Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Nude

There's a song on Radiohead's "In Rainbows" that explores the naked vulnerability between a man and a woman--a theme as old as Adam and Eve. And, it got me to thinking: in the resurrection, we won't be wearing any clothes. Think about it: if sin and death brought shame and suffering to humanity (and clothes are desperate attempts to hide our shame), then when we share in the complete honor of Christ, all shame is erased. We'll have nothing to hide. No more pretentious fashion statements to hide our insecurities. No more beauty contests (we are lovely in Him). No more impoverished rags. No more "look at me." No more "us versus them." We will be dressed in his glory and that will be enough for eternity. We will be naked and not ashamed. In fact, after having "put on" Christ's resurrection body, we will look back at this time and consider it odd that we would have considered nakedness shameful. Heaven come to earth will be one, big nudist colony.

This thought had never occurred to me until I heard Radiohead. Who would have thought their music would be such an inspiring source of theological contemplation? I do have big ideas; they are going to happen.

Can't wait to be nude on the last day, naked before the One who clothed me in his brilliance.

6 comments:

JDTapp said...

It strikes me at how this occurs after the resurrection and not after we die and are with the Lord, as Revelation records people in heaven wearing robes. Does that mean the "old heaven" is not sinless perfection? Is it just me, or do Christians often confuse what life will be like after we die with what it's like after the final resurrection?

Rodney Reeves said...

JD,

You've hit upon a topic that NT Wright exposed as a weakness in American eschatology ("Surprised by Hope"). That is, most Americans think the final reward is escape from our body, going to heaven (a spiritual place) forever--a gnostic idea. But, that is not biblical.

In other words, heaven as it is now is not the end (so, yes, it is incomplete). Christ's work will not be consummated until sin and death have been vanquished via the resurrection (much like Paul talks about in 1 Cor. 15).

Heaven is a half-way house, holding us till the last day, when heaven crashes into earth.

jesnicole said...

"when heaven crashes into earth".......

Love it.

Haydn Campmier said...

Yeah that will be awesome that we can stand unashamed, naked and confident in front of God someday! And that our bodies will be in glory and not nasty and old like it will be when we die.

William Bell said...

You know Christian hope is suppose to encourage imitations and anticipations in the present of God's future reign in history. Perhaps though, if nakedness really is a feature of Christian eschatology, it would be one without empirical indications in the present...

Rodney Reeves said...

Willi,

You're right. Nakedness has a pejorative sense. After I wrote the post, I wish I had used a different word to describe our current condition as already-but-not-yet resurrected people. But, what else could I say? Perhaps "nude" would be the best way to put it; I certainly didn't want to use "natural" or "bare."

So, being vulnerable was my best stab at describing our current "Christ-like" condition.