Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Thomas Sermon #5: The 'Black Swan Event’

Read the TEXT, and the previous posts.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb is, I'm told, a New York trader and a specialist in uncertainty. (there's some irony in that, btw?) His claim is that the things with the highest impact in our lives come from the most unpredictable events. Smart idea, huh? Things you couldn’t foresee. Events like September 11, which is especially raw for New Yorkers. Last Tuesday, his book is released on Amazon: The title: "The Black Swan: The impact of the highly improbable"

Fascinating idea, right? Apparently he talks in the book about the 'improbable', and it's relationship to high impact events. These improbable events he calls 'black swans'... that no amount of white swans could have prepared us for.

To borrow Taleb's idea, the Scripture testifies to the fact that Jesus' Resurrection is the ultimate in ‘Black Swan Event’: No one expected that he would rise from the dead.

But he did.

And the case is then made from Scripture that this is the HIGHEST of all impact events, with the Apostolic message of forgiveness (V19-23) reaching even to you who read this Blog, if you believe. For it means, that Shalom is possible as forgiveness and grace is preached and lived.

So, for the cynic, there can be a way forward: There can be blessing if you 'believe without seeing'.

And I think that is attractive. Seriously attractive.

Are you a cynic, or a skeptic? Well, one has gone before you! And Thomas believed. And he was blessed. And that story was written that you may believe that Jesus is Messiah, and that by believing you may have life in his name. The very point John makes: (v30-31):
Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
Here endeth the sermon...

Comments, questions, complaints?

1 comment:

Jim said...

Thanks J. I found those posts quite insightful, especially the last one. I want to read that book now.

It's like a movie. Endings which we don't see coming, end up being films we really enjoy. (6th Sense, Fight Club, Usual Suspects).

But the clues are there all along for us to pick up.

Just like Jesus.

The ending has to be improbable, not impossible.