The Story of the human race has cycled through numerous apocalyptic ages throughout our history and when we are there, it feels like the end of the world. Our current Living in The Story texts lead us readers into Exile with Israel; their previous world has ended and things will never be the same.
At the same time, we encounter the experience of first century Christians after the destruction of the Temple and the defeat of Jerusalem; their world also had come to an end. During both these epochal ages, Judaism and Christianity evolved into something completely different. Something old died and something brand new emerged. A new creation was birthed into the world.
This image of birthing is helpful as we consider how to respond to apocalyptic times. When everything we know, everything we are is in transition, it can feel as if the whole earth is in labor. As I wrote during the traumatic summer of 2020, our world was embroiled in tumult with a deadly global pandemic, threats of economic collapse, climate crises, constant war, rising violence, ethnic conflicts, class divides, and waves of authoritarianism.
As I struggled to understand this societal chaos, I kept reminding myself, as bad as all this is, this is not the worst things have ever been. And I wondered, are we also in labor? Will something completely different be birthed into the world as we make our way through this painful birth canal?Continue reading “Week 38: Revelation”