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Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Faith in the Future

In the introduction to Miracle Drug on Saturday night, Bono said, "We have faith in the future." He was referring to the progress that doctors and scientists make in providing needed drugs and treatments for ill people. He suggested that God inspires them in their work. Beyond just medicine though, U2's faith in the future is a common theme in their music.

This "faith in the future" seems itself to be a God-inspired view of the world in which the kingdom values of the Bible are lived out here on earth. U2 sings about love and peace (or else) because those are values of the kingdom. They sing of justice and equality because those are values of the kingdom. They sing of ending poverty and extending grace and living in a world where the streets have no name because those are values of the kingdom. They have faith in the future.

And then I look at me. I certainly believe in the kingdom and cherish the biblical values of the kingdom, but my dispensational theology argues against having any faith in the future. Aren't things just going to go from bad to worse until Jesus finally pulls the plug on this experiment? Is this kind of eschatological pessimism biblical and faith-inspired? I am undecided.

Bono feels to me like a prophet - saying what needs to be said in a way that makes me increasingly uncomfortable and unsure of my theological systems. But before I dismiss him as some liberal or one-world activist, I need to remember that my carefully devised charts of the kingdom are more out of tune and out of place with the prophetic song of the kingdom found in the Bible than his songs are.

Maybe I need more faith in the future.

5 comments:

A said...

Holy cow, that was extremely well worded.

Thanks.

Ciona said...

I'm glad I stumbled upon your thoughts in my web search about U2 and their faith. I will continue to check here and to learn more about Grenz.

But I am intrigued by U2's faith in the future and think that is the kind of faith that Jesus instilled in us. Yes, we have this future eschatology of the kingdom being realized when Jesus comes again. But I have to believe that Jesus had hope of it coming even before. If not, why would he teach the disciples to pray for God's kingdom to come on earth as it is in heaven. Surely Christ had faith in the future, as well.

Robyn said...

What you said was really well worded, but I still have to have faith or should I say hope in the future. The more believers out there, the more people that hear the gospel, then the quicker Jesus Christ can come, and I for one can't wait.
I'm also not sure that the world will get better since the Satan is "The God of this world", says that in the Bible somewhere, but I also believe that God puts His hedge of protection around His children.
I do believe that U2 has a handle on this grace thing and that the 3 confessed believers will be in Heaven, and I will finally get to meet them. I also believe that Adam will come along,how can he not playing and hearing their songs everyday.
U2 could be a Christian rock band, but choose the other route to reach the millions they have. I believe there are a lot more spritualy minded people out ther because of U2s' music.
God Bless,
Robyn

Robyn said...

What you said was really well worded, but I still have to have faith or should I say hope in the future. The more believers out there, the more people that hear the gospel, then the quicker Jesus Christ can come, and I for one can't wait.
I'm also not sure that the world will get better since the Satan is "The God of this world", says that in the Bible somewhere, but I also believe that God puts His hedge of protection around His children.
I do believe that U2 has a handle on this grace thing and that the 3 confessed believers will be in Heaven, and I will finally get to meet them. I also believe that Adam will come along,how can he not playing and hearing their songs everyday.
U2 could be a Christian rock band, but choose the other route to reach the millions they have. I believe there are a lot more spritualy minded people out ther because of U2s' music.
God Bless,
Robyn

Mike Todd said...

From one Stan Grenz fan to another, well said.

And as one who has let go of my dispensational views, I have great faith in the future. I used to think it was all down hill until Jesus returns. Now I think its the other way around. The former implies helplessness, the latter... responsibility.

Peace.