Magazine article Tikkun

Light the Spark

Magazine article Tikkun

Light the Spark

Article excerpt

Light the Spark

Jim Wallis

Jim Wallis is editor in chief of Sojourners.

How do Christians receive the new millennium? Is it with the expectation of a "Second Coming"?

First, on that Second Coming thing. Not a big issue at the moment. The religious right doesn't seem to think the Second Coming of Christ is imminent, seeing how much money they all are putting into their houses and the stock market. Plus, they're still trying to take over the Republican Party in several states and who would be left to run things if the Christians were suddenly all caught up together in the clouds? Some conservative Christians still sing "This World is Not My Home, I'm Just a Passing Through," but their investments don't convince you of their sincerity. Y2K has created bigger worries.

As far as progressive Christians are concerned, we've generally held to the theology that says you should live by the values of the kingdom of God right now, rather than worrying about when and how it's all finally going to be implemented. In fact, that's the best way to implement it. So, not much Second Coming discussions going on during or after church.

Are we optimistic? Well, optimism is just bad theology. You know--the cup is half full, look on the bright side, let a smile be your umbrella, etc. It's hard to ask that of the mother we saw in the Burger King the other day helping her three children with their homework, between serving cars at her drive-in window. The politicians boast about her as the success story of welfare reform, but she's poorer than she was before, having to decide now between paying her rent or taking her kids to the doctor. So far, the rising tide has lifted all yachts and hasn't gotten to her boat yet.

But hope is a different matter altogether than optimism. And yes, there is talk about that. Theologically, hope is more a decision based upon what we know and trust about God's purposes. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.