Robert F. Capon – Parables of Kingdom, Grace, Judgment

In his book, Kingdom, Grace, Judgment – Paradox, Outrage, and Vindication in the Parables of Jesus, Rev. Robert F. Capon takes us on a unique and adventurous look at Jesus’ parables in the larger light of their entire gospel and biblical context. Rev. Capon reminds us that when we begin to dig deeper into the actual parables themselves, we begin to realize that they are strange, bizarre, complex, and disturbing. They are not tidy moralistic stories but try to upend tidy moralistic notions. Bad people get rewarded, good people are scolded, God is often compared to an irritable person, fairness is absent, and the idea of who should be first or be rewarded is turned upside down. The very purpose of the parables, it appears, is not to be nice but to disturb our religious understandings and that is a challenge. As a companion to this study, I have used the blog posts of the Rev. Aidan Kimel at Eclectic Orthodoxy.  This study covers approximately ten weeks.
(Autumn 2022)

Robert Capon – The Sower, pt.1

Jesus speaks in parables because he is aware that his teaching ministry has failed. Everyone is looking for a Messiah to reestablish David’s kingdom under God’s Law. Jesus has failed to overcome and correct his audience’s grossly mistaken expectations of who he is and what he is proclaiming.
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Robert Capon – The Sower, pt.2

In this chapter, Capon explores the themes of Catholicity, Mystery, Actuality, and Hostility and Response that are present in the Sower and that we will be discussing throughout his book.
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Robert Capon – Parable of the Friend at Midnight

In the parable, God does not come to our aid because we ask or because we have invited Jesus into our hearts, or because we have a right relationship with God, but only in our shameless, selfless admission that we are dead without him.
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Robert Capon – Parable of the Great Banquet

The point is that none of the people who had a right to be at a proper party came, and that all the people who came had no right whatsoever to be there. Which means, therefore, that the one thing that has nothing to do with anything is rights.
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Robert Capon – Parable of the Two Sons

We in the church are the second son. We may preach grace from the pulpit and sing “Amazing Grace” in the pews, but deep down we do not like it. It is just too indiscriminate.
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Robert Capon – Parable of the Wicked Tenants

The world is saved only by his passion, death, and resurrection, not by any of the devices that, in its unbelief, it thinks it can take refuge in. Furthermore, that same unacceptability will be the cornerstone of their judgment and of the world’s.
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Robert Capon – Parable of the Wise and Foolish Bridesmaids

God’s intentional tarrying damns the bridesmaids who trusted that God would show up on time. Why? The only answer that we receive from the parable is the same that Job receives from the whirlwind: Who are you to question my wisdom with your ignorant, empty words? Job 38:2.
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Robert Capon – Parable of the Last Judgment (reimagined)

Therefore, if the Greek is simply understood differently, then the goats do not go into an “eternal punishment” (which itself is somewhat a contradiction since no one can learn from the punishment if it is eternal) but they are banished into “an age of correction.”
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