This evening we are gathering to discuss Chapter 3 “The Cross and Power” and Chapter 4 “The Cross and Identity” of Looking Through the Cross.
In chapter 4, Tomlin posits that our identity must be founded upon Christ crucified. Gal. 2:20, Rom. 8:17, 1 Cor. 2:2. Tomlin says that this identity is found, however, by looking outside ourselves to Christ (p. 96). But can this new identity also be revealed by looking through the cross deeper into ourselves – not only externally but internally? Can Christ be found and make himself known not only from without but also from within? Paul says that “in him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28) and in him all things hold together (Col. 1:17). Or as Jesus himself says: “The kingdom of God is within you.” Luke 17:21. Writing in the 4th century, Hillary of Poitiers commenting on Isaiah 66:1 (“Heaven is my throne and earth is my footstool”) expands this understanding of the indwellingness of God and says that “It was written that in all born and created things God might be known within them and without, overshadowing and indwelling, surrounding all and interfused through all . . . In this wise does God, from within and from without, control and correspond to the universe; being infinite He is present in all things, in Him Who is infinite all are included.” On the Trinity, I.6. Is it possible to have our identity transformed by looking deeper within ourselves?
Please remember the offerings on Wednesday evening:
· Trinity is continuing its series on “Confronting Evil.” The discussion this week is “Evil within Creation” and the talk is being given by Bishop Fitz Allison. Dinner at 5:30 (please let the church know if you are coming to dinner) with the talk beginning at 6:00.
· Messiah has a joint Wednesday Lenten program with and at St. Phillip’s. Dinner is at 5:45 (please let the church know if you are coming to dinner) followed by a study. Evening Prayer is at 7:30.
· St. Nicholas is continuing with the Pre-sanctified Liturgy beginning at 5:30 pm. The service is a solemn Lenten Vespers with the administration of Holy Communion
Dinner is 6. The menu is potato soup. Discussion about 6:45. Hope to see you here.
Lord, you have searched me out and known me; *Psalm 139
you know my sitting down and my rising up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
You trace my journeys and my resting-places *
and are acquainted with all my ways.
Indeed, there is not a word on my lips, *
but you, O Lord, know it altogether.
You press upon me behind and before *
and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; *
it is so high that I cannot attain to it.
Where can I go then from your Spirit? *
where can I flee from your presence?
If I climb up to heaven, you are there; *
if I make the grave my bed, you are there also.
If I take the wings of the morning *
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
Even there your hand will lead me *
and your right hand hold me fast.