N.T. Wright on Emotionalism

From his chapter on A World Reborn: Revelation in Following Jesus: Biblical Reflections on Discipleship:

We have allowed our proper dislike of emotionalism to deceive us into trying to ignore our emotions. But if Good Friday and Easter don’t stir our emotions, then the tyrant has indeed enslaved us. We have become like a garden paved over with stone slabs. Many people live like that; God help us, many of us even choose it, rather than face the terror and the joy of our own hearts, let alone of Calvary and Easter. But Easter is all about the garden in which stone slabs are made to look silly. Jesus weeps before Lazarus’ tomb; and then he calls him out into life. Jesus weeps again in Gethsemane; then he goes off to confront the tyrant and defeat him. Peter weeps bitterly after he has denied Jesus; and the risen Jesus meets him and loves him and commissions him. Mary weeps before Jesus’ tomb; and Jesus meets her, alive. John weeps because the plan of salvation is sealed up, and the world cannot be rescued from tyranny; and his tears turn to worship because of the Lamb who was slain. We can try paving the garden with stone if we like; but come springtime, come Easter, there will be grass pushing its way through.

To experience the full range of human emotions is to recognize the one whose image we are made in and who has experienced the same things himself.

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