In Christ’s family there can be no division into Jew and non-Jew, slave and free, male and female. Among us you are all equal. That is, we are all in a common relationship with Jesus Christ.
-Galatians 3:28, The Message
Today we're going to read a little bit of theology as a way of reflecting deeper on the truths of scripture. This is an adaptation from book by James Alison. Read it slowly, a couple of times. Let it sink in. Let it lead you into worship today.
The unity which is given in and by the risen Christ is purely given. It is indicative of no superiority at all over anyone else. Anyone who genuinely knows the crucified and risen Christ can never again belong wholeheartedly to any other social, or cultural, or religious group. He or she will always belong critically to all other groups, because all other groups derive their unity over-against someone or some other group.
The only unity to which he or she cannot escape belonging is the new unity of humanity that the Holy Spirit creates out of the risen Christ, the unity which subverts all other unities. And this new unity… is not yet a realized unity, as must be apparent.
The church does not teach that it is the kingdom of heaven, which is the realization of the unity in the new Israel, but that it is the universal sacrament of that kingdom. That is to say, it is the efficacious sign of a reality that has been realized only in embryo. As such, it is radically subversive of all other forms of belonging, all other ways of constructing unity.
- James Alison, Knowing Jesus