Participating with Jesus in Completing the Works of God in an Unfinished, Evolving Universe: Towards an Anticipatory Reading of the Gospel according to John
In the main, Christian devotional life, worship, biblical interpretation and theology are still based on presuppositions of a static cosmos. Churches focus on longing for the perfection lost in the Garden of Eden and are weighed down by working towards salvation in an other-worldly heaven. Biblical interpretation is called to an anticipatory approach (metaphysics of the future) that can accommodate in one wide vision both biblical hope and the contemporary science of an unfinished, evolving universe. This paper, which seeks a convergence of cosmology and theological anthropology, is a step towards developing an anticipatory reading of the Gospel according to John that is grounded in Abrahamic hope and sees all events in nature and history as a journey towards the living God who is up ahead calling all creation into being to complete the Works of God. I suggest that the tradition of the human person as a microcosm interconnects anthropology and cosmology, thereby, offering a way of moving through the ever-expanding concentric circles of our personal story, our family story, our Christian story, our human story, our Earth story and our cosmic story.
Kathleen P. Rushton RSM is an independent biblical interpreter who was a lecturer at Christchurch campus of Te Kupenga – Catholic Theological College and is a Teaching Fellow at Trinity Methodist College, Auckland. Her research focuses on anticipatory readings of John’s Gospel which aim to accommodate both biblical hope and science’s unfinished universe.