The Holiness of Housebreaking

A few weeks ago, I posted a piece that I submitted to the Babylon Bee, which they never published. It looks as though my second attempt was a failure too, so I thought that I would share it with you all!

Dear the Bee,

I was heartened to read your recently published article criticizing Christians who oppose felony home invasion. It is concerning to see the housebreaking community so cruelly maligned and marginalized in the name of Christianity.

I was, however, surprised that the author of the article in question doesn’t seem to have wrestled with the possibility that Jesus himself was a larcenist. On a number of occasions in the gospels, Jesus compares his coming to that of a thief in the night. Conservative Christians conveniently ignore this.

Indeed, I would suggest that it is high time that we recover the importance of such imagery for the divine, emphasizing its importance over against more exclusionary traditional metaphors. Perhaps then burglars may finally begin to recognize that they too are worth celebrating, as their identity is shared and validated by God in Godself.

I also believe that we need to push towards sacramental blessings for acts of housebreaking. Indeed, in our society, where the church is widely perceived as a house closed to outsiders, can we call ourselves faithful Christians if we are not prepared to express such radical welcome? Are we a place where the Christ who comes in the form of a thief would be affirmed or would he feel judged and ostracized?

Please consider the prayers and alternative liturgies that I have attached as a first step in this crucial direction.

About Alastair Roberts

Alastair Roberts (PhD, Durham University) writes in the areas of biblical theology and ethics, but frequently trespasses beyond these bounds. He participates in the weekly Mere Fidelity podcast, blogs at Alastair’s Adversaria, and tweets at @zugzwanged.
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2 Responses to The Holiness of Housebreaking

  1. Al, if you write a similar post about the holiness of wife abuse, we will publish it at A Cry For Justice. We don’t have the same size audience as the Babylon Bee, but oh well…

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