It's been 10 years since the disastrous events of my honeymoon and in that time I've told this story plenty of times, but have never actually sat down to write it out. I thought that since it's now 10 years since my diagnosis I would take the time to write out what happened to my wife and I on what was supposed to be a celebration of our new marriage...
So here goes...
Megan and I were married on the 18th March, 2000 having been together since 1994. Megan was 15 when we started going out at The Salvation Army's Music Camp and I was 17. We've been together ever since. The weather on that mid-March Saturday was a scorching 35 degrees. The men in the bridal party had been out playing golf the day before and we all got sunburnt. So I was feeling a little tired as a result, and so the night before the wedding I had gone to bed early. I remember my sister-in-law, Kate, had made the boys lunch - lasagne... yum! But strangely, I didn't eat it all. Anyone who knows me…
Arguably Gregory of Nyssa's most famous contribution to Christian theology, next to his involvement with the other Cappadocian Fathers in the solidification of the doctrine of the Trinity, is his famous "fish-hook" theory of the atonement. It goes a little something like this...
Humanity is enslaved to sin and the devil by their own free choice to turn away from the Good (i.e. God) and towards evil. God could free humanity arbitrarily, but this would deny his own justice, since it was the free choice of humanity to be enslaved. The slave-master (even if it is the devil) must receive a payment for the slave. What would he accept in exchange for the thing which he held but something... higher and better in the way of ransom. (Gregory of Nyssa, The Great Catechism, NPNF 5, 493).
One of my favourite writers, and one of the greatest Biblical
scholars of our generation, N.T. Wright once wrote the following: I used to tell my students that at
least 20 per cent of what I was telling them was wrong, but I didn’t know which
20 per cent it was: I make many mistakes in life, in relationships and in work,
and I don’t expect to be free of them in my thinking. But whereas in much of
life one’s mistakes are often fairly obvious – the short cut path that ended in
a bed of nettles, the experimental recipe that gave us all queasy stomachs, the
golf shot that landed in the lake – in the life of the mind things are often
not so straightforward. We need other minds on the job, to challenge us, to
come back at us to engage with our arguments and analyses. That is how the
world goes round. Here
is a man who has years of research under his belt, countless books from his own
pen lining bookshelves all throughout the world, a former Oxford professor,
Bishop of Durham and now Professor…