Jesus and the Jolly Roger: Part 1, The Kingdom of God Is Like Pirate

This summer my son and I watched a pirate documentary series, and it put me in mind of a series I did five years ago entitled "Jesus and the Jolly Roger." The series was inspired by my friend Simon Nash who put me onto the book by Kester Brewin Mutiny! Why We Love Pirates, And How They Can Save Us. In thinking again about pirates this summer, I revisited those old posts and wanted to share them again:

I found Brewin's book utterly fascinating and fun, a hard to classify book that fuses theology, history, pop culture and economics. That said, this short series is not a review or accurate summary of Brewin's book, which is more about economics than theology. This series, rather, are riffs inspired by Brewin's take on pirates.

Let's start by asking the obvious question: Are you serious, pirates

Yes, I'm serious. I'm taking a cue from Jesus, his parables in particular. Jesus's style in telling his stories was often to jolt or startle his audience into new perceptions. In describing the kingdom of God Jesus would make comparisons that were, by turns, shocking, charming or bewildering.

The kingdom of God is like a son who asked his father for his half of the inheritance.

The kingdom of God is like a farmer going out and sowing seed.

The kingdom of God is like a manager ripping off his boss.

The kingdom of God is like a treasure hidden in field.

The kingdom of God is like a net full of fish, some valuable some trash.

The kingdom of God is like a wedding banquet where everyone rejects the invitation.

The parables are not moral fables. Jesus used comparisons like these not to make a moral point but to draw our attention to some facet, some aspect of the kingdom of God.

So that's what we're going to do in this series.

The kingdom of God is like a pirate...

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