While I’m ruminating on the future of yon blog, I must report on the latest book I’m reading. It’s by John Dominic Crossan, author of A Historical Jesus, which I tried to read a few years and simply got bogged down. It’s a fantastically researched book but it got a bit too dry for Ms. Short Attention Span.
I have a different feeling about his latest book, God & Empire: Jesus Against Rome, Then and Now. It’s about the United States and its (arguable) status as the new Roman Empire. Of course, we don’t claim to be an empire, but there are plenty of people who would call us an empire, whether admiringly or critically. God & Empire is probably going to be a disturbing book, both for me and any Christian who reads it. Rather than try to summarize arguments I haven’t read yet, I’ll quote the questions he poses in his introduction:
Since the Old Roman Empire crucified our Lord Jesus Christ, how can we be his faithful followers in America as the New Roman Empire? …Is our Christian Bible violent or nonviolent – is it actually for or against Jesus’s nonviolent resistance to “this world”? …Is Bible-fed Christian violence suppporting or even instigating our imperial violence as the New Roman Empire?
Yikes. Stay tuned.