random | jeremyduncan.ca

By: Jeremyduncan  09-12-2011

Esther and the deadly Dilemma was a five part series that I taught at unedited spirituality in the fall of 2011. I’m hoping over the next few months to convert my notes into something readable.

Part 1: Context and Characters

An important part of the journey towards maturity is the push to make sure our faith is defined by more than just the obvious answers. There’s a beauty in exploring the popular texts in the scriptural story but then are moments where we reach through the surface into the depths of the text to discover something new, something forgotten, and perhaps something surprisingly transformational.

This is often my experience when I reach back into the Old Testament narrative books and it’s exactly what we encounter in the story of Esther. A somewhat small story about an isolated period of Jewish history that, if we allow, has significant implications for our faith journey today.

All of the books in the Bible are fascinating in their own way. Their content and their context and what they’re trying to say about God and humanity is worth exploring. Esther, however, is an odd text. For one, it’s a book in our Bible that doesn’t mention or reference God… at all, which is unexpected.

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theology | jeremyduncan.ca | Page 2

Sometimes we call it vicarious atonement or propitiation or judicial theory or penal substitution, but all of these subtle variants are a form of a metaphor that paralleled the development of the modern legal system. We have transgressed the standard that God has set for membership in his social order much the same way a criminal transgresses the social order that society has set for itself.


collected thoughts | jeremyduncan.ca | Page 3

I’d like to try to tell two stories with nothing in common to make a single point. Sorry for the lack of proper sentence structure, I don’t talk in proper English. This is an unedited manuscript for a message I gave last month a Westside.


random | jeremyduncan.ca | Page 2

There are a couple store apps available but honestly the official mobile portal through safari is great enough. Still on the list for now but if the CDN pay plan comes in this is off the list. In honor of the release of Skype for iPhone here is my list of essential apps. App StoreEvernote: simply awesome and the new 2.0 is so much faster. Obviously only useful if you have a wordpress powered site. Jailbroken AppsPDANet: 3G tethered modem.


church | jeremyduncan.ca

In the past people gave up meat from Monday to Saturday during Lent and the shared a family meal after church on Sunday as a mini celebration rehearsal for the coming Resurrection Sunday. Father, our source of life,I reach out with joy to grasp Your hand;let me walk more readily in Your ways.Guide me in Your gentle mercy,for left to myself I cannot do Your Will.


collected thoughts | jeremyduncan.ca | Page 2

Intro There are a number of traditions in the family of the Christian Church and each of those have placed a different emphasis on parts of the life of Jesus. The protestant tradition which is where Westside has come out of, by contrast, has primarily focused their attention around the death of Jesus. Hopefully it can help shape a different frame on Jesus life and death than the sometimes myopic view presented in the evangelical church.


collected thoughts | jeremyduncan.ca

I would collectively define this collection of expressions as the evolved ability to represent and classify experiences with symbols and to act on those experiences creatively and imaginatively in the communal life of people groups. While some would choose to forgo the unease and side with either Christ or culture even Niebuhr’s analysis, while acknowledging the possibility, would seem to push us towards a more nuanced understanding of the pair.