N. T. Wright is my favorite biblical scholar. He has helped me work through many issues regarding biblical faith. Here’s an article where Wright addresses the concept of Heaven and how we have gotten it wrong. I highly suggest to not just read this article, but also work through the belief systems that have created a Heaven that keeps us from living out God’s life now. The Good News in all of this is that we don’t have to die in order to live!
First-century Jews who believed Jesus was Messiah also believed he inaugurated the Kingdom of God and were convinced the world would be transformed in their own lifetimes, Wright said. This inauguration, however, was far from complete and required the active participation of God’s people practicing social justice, nonviolence and forgiveness to become fulfilled.
Once the Kingdom is complete, he said, the bodily resurrection will follow with a fully restored creation here on earth. “What we are doing at the moment is building for the Kingdom,” Wright explained.
Indeed, doing God’s Kingdom work has come to be known in Judaism as “tikkun olam,” or “repairing the world.” This Hebrew phrase is a “close cousin” to the ancient beliefs embraced by Jesus and his followers, Wright said.
N. T. Wright has a new book out called When God Became King. In it he argues that we have been misreading the Gospels. I pre-ordered the book about a month before it came out and was exited when it showed up on my Kindle last week. Since I’m still reading it, I am not going to comment. However, here is a video if you are interested in what Wright might have to say:
There is a UK project called the BigBible Project. The hope is to get more people to integrate the bible into their lives. It sounds like a wonderful project.
N. T. Wright is a supporter of the project. He he even had an hour question and answer session online! I think this is pretty cool. You can listen or watch the interaction. Here are some of the questions (there were 27 in all):
1. Why is Lent important and why is Mark important this Year?
2. How did you choose the language for your NT translation?
N. T. Wright sat down with Logos to discuss digital tools for Bible study, the importance of original language study, some favorite books, and more. He has some very enlightening comments and calls for a bigger global vision. Check it out!
Jesus came to help us discover who we really are, and sometimes, as with Jesus’s first followers, it takes a while for people to figure it out, and they make mistakes as they’re doing so—but they’ll get there eventually.
I love that! As I fumble and stumble as I try to follow Jesus, I take comfort in knowing that I’ll get to where I need to be eventually…and you will too as you continue to abide in the love of God through Jesus.