Welcome to just a little bit of Audra's Insanity. As to be expected, this is a place to share a piece of my mind along with my totally random comments, opinions and thoughts. It's one of my creative outlets and where I work on my humor. You'll also find book reviews and information about the latest projects I'm working on. Always random. Often humorous. Occasionally boring. Come laugh. Feel free to cry. But I hope you always enjoy.
Wednesday, June 17, 2015
A More Christlike God
When asked about what God is like, do toxic images come to mind: God the punishing judge, the deadbeat dad, the genie in a bottle? Bradley Jersak wants to right the wrong view of God in his new book, A More Christlike God. What if His love is more generous, his Cross more powerful, and his gospel more beautiful than we’ve dared to imagine? What if our clearest image of God is the self-giving, radically forgiving, co-suffering Love revealed on the Cross?
What is God like? A punishing judge? A doting grandfather? A deadbeat dad? A vengeful warrior?
Believers and atheists alike typically carry and finally reject the toxic images of God in their own hearts and minds. Even the Christian gospel has repeatedly lapsed into a vision of God where the wrathful King must be appeased by his victim Son. How do such good cop/bad cop distortions of the divine arise and come to dominate churches and cultures?
Whether our notions of ‘god’ are personal projections or inherited traditions, author and theologian Brad Jersak proposes a radical reassessment, arguing for A More Christlike God: a More Beautiful Gospel. If Christ is “the image of the invisible God, the radiance of God’s glory and exact representation of God’s likeness,” what if we conceived of God as completely Christlike—the perfect Incarnation of self-giving, radically forgiving, co-suffering love? What if God has always been and forever will be cruciform (cross-shaped) in his character and actions?
A More Christlike God suggests that such a God would be very good news indeed—a God who Jesus “unwrathed” from dead religion, a Love that is always toward us, and a Grace that pours into this suffering world through willing, human partners.
Brad Jersak (PhD) is an author and teacher based in Abbotsford, BC. He is on faculty at Westminster Theological Centre (Cheltenham, UK), where he teaches New Testament and Patristics. He also serves as adjunct faculty with St Stephen’s University (St. Stephen, NB). He is also the senior editor of CWR (Christianity Without the Religion) Magazine, based in Pasadena, CA.