Friday, February 20, 2009

Billy Bragg "Christ For President" Lyrics

A few months ago I wrote about how we might re-translate the Good News so that it finds a bit more meaning for the 21st century (see "What's in a Title? A Glance at Mark 1:1"). I love this track that Billy Bragg wrote. If anything, at least it gets us thinking...

Let's have Christ for President.
Let us have him for our King.
Cast your vote for the Carpenter
that you call the Nazarene.
The only way we can ever beat
these crooked politician men
Is to run the money changers out of the temple
And put the Carpenter in
O It's Jesus Christ our president
God above our king
With a job and a pension for young and old
We will make hallelujah ring
Every year we waste enough
to feed the ones who starve
We build our civilization up
and we shoot it down with wars
But with the Carpenter on the seat
away up in the capital town
The USA would be on the way prosperity bound!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

“In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb”

They say that the month of March begins like a lion and ends like a lamb. Not only does this axiom find its meaning in the weather patterns of March (beginning fiercely and ending mild), but it also stems from the relative positions of constellations Leo (the lion) and Aries (the ram).

Both of these meanings, however, point us to the paradoxical nature of our world and our own lives – and ultimately God. The changing weather exhibits that nature is both fierce and tender. The shifting stars illustrate that life is never static, even when all seems still in the night sky. And through all of this we know that God is revealed. We are able to observe that God is both fierce and tender. Dynamic and yet unchanging. Moving and yet faithful. We recognize that God is so awesome that we cannot fathom, and yet we also notice that, despite our lack of understanding, God is good and close to us.

I cannot help but think of C.S. Lewis’ words in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe concerning Aslan, the lion: “Is Aslan Safe?” "Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you!" (p. 80).

As the month of March reveals the thaw of spring, let us not forget that God is both infinitely Great and intimately Good – both Lion and Lamb.

The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them.

-Isaiah 11:6