Friday, 18 September 2009

Ezekiel and the 'celtic' church

I've never been persuaded that the celtic church really existed in the form presented to us by the celtic church gurus. There clearly were Christians in Ireland and Scotland from the early 5th Century, but as with all others they would have been Western Christians under the authority of Rome.

I've been reading Chris Wright's book on Ezekiel, which is highly commended. Commenting on 8:14-15:
14 Then he [The LORD] brought me [Ezekiel] to the entrance to the north gate of the house of the LORD, and I saw women sitting there, mourning for Tammuz. 15 He said to me, "Do you see this, son of man? You will see things that are even more detestable than this."
Wright offers the following comment:
Christians are rightly recovering a creation balance in our worship and spirituality. Celtic worship has been enjoying something of a revival, even if not all of it would be immediately recognized by Patrick or Columba. However, there is a danger that what passes as allegedly 'Celtic' actually draws on pre-Christian Celtic paganism (which is very much in vogue with New Age adherents), rather than the vigorous and trinitarian Celtic Christianity which emerged after the remarkable conversion of Ireland. It is vital that our appreciation of creation within our worship is kept anchored to the biblical affirmations about God himself, and not allowed to drift over into a false kind of personalizing of nature. If creation is exalted to excessive levels in our theology or worship, we may subtly marginalize the person and character of the Creator and come close to ascribing divine power and properties to natural forces and elements. 'The earth is the LORD's, and everything in it' (Ps 24:2), and our worship, like the worship of all created things, must be directed to the Lord himself alone. The paradox is that if we worshp the living God rightly as Creator, then we shall care for creation as well, as he commanded; but if we worship the creation (in any of its manifestations, or even by unbridled consumerism), we quickly forget the Creator. (pages 106-107)

I am grateful to Chris for this timely reminder and hope that sharing it with you will be an encouragement to worship our God who alone Created everything there is.

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