Tag Archives: Christianity

Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted

Stricken, smitten, and afflicted, see him dying on the tree!
‘Tis the Christ by man rejected; yes, my soul, ’tis he, ’tis he!
‘Tis the long-expected Prophet, David’s son, yet David’s Lord;
by his Son God now has spoken: ’tis the true and faithful Word.

Tell me, ye who hear him groaning, was there ever grief like his?
Friends thro’ fear his cause disowning, foes insulting his distress;
many hands were raised to wound him, none would interpose to save;
but the deepest stroke that pierced him was the stroke that Justice gave.

Ye who think of sin but lightly nor suppose the evil great
here may view its nature rightly, here its guilt may estimate.
Mark the sacrifice appointed, see who bears the awful load;
’tis the Word, the Lord’s Anointed, Son of Man and Son of God.

Here we have a firm foundation, here the refuge of the lost;
Christ’s the Rock of our salvation, his the name of which we boast.
Lamb of God, for sinners wounded, sacrifice to cancel guilt!
None shall ever be confounded who on him their hope have built.

words – “Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted” by Thomas Kelly (1804)
image – “The Raising of the Cross” by Rembrandt (c 1633)

Semester wind-down

I know all I’ve posted about lately is school. But it has been sort of prominent in my mind. ;) Not as prominent as it should have been. I completely gave into my procrastination tendencies this week, writing my final paper for Metaphysical Poetry last night from 7pm-midnight, then collapsing–until I woke up at 4am with inspiration for the final few paragraphs. So yeah, I got up and wrote them from 4-6am, then went back to sleep until 8. Then my plan was to edit it, but I…didn’t. I looked over it, fixed a few words here and there, then turned it in. Whatever. I don’t know if the fact that I don’t care is good because it’s keeping me from getting overly stressed about something that honestly isn’t life and death to me, or if it’s bad, and a sign that I will always be sloppy about everything (which I tend to be now). Oh well. I don’t care. See? Huh.

Hee. I just marked the Metaphysical Poetry paper completed on my Remember the Milk todo list, and it was the last thing on the list, and now it says “You have no incomplete tasks! Woohoo!” Which is exactly how I feel about it. :)

Anyway. Everything is now finished except for a final tomorrow morning, which I do need to study for, because it’s going to be half an essay requiring references to at least twelve different works that we read throughout the semester, and we have to discuss how they all related to some theme (man-woman relationship, man-God relationship, etc.). I think I’m going to do heroism, but it’s a lot easier to find in the Old English/Anglo-Saxon works than in the 16th century stuff, so I’m going to have to make up some stuff.

The GOOD NEWS. I got my Howards End paper back today, and I got a 95%! From one of the hardest graders in the department, or so I hear! And he really thinks I have a chance at publishing it. That’s exciting. Certainly nothing else I wrote this semester is close to publishable, not even the one for Bibliography and Research that’s supposed to be publishable. By the time that one was due this past Tuesday, I was already beyond caring. My goal for next semester: manage my ability to care better, so I get the really important stuff done while I still care about it.

Question for seminary-type people. Or other historically-minded people. I did the Metaphysical poetry paper on the relationship of George Herbert to his religious environment, and I found enough good stuff for a ten-page paper, but it got me interested in Calvin’s church community. Do you have any suggestions for not-too-difficult-to-read books about the Genevan church, and also the Zwinglian one? After skimming three or four books about the Reformation in general, I sensed that some of them are, uh, a little biased, so I wasn’t sure how far to trust some of them beyond the basic historical facts. A lot of the English poetry in the early seventeenth century seems to be as critical of Geneva as of Rome, though from what I can tell, Anglicans like Herbert were largely Calvinistic in theology, so I think it’s more of a critique of Geneva’s liturgical style and system of church government (which I couldn’t quite ascertain from any of the books I had…was it basically Presbyterian? Or congregational?). I guess I just need some good basic Reformation histories that aren’t too biased.

Christianity and Literature Conference

So, I’m in Abilene for the Christianity and Literature Conference. There are four or so grad students from Baylor up here (three of us staying together), plus three or four faculty members giving presentations, so it’s been really great to be able to get to know some of them a bit better. We’ve been in conference sessions all day today, so our brains are starting to explode a little bit…we came back to the hotel right after the last plenary lecture (Baylor’s Dr. David Jeffrey, who did a magnificent talk on metanarrative, specifically the differences between the big archetypal Western narrative and the archetypical Eastern/Chinese narrative), skipping the post-conference jazz concert due to exhaustion. It’s been great…so many things to think about, both in terms of the papers I’ve heard and in terms of the whole conference experience. But I’m sort of glad tomorrow is just a half-day. Who knew that sitting around listening to people talk for twelve hours straight would be so tiring?

Dr. Jeffrey actually goes to Redeemer as well, but I hadn’t had a chance to meet him before. He’s teaching Literary Theory next semester, and I was already planning to take it (lots of good recommendations from other students), but now I’m totally psyched for it. I’m not huge on theory, but he’s so articulate and kind that I think it’ll be really good. Plus, there was a roundtable discussion today on postmodern theory that had me totally wired. I decided I like theory when other people who know about it are talking and I can just listen and absorb, I just dislike having to decipher it myself.