Hope’s sharp edge

Posted: July 24, 2012 by J in Theology

I like this quote which my colleague Christian read to me the other day:

That is why faith, wherever it develops into hope, causes not rest but unrest, not patience but impatience. It does not calm the unquiet heart, but is itself this unquiet heart in man. Those who hope in Christ can no longer put up with reality as it is, but begin to suffer under it, to contradict it. Peace with God means conflict with the world, for the goad of the promised future stabs inexorably into the flesh of every unfulfilled present. If we had before our eyes only what we see, then we should cheerfully or reluctantly reconcile ourselves with things as they happen to be. That we do not reconcile ourselves, that there is no pleasant harmony between us and reality, is due to our unquenchable hope. This hope keeps man unreconciled, until the great day of the fulfillment of all the promises of God. It keeps him in statu viatoris, in that unresolved openness to world questions which has its origin in the promise of God in the resurrection of Christ and can therefore be resolved only when the same God fulfils his promise.

This hope makes the Christian Church a constant disturbance in human society…

J Moltmann, A Theology of Hope

 

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Comments
  1. “the goad of the promised future stabs inexorably into the flesh of every unfulfilled present”

    This is my favourite line of theology. Utterly memorable

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