Category Archives: The Prophetic Task

Prophetic Task: And So?

I have come to the end of this series, and I will go back into hybernation.  I have ideas for possible future posts, but none are ready for publication.  Should a new series emerge, I will announce them here and … Continue reading

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Prophetic Process: Reorder

Henri Nouwen became interested in trapeze artists shortly before he died, coming to believe that this circus act was a paradigm for the spiritual life: letting go of the first bar, hovering between the bars, and being caught by the … Continue reading

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Prophetic Process: Disorder

Prophets minister between the times– between darkness and light, forgetfulness and remembrance, sin and salvation, despair and hope–between “the kingdoms of this world”‘and the Kingdom of God.  This in-betweenness is what Brueggemann calls disorder, a time of grief. He uses … Continue reading

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Prophetic Process: Order

Order is where the prophetic process begins, because just as there was original righteousness before there was original sin, so also there was Torah (Law) before it deteriorated into torah (legalism).  There was a time when (as with creation) the … Continue reading

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Prophetic Process: The Meat of the Message

We are at a point where a transition post is needed. We have laid the foundation for understanding the prophetic task in the first two segments of this series: the prophetic person and the prophetic paradigm.  Personhood provides the character … Continue reading

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Prophetic Task: Advent Time Out

Advent begins on December 3rd.  So that we can focus on the beginning of the Christian year, I am taking a “time out” from this ongoing series.  It will return on Tuesday, January 2nd. But I want to remind you … Continue reading

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Prophetic Paradigm: Means

Vision and intention are expressed through means.  John Wesley called this ‘practical divinity’–the social holiness (works of mercy) which flows from personal holiness (works of piety).  The prophets turned their intentions into concrete practices, particularly through the  re-establishment of covenant, … Continue reading

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Prophetic Paradigm: Intention

Vision ignites intention, it engages the will.  Intention is the second dimension of the prophetic paradigm.  It takes what we see in the heavens and moves it into action on the earth. Walter Brueggemann describes intention as a consciousness that … Continue reading

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Prophetic Paradigm: Vision

The prophets did not pop up out of nowhere and then disappear.  They were part of something larger than themselves–larger than their location, their time, and their message.  They were threads in God’s larger tapestry of redemption.  I call this … Continue reading

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Prophetic Person: Messenger

We can summarize the personhood of the prophet in a fourth characteristic.  The prophet is a messenger. Morality gives the messenger credibility.  Mysticism gives the messenger content.  And mediation gives the messenger commission.  All this comes together in the words, … Continue reading

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Prophetic Person: Mediator

Prophets personify a third quality. They are mediators.  Just as morality and mysticism are linked, so too are mysticism and mediation.  Prophets are apostles, sent by God to tell what they have seen and heard.  Alan Watts noted this decades … Continue reading

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Prophetic Person: Mystic

The morality of the prophet is connected to a second characteristic of prophetic personhood–the prophet is a mystic.  Mysticism is a necessary pre-requisite if the prophetic task is to occur. For some, the necessity of mysticism takes getting used to … Continue reading

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Prophetic Person: Moral

If we are to understand prophetic task, we must begin with the prophet.  Personhood sets the trajectory for performance.  Character is always the basis of conduct.  Brueggemann recognizes this when he says that the prophetic voice is rooted in something … Continue reading

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On the Edge of the Inside

Years ago, Richard Rohr got my attention when he said we are called to live “on the edge of the inside.”  He calls this an alternative orthodoxy (that is, a genuine orthodoxy that is distinct from certain prevailing views in … Continue reading

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No Exemptions

Calling out empire is a pervasive and never-ending task because empire-making is what fallen-world individuals and groups do.  No longer guided by original righteousness (Genesis 1 & 2), we are gripped by original sin (Genesis 3 ff), manifested in innumerable … Continue reading

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Calling Out Empire

The prophetic task begins by calling out “the principalities and powers.”  One of the tasks of Christian social holiness is to identify and expose evil. It must always be carried out in light of an exhortation to righteousness; otherwise, prophetic ministry … Continue reading

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The Prophetic Task: Introduction

I have made the decision to re-activate Oboedire in order to present a new series of blogs and archive them all in one place–something not possible on Facebook.  The theme is entitled, “The Prophetic Task,”‘and in it I intend to … Continue reading

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