Anderson Jeremiah is an Anglican theologian and priest in the Church of England. He lectures on World Christianity, Christian Theology and Politics in Lancaster University. Anderson has published widely on the interface between Theology, Faith, and Politics.
Given the precarious nature of the planet we call home, the need for a scandalous and subversive kingdom animated by the Spirit of God, which advocates justice, mercy, compassion, and healing to the creation, couldn’t be more urgent.
The ecclesiological model that emerges from reading Paul and Mouffe could allow us to position the church itself as a politically and theologically diverse community within the larger society. The role of the church is not to strive towards articulating one uniform voice, both within or in public spaces, but highlight various and even rival voices.
As apostles of Jesus, in the face of hatred and violence, Christians are called to embody a culture of healing and transformation. Being witnesses to the risen Jesus Christ is an existential commitment to pursue justice and practice love.
The story of Mary, Joseph, and Jesus is nothing but the story of people fleeing the violence of an authoritarian empire, though the glitter and celebration of Christmas may have muffled the brutal reality of migrants and refuges seeking sanctuary from death. It is in the midst of such imagined Christmas that the veracity of homeless migrants dying in choppy waters and people stuck in border detention camps waiting for a new future gives us a reality check. The violent empires may have faded but their legacies linger on.
If Christ is King, he takes on that role in order to subvert dominant understandings of power and its exercise. Christ turns power and kingship upside down and uses them for new and much more creative and life-giving purposes.
The God we meet in Amos and John demands righteousness, solidarity and justice as the foundations of faithful living. Neutrality scuppers justice. When we drift away from God, our fellow human beings and the life-giving environment, prophetic truth-telling tempered with an imagination for a different world becomes a necessity.
Transfiguration means to be challenged and governed by a different set of norms, in opposition to this world and the powers that disfigure the image of God in each one of us. Theologically, transfiguration is an eschatological vision that transforms and revolutionises our present.