Hallowing the Man

In the debates about faith and belief I don't know if I have anything particularly interesting or helpful to say.

All I can say for myself is that I find the stories about Jesus to be the most profound and captivating thing I have ever encountered. This is not to say I understand everything in the gospels or that there aren't things I find troubling or perplexing in them, even things about Jesus. But there are moments--teachings and actions of Jesus--that defy my ability to describe how they affect me, in the vision they cast and inspire and provoke within me. Having searched far and wide, I've encountered nothing like Jesus. Nothing in the history of philosophy. Nothing in the other world religions, admirable and profound as they are. I experience Jesus as a singularity. Unprecedented. Unreplicated.

And so I hallow the man. I take off my shoes. I consider him to be holy, sacred ground. The location where heaven meets earth. Where the human and the divine intersect.

And in hallowing the man I seek to steep myself in the story that shaped him. I don't understand a lot of the Old Testament. Much of it seems exceedingly problematic and very much unlike Jesus. And yet, this was the story that shaped his imagination and transcribed the trajectory of his life and vocation. Jesus hallowed that story. And if he hallowed it, I'll hallow it. Even if I don't understand it.

And I hallow the tradition--the church and its bible, the New Testament--that is devoted to hallowing Jesus. Through the worship and rituals of the church Jesus is hallowed and remembered and lifted up. And in hallowing Jesus the way I do I want to endure in this, to participate in the tradition that is devoted to this singular task. The Christian church is the tradition that hallows Jesus. So that's exactly where I want to be.

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7 thoughts on “Hallowing the Man”

  1. Yes. Yes. Yes. And in Jesus the hallowing is shared. Whereas in the Cult of Rome Caesar was the Son of God and so all humanity was to be subjected to his hierarchical dominion, with Jesus all of humanity become children of God and so are freed. All humanity is hallowed through Jesus. To me belief means this overthrowing of demeaning hierarchical status by sharing the hallowing. And I can't imagine what all the fuss is about if it doesn't. Alexander Solzhenitsyn quotes a Russian proverb to close his Nobel Lecture: "'One word of truth outweighs the world.' On such a violation of the law of the conservation of mass and energy are based both my own activities and my appeal to the writers of the whole world." That Jesus is the Son of God, Lord, Messiah; these are words that overturn the world. And so Jesus is the Word of God

  2. I too have difficulties reconciling the Old Testament with the mind and actions of Jesus. But as you said, Jesus hallowed it. For me, as I read the Old Testament, there was, through the years, a "death and resurrection" that the children of Israel experienced numerous times, not unlike our experience as individuals. Yet, those times of resurrection continue to elevate our spiritual senses until we finally recognize who we are. That recognition is not only for self, but for the persons who make up our world, family, friend, stranger and alien; and that recognition is of the child of God, the Christ. Each person in each new moment is a birthing of God's child.

    "Fluff & Stuff", some may say. If that is what some wish to think. But I can assure you, walking through the day striving to see the birth of the word in every person is far from "Fluffy".

  3. Hi Richard, could I know the source of the image that you have used ? Just curious to know who the artist is.

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