A number of people have asked me about the recent Poets Prophets Preachers conference. This is the first of four brief summaries and reflections of the conference highlights. These will be posts that are relevant for everyone – even those who do not consider themselves Poets Prophets or Preachers.

The Story We are Telling – Rob Bell

Where we begin and end the story has dramatic implications on how we think, live and speak.

The full biblical story begins in Genesis 1 & 2, and it ends in Revelation 21 & 22. The story begins with God creating a world that was very good.
The story ends with God returning the world to being very good.

The time in between (where we live) is marked by two things:
The unraveling of the goodness of the world (Genesis 3).
The beginning of the new creation/ healing of the world (Resurrection of Jesus)

While Genesis 3 is crucial to the story, it must be put in context of the larger story. It is neither the beginning nor the end of the story.

If we begin in Genesis 3, we begin with what is wrong.

If we begin in Genesis 1 & 2, we begin with what was intended.

If we begin in Genesis 3, the point is the removal of sin.

If we begin in Genesis 1 & 2, the point is the restoration of shalom.

If we begin in Genesis 3, we emphasize what we are not.

If we begin in Genesis 1 & 2, we emphasize what we are to be.

If we begin in Genesis 3, the goal is disembodied evacuation.

If we begin in Genesis 1 & 2, the goal is participatory physicality.

How we frame the story is crucial.
Beginning the story at Genesis 1 & 2, and ending the story with Revelation 21 & 22 clearly better captures the storyline of the Bible than the Genesis 3 thru Revelation 20 version of the story.
It is also better captures the life that we live in this world, the world that is so crucial to the story.

What implications do you see?

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