Today we welcome into our community something that is very symbolic of the kind of Christian community that we are and wish to become. I know that sounds a bit odd – how do you become what you are already! Well, becoming is a process – we are always in a state of becoming and evolving. Through every stage of our lives we are becoming someone else; as we integrate new experiences we are changed. As I said the other Sunday, the Hebrew name for God (YAHWEH) carries within it the concept of unfolding; of God becoming what God will become.
Phew, sorry about that, didn’t mean to get quite so philosophical.
Back to the symbol. It’s something relatively small in size but extremely significant for the faith journey that we are on. Church council has made an investment in a book. Ten books actually.
They represent a major step forward in terms of how we understand the literature that underpins our faith story.
At the back of the church there are now 10 copies of The Inclusive Bible – The First Egalitarian Translation. The back cover says: “Intended to free the text from sexist language, gender bias, and social stereotyping and to allow for a full expression of contemporary spiritual struggles and changing social roles. Created with a deep respect for, and scholarly reliance on, original Hebrew and Greek texts”.
This a superb translation and a must-read for those who want take their faith story seriously. It has terrific footnotes and the translators have removed all the paragraph and chapter headings so that the reader can form their own view regarding what the text is about.
This is the translation we will now use for our times together.
I hope you find the translation both helpful and meaningful.
James 2: 14 – 26