Monday, November 8, 2010

Scandalous: The Cross and Resurrection (Part 1)

I recently started reading this new book by Don Carson "Scandalous". Having owned and read many Carson books I didn't expect to be disappoint. Well so far it looks very good, and that's from the 1st Chapter, when I was looking forward to the 2nd and 3rd.

The first Chapter on Matthew 27:27-51a which is titled "the ironies of the cross" picks on four ironies, or even double ironies, from the Crucifixion of Jesus. Carson here offers four points of irony, where Jesus is mocked by various people before and during his crucifixion.
  1. The man who is mocked as king - is king.
  2. The man who is utterly powerless - is powerful.
  3. The man who can't save himself - saves others.
  4. The man who cries out in despair - trusts God.
In exactly what he is mocked, he is actually in truth doing what they say - yet they don't realise it. They mean the opposite, but unwittingly tell us the truth.
Take for example the soldiers who mocked Jesus as King and put a crown of thorns on this head. They didn't realise that in his death he was actually showing he is the King.
Also the case of "He saved others, but can't save himself. ... Let him come down now from the cross"  - yet it is by not saving himself that he saves others.

I remember preparing some thoughts for a Bible Study on the similar passage in Mark's Gospel, but I hadn't quick come to terms with what it was teaching, and how it was - think partly working out how to understand the point of some Narratives besides just their description of what happened.
Carson does well with this passage in making it clear.

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