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The universe—vast, with incredible variety and teaming with vitality. A tiny baby escapes the violence of a power-hungry king named Herod. You see it in His teaching—He speaks with authority in rebuking the self-righteous and naming Himself as the Kingdom of God present in our midst. He says, “I am the Way, the Truth, the Life, the Good Shepherd, the Door, the Vine, the Bread and Water of life.” The list is not done. The knife slips and blood runs while cutting up the carrots for supper. A tornado misses a house but takes the one next door.Galaxies in the millions contain stars too numerous to number by human minds. You see it especially in welcomed children, a forgiven adulteress, a tax collector turned disciple, and a commendation for a poor widow putting in her last two coins in the collection basket. For as many consequences of a Fall in a Garden, Jesus brings even more words of grace. We can’t explain the mystery, but nod our heads when the one thanks Jesus for sparing their home and the other thanks Him for sparing their lives.Recent news speaks of a “God particle.” We may name it and even observe it for a fraction of time, but God created it. Even during the 400 years of silence before the new Elijah arrives with honey on his breath and camel’s hair around his waist, God was in the midst of the despair. For we who have a beginning in creation and a new beginning in grace, now are and ever will be the saints of the eternal God—Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Here is how Craddock answers the question, “Is a metanarrative integral to our preaching?
”The position of this essay is Yes, for the gospel to be the gospel, there must be a master narrative, a frame of reference in which life, relationships, Jesus, church, and history are set.
The universe measures colossal dimensions that boggle imagination. The story is old, of the wooden cross and a crown of thorns. We call it His providential care, but those who walk as children of light call it the countless flashes of grace-filled light in a sin-darkened world.
Yet under the most powerful microscope God’s creation exhibits a complexity that refuses to be comprehended. Yet new every day is the forgiveness and reconciliation from the Savior’s sacrifice. The darkness may encroach on His creation, but the light and life of the Maker of all is always stronger, always visible for those with eyes to see and ears to hear. Yes, in faithfulness we live and in faithfulness we wait. Yes, what a spectacular final chapter this story has in store for His chosen people!
The crown of creation, Adam and Eve and all their descendants, are fearfully and wonderfully made.
Each person has a unique personality to go with one-of-a-kind fingerprints. Laugh at a kitten chasing the string pulled by a giggling granddaughter. ” The answer from those first parents set forth a string of dire consequences: disappointment, discouragement, disease, disoriented, disgusted, deviled, doubting, deception, disbelief—and the list is not done. An elderly couple loses their life savings to an unscrupulous financial “advisor.” A visit to the doctor and the diagnosis is cancer.
The father of many nations bears descendants who become God’s chosen people—a nation named Israel.
It will take a while but when they enter the land, it is flowing with milk and honey that provided daily food and victory over enemies, crops to grow and clothes to wear, and so many other blessings for what they would call “Home.” And the response?
In many churches, listeners could come regularly and come away with a sense that the preacher notched every tree, but there’s still no path through the forest.
When the students read their metanarratives, I could tell they had put in significant energy in doing so. I also noticed that they took the familiar shape of salvation history with extensive references to events in the Biblical record.