Last, we left the Scandal of Particularity with the Israelites. God chose them as the path through which to reveal himself and his plans. In the Scandal though, God does not end it there. In his revelation of himself to the descendants of Abraham (Israelites) he revealed that a Messiah was going to come and be king, and that the whole world would be subject to this king. Here enters Jesus.
Jesus the Christ isn't just the next step in the Scandal, Jesus is the scandal. Jesus is everything the Israelites were intended to be as God's chosen people. He is the Messiah and the Son of God. So, if he is everything the Israelites were supposed to be, then he is where God reveals himself and his plan. Take a second to think about that and how it fits into the scandal of particularity. Jesus is the revelation of God to the world.
Jesus is the fulcrum of the Scandal of Particularity.
Part of why this is called a Scandal is that if Jesus is the Son of God, that is, the revelation of God and his will, then other people or gods are not. Meaning that Jesus is not one of many ways to get to, or to know God, rather he is the only way. Jesus speaks of himself in that very manner when he calls himself the Way, the Truth, and the Light.
This brings up another facet of the Scandal of Particularity. That is, that there is no passiveness when it comes to understanding Jesus. What I mean by this is the popular notion today that many people like Jesus, but not his church or followers. However, when more questions are asked about the Jesus such people like, it is not the Jesus of history and scripture but rather one they created, a revolutionary nice guy who was misunderstood. The problem with this view is that one has to go to great lengths to create such a Jesus out of imagination. Such a figure just isn't there in history, what is there is a figure that forces the classic "Messiah or Lunatic" argument. Meaning Jesus is who he claims to be, the only Way, or he is a dangerous nut, but never just a "nice guy who was misunderstood."
According to the Scandal, all of history leads up to Jesus and his life. It makes a permanent visible line in the sand, one of exclusiveness and inclusiveness. With Jesus, the Scandal became more evidently Particular, as it were. What are the ramifications for us today then?
If you find this interesting or have strong opinions either way, come on down to Cafe Hollander on Downer Ave tonight, 7pmish. There will be some open discussion time and probably a game or two. Ask for the reservation under 'Marc', we are normally upstairs.