Christological reflections inspired by Col. 1:15-20
Last Sunday I preached from Col 1 and I encouraged everyone to write their own Christ poem (perhaps in less than 130 words!)... here are three delightful responses. As, always, I'm amazed by our community. Do you have one to add to the mix? PLEASE send it to me if you do!
The first was illustrated - see above.
Here's the second:
In velvet moss and mushroom gills,
in the whorled fingerprint of a chimpanzee.
In the fluffy puff of a fleeing hare,
in labored breath, in broken bread,
in crumbs on the carpet.
In the white hot tears of grief still ripe,
full to bursting, heavy on the vine,
in the dimpled knuckles of a child’s hand.
In every tangle of sinew and bone,
of fur and feather and flesh,
of tooth, talon, tusk,
even in the impossible strangeness
the blue blood of a horseshoe crab
yes, even there.
In the endless droning deep of space,
in the nearness, in the knowing.
In earthworms, eggs, and elephants,
in love and loam and ineffable light,
in all things, Christ is.
And finally, not a poem, but some thoughtful thoughts...
Colossians 1:19 NIV: For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him,
When our small group on Anglicanism looked through the creeds, one of the Trinitarian points made by the Church Fathers we came across is that Jesus had to be fully human, in order be able fully to redeem humanity; and it is clear that this means “fully human”, not fully “man” (or “woman”), since he died and rose again for all of us. Liz touched on another interesting aspect of this on Sunday, when she noted that Jesus’ blood that was shed for us, something we remember weekly in the sacrament, was not male or female blood, it was human blood.
A bit like trying to define the Trinity, expounding on the nature of Jesus’ humanity can be difficult without straying into words that are not quite right. But when musing about whether Jesus clearly identified with women (funny that we simply make a presumption that he identified with men?), three verses came to mind:
Luke 13:34 “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings.” It’s not the cockerel who gathers the chicks.
Mark 5:33 “Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth.” I don’t think that would have been a short account: the woman had been suffering for 12 years. Why did she feel able to talk to Jesus about all those things?
John 8:10 NIV “Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” The men who brought her had already condemned her in their minds (and no doubt all “such women”, as they objectified her). Jesus invited those without sin to cast the first stone. But he didn’t ask the woman whether anyone had cast a stone, he asked where her accusers were, whether anyone had condemned her. I wonder if in fact he was speaking deep into her soul, to those accusing voices who told her she was worthless, that she deserved no better. They had gone. “Then neither do i condemn you”, says Jesus. He identified with her. He spoke to the depths of her need. The fullness of God in a human person.
Colossians 1:19-20 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.