I have finished Robert Farrar Capon’s Kingdom, Grace and Judgment and there’s a few more quotes I think you’ll enjoy. Here’s one:
Too often the church preaches resurrection but effectively denies the death out of which alone the grace of resurrection proceeds. Its cure of choice, for its own hills or for the world’s, is not death but simply more doomed living. The church, for example will keep sinners (the morally dead) in its midst only as long as they do not presume to look dead—only as long as they can manage to make themselves seem morally alive. Moreover, ecclesiastical institutions are no more capable of accepting death for themselves than they are of tolerating it in their members. Like all other institutions , they cannot even conceive of going out of business for the sake of grace: given a choice of laying down their corporate lives for a friend or cutting off the friend at the knees, they almost invariably spare themselves the axe. Worst of all, when the church speaks to the world, it perpetuates the same false system of salvation. It is clearly heard as saying that the world can be saved only by getting its act together. But besides being false, that is an utterly unrealistic apologetic. For everyone knows perfectly well that the world has never gotten its act together and never will—that distaste has been the hallmark of its history—and if there is no one who can save it in
its disasters, there is on one who can save it. (p. 474)
As one who has both been cut off at the knees for the sake of the institution and as one who did it to others in more religious days, I agree wholeheartedly. The dying to self and institutions we are so afraid of, is the door into his incredible life.
And on a personal note, don’t expect to hear from me for the next few days. It is finally time to pack up all our junk and take it down the road about 25 miles. We won’t even have Internet service until Monday. So, be well. I’ll talk to you on the back side of this move, if I survive it! And all our numbers will change. The new office address will be: 7228 University Drive, Moorpark, CA 93021. Phone number: (805) 529-1728. Stay well!