Stanley Hauerwas & the Church as God’s New Language

An old seminary essay from 2004. I was eager to probe the writings of Hauerwas and looking for an excuse to dig into my recently purchased Ante-Nicene Fathers collection. For a 24 year old, I think I was on the right track. “Your very lives are a letter that anyone can read by just looking at you.” (2 Corinthians 3:2…

Election Day Prayer (Stanley Hauerwas)

Sovereign Lord: Foolish we are, believing that we can rule ourselves by selecting this or that person to rule over us. We are at it again. Help us not to think it more significant than it is, but also give us and those we elect enough wisdom to acknowledge our follies. Help us laugh at…

QUOTABLES: Adventurous Colony in a Society of Unbelief

“The church exists today as resident aliens, an adventurous colony in a society of unbelief. As a society of unbelief, Western culture is devoid of a sense of journey, of adventure, because it lacks belief in much more than the cultivation of an ever-shrinking horizon of self-preservation and self-expression . . . . When we…

Cruciform Justice 1: Introduction

How long, O LORD, must I call for help before you listen, before you save us from violence? (Habakkuk 1:2-4) He came closer to the city, and when he saw it, he wept over it, saying, “If you only knew today what is needed for peace! But now you cannot see it! (Luke 19:41-42) There…

A Faith Worth Living & Dying For?

I’m preparing a message on the stoning of Stephen this Sunday. Here’s something to ponder from William Willimon in his commentary on Acts: Stanley Hauerwas has written about the mass suicide at “Jonestown” when hundreds of followers of Jim Jones and his “People’s Temple” took their lives and the lives of their children (p. 106)….

Some Key Christian Influences

We are largely the product of the many influences — both good and bad — that shape the people we have become.  We’re like lumps of clay that over time have been shaped and molded by a hundred different influential hands — and experiences and words and ideas and moments and conversations and books and…

QUOTABLES: The Cost of Following Jesus

“The basis for the ethics of the Sermon on the Mount is not what works but rather the way God is. Cheek-turning is not advocated as what works (it usually does not), but advocated because this is the way God is — God is kind to the ungrateful and the selfish. This is not a…

Resident Aliens 2

Chapter 2 of “Resident Aliens: Life in the Christian Colony” by Hauerwas & Willimon engages the issue of the church’s engagement with the powers-that-be.  In typical Hauerwasian fashion, they suggest the church focus it’s energy on being the church — a distinct, alien tribe that remains faithful to it’s own life shaped by in the…