Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Advocacy


In the eighth chapter of the Gospel of John, we read of a woman caught in sin. The religious authorities bring her to Jesus to judge her. He does challenge her, but first he acts as her advocate. Hugh Halter in The Tangible Kingdom (p.45), has this to say about the passage:

''The powerful revelation is that the God of the universe - the only one who should have genuinely been offended, who could have postured himself as judge and executioner - literally lowers himself to her level and becomes her only friend, protector, and advocate. Yes, he does challenge her lifestyle and asks her to stop, but not until he has postured himself as an advocate. This is key. He addresses her head only after he has her heart.”


In the passage, Jesus stoops down and writes something in the sand, literally stooping to her level. Here we see modelled for us the posture we are to take with others. Here is the posture we take with First Nations groups that have been treated deplorably by ourselves or our family; here is the posture we take with those who are discriminated against because of their sexual orientation. The first posture is advocacy and care for them. Only then can we point them to Jesus for him to challenge them, remembering all the while that Jesus is also challenging us in how he wants us to live our lives.

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