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- Please discuss Warren Carter’s analysis of the Beatitudes, honing in on specific verses that you find interesting and considering them in light of his arguments. Why does Warren Carter argue that it is important to read them in the context of resistance to empire? What does he see as the overarching message of these texts? What do you find most significant in his discussion, and why?
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Excerpts from Warren Carter, “Power and Identities” In Preaching the Sermon on the Mount, ed. David Fleer and Dave Bland Matthew’s gospel provides ways for followers of Jesus, crucified by the empire, to negotiate Roman power. . . The gospel does not hesitate, for example, to name the empire as utterly contrary to God’s purposes. . . It is fundamentally opposed to God’s life-giving and just purposes. The Roman Empire is not a blessing for all the nations of the earth, God’s promise to Abraham. It benefits the elite and exploits and tyrannizes the rest. This is not God’s vision of a just society. . . [Eventually, Matthew’s Gospel asserts that the Empire will be brought to judgment, which will be enacted finally when Jesus returns.] But in the meantime, until this judgment takes place, . . . how are disciples of Jesus, one crucified by the
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