“The revolution out of which our tradition came has not ended…”

The revolution out of which our tradition came has not ended; it is accelerating. The movement of those forty million Europeans to the North American continent was only the beginning. There is not place on the globe today that can stand secure and changeless. It is all changing. It is changing before our eyes. No one can predict what will happen to global culture in even the near future. If you have come out of the pilgrim tradition of the children of Israel, from Egypt to the promised Land, and have used that magnificent opportunity only to become a Philistine, then take heed. Do you live comfortably behind high walls and bronzed gates, and worship regularly at the altar of Baal? Are you pleased with the prospects of Social Security and a special pension plan, or the apparent security of America’s nuclear deterrent and the overwhelming power of its society and technology? If that provides comfort, then live in fear and trembling, because it will all be taken away from you as surely as the security of our forebears. I proclaim it.

-Zenos Hawkinson in a sermon in 1978. Hawkinson was a history professor at my denomination’s college and he was addressing a people with strong immigrant memories.

Author: David Swanson

Pastor of New Community Covenant Church in Bronzeville. Collecting signs of life.

1 thought on ““The revolution out of which our tradition came has not ended…””

  1. Do you sit comfortably in your pew each Sunday consuming 84% of your “giving” to buy a professionally prepared Bible lecture in s special separate building from the rest of your life? Do you stand comfortably behind your pulpit lecturing the people of God with zero mutuality, zero heart participation from the gathered priests, and zero production of this ministry to any other saints? Do you spend your week free of marketplace work claiming you have a holy calling and have a greater devotion to the word of God and prayer? Then “live and fear and trembling, because it will all be taken away from you as surely as the security of your forefathers. I proclaim it.”

    You could recognize, with a little re-examination of scripture that these “holy” routines are the opposite of what the scriptures clearly call for. You could recognize that all the proof texts used to justify this folderol are severely twisted. You could repent and change your ways, but you will not. There is so much flattery and man pleasing that feels good on the sweet tooth of your ego.

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