Monday, April 12, 2010

Quoting Uncle Walt

Found amidst the Interwebs, thanks to Wedgewood Baptist Church in Charlotte, NC:

We are, all of us, children of the biblical text. We have been conceived and birthed, generated and summoned, given life, by this text and none other. This text keeps having its say among us, by translation and interpretation, by commentary and proclamation, by study and enactment. We must always again, always afresh in every circumstance, come to terms with it.

We spend our life struggling with this text, sometimes struggling for the text, sometimes struggling against the text. The text always has its say among us; it will not go away. Its voice is a haunting one, sounding promises, uttering commands, voicing stories, proclaiming oracles, ejaculating pain, authoring hope. The voice of the text haunts us because we know very well it is a human text filled with endless critical problems—and yet we hear in
it the very voice of God: majestic sovereignty, awesome holiness, passionate grace, weakness made strong.

Because of this text, which will not go away or finally keep silent, we live haunted lives, filled with yearnings for what is not in hand, promises not yet filled, commands not yet obeyed, desires not yet granted, neighbors not yet loved. The old text becomes new text; old story becomes new song. For all those reasons, in gratitude and awe and fresh resolve, we celebrate the new, revised translation, made freshly aware by it that we are indeed haunted children of this haunting text.

And because the text will not go away or be silent, we are destined to be endlessly haunted, uneasy, restless, and on the way.

-Walter Brueggemann