“… save us from all false choices…”

I’m reading Moltmann’s Trinity and the Kingdom and came across a passage that speaks to a false choice one often encounters in the church today: between a church focused on social justice, on the one hand, and a church focused on the glorification of God, on the other.

Moltmann shows that this is a false choice. He says, “Action and meditation are related to one another in many different ways. The point of intersection emerges from the situation in which the individual finds himself. But the one always conditions the other. Meditation can never lead to flight from the Christian practice required of us because, being Christian meditation, it is meditatio passionis et mortis Christi. Practice can never become flight from meditation because, as Christian practice, it is bound to discipleship of the crucified Jesus. Consequently theology in action and theology in doxology belong together. There must be no theology of liberation without the glorification of God and no glorification of God without the liberation of the oppressed.”

I rather think the Episcopal Church, at its best, avoids this false choice. I think of the many great Anglican thinkers (e.g., Maurice, Temple, Tutu, Tanner) who have kept together a theology of action and a theology of doxology. I hope our church will continue to keep these things together, and avoid all false choices.

O God, by whom the meek are guided in judgment, and light riseth up in darkness for the godly: Grant us, in all our doubts and uncertainties, the grace to ask what thou wouldest have us to do, that the Spirit of wisdom may save us from all false choices, and that in thy light we may see light, and in thy straight path may not stumble; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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