Miroslav Volf on the Christian faith and a culture of love

I found the following quotes from an article by Miroslav Volf. They speak of the Christian faith and a culture of love in Christ. They are insightful and challenging.

The more we reduce Christian faith to vague religiosity which serves primarily to energize, heal, and give meaning to the business of life whose content is shaped by factors other than faith (such as national or economic interests), the worse off we will be. Inversely, the more the Christian faith matters to its adherents as faith and the more they practice it as an ongoing tradition with strong ties to its origins and with clear cognitive and moral content, the better off we will be. “Thin” but zealous practice of the Christian faith is likely to foster violence; “thick” and committed practice will help generate and sustain a culture of peace.

Transformation of the world of violence into a world of love … takes radical change, and not just an act of indiscriminate acceptance, for the world to be made into a world of love. The Christian tradition has tied this change with the coming of the Messiah, the crucified and the resurrected One, whose appearance in glory is still awaited. … Jesus Christ did not come into the world in order to conquer evildoers through an act of violence, but to die for them in self-giving love and thereby reconcile them to God. The outstretched arms of the suffering body on the cross define the whole of Christ’s mission. He condemned the sin of humanity by taking it upon himself; and by bearing it, he freed humanity from its power and restored their communion with God. Though suffering on the cross is not all Christ did, the cross represents the decisive criterion for how all his work is to be understood.

Source: http://reflections.yale.edu/article/violence-and-theology/christianity-and-violence accessed on 23/3/2014

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