What Makes Up a Christian Imagination?


Interesting list of 12 components of a scriptural imagination.
  1. The human creature is broken to its very core and it is incapable of rescuing itself from its foolish, stiff-necked, irrational, and demented lot in life. The creature is not afraid to be honest about this fact.
  2. The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob has revealed himself supremely in the life and work of Jesus Christ and chooses to rescue this creature in the most "I'll be damned!" surprising ways. This God is a mystery—to be enjoyed, but never to be mastered. Though this God is often silent, he is never absent.
  3. Because Christ stands at the centre of the cosmic order, the created realm can be properly regarded as the beloved world of God and a sphere for creative exploration, requiring no extra justification than sheer wonder in the peculiarities of this world.
  4. If the Spirit is responsible for creation's order, it is important not to think of this order like that of a factory assembly line. It is instead an irrepressibly dynamic order, yielding new configurations of life and prompting praise to a God whose goodness is revealed through all the intensely particular things in creation.
  5. The biblical "household"—which includes both actual and adopted relatives, both biological and "spiritual"—matters more than the nuclear family.
  6. Individual human meaning is realized to the extent that it is deeply embedded within the concrete Body of Christ, rather than by means of self-realization.
  7. Allegiance is given to the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church, the global and historic body of Christ, and not to America or Argentina or Armenia. Whatever pleasure we may derive from being American or Argentinian or Armenian is rightly ordered by one's prior allegiance to the civitas Dei.
  8. Marriage is a holy vow that remains incoherent outside of the life of the church. The bonds of marriage are sustainable only in allegiance to the people of God who together vow to sustain husband and wife—from friendship to engagement to wedding, and on through the later years of married life.
  9. The wisdom of the elders is privileged over the innovations of the youth, but the elders are never threatened by the novelties of the young. The new and old are wrestled out in conversation, which is another way of saying that a healthy tradition is an internal argument carried on by all members of the community, each in their own way, joined at a common table.
  10. Heroes are people of questionable character who often remain unnamed and unknown to us, whose doubt is not contrary but in fact integral to a living faith, and whose ambiguous lot in life is not at odds with the God whose promises are so often fulfilled beyond death. Joy, not happiness, marks the virtue of the hero because joy can account for suffering, while happiness cannot.
  11. Though the "wicked" flourish over and against the sovereign rule of God, they will never be given the last word. The wicked never get away with their acts of injustice. Evil is real and it is named.
  12. The need to laugh, chiefly at ourselves, is paramount. A good sense of humour is required because of the weird and fantastic nature of human life, but, even more importantly, because comedy, not tragedy, will have the final word in the economy of God.


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