and most teachers through the ages is the acknowledgement that God gives to the church certain individuals with a special calling and training to be sages and wise experts in the spiritual life. This rubs many Americans the wrong way.