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The Power of Heaven Let Loose on Earth

June 20, 2009

In a sermon at the Eucharist and Baptism in Durham Cathedral on the feast of Pentecost entitled “The Power of Heaven Let Loose on Earth” Bishop N. T. Wright made reference to Psalm 2:

In Psalm 2, to which the early Christians looked back as they pondered the mystery of who Jesus really was, the nations and their rulers make a great rage and fuss, but ‘he who dwells in heaven laughs; the Lord has them in derision.’ Then there comes the enthronement of God’s anointed: ‘Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.’ ‘You are my son’, says God to his anointed and enthroned king, ‘this day I have begotten you; ask of me and I will give you the nations as your inheritance; the uttermost parts of the earth as your possession. You will break them with a rod of iron, and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.’ And the Psalm ends with a call to the rulers of the earth to be wise, to submit to the rule of God’s anointed king. We cannot ponder this too deeply. The one who is enthroned in heaven is the one who is ruling over the earth, to whom all earthly rulers must give account. That is the meaning of the Ascension, and with it the meaning, also, of Pentecost.

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