Posted by: rogermitchell | February 12, 2010

thanks for the comments on the beastly kingdom

Thanks to one and all for the ongoing comments on the beastly kingdom. They are all helpful and take the ideas forward and well worth a look if you haven’t already. My reply to Cheryl’s points covers my gratitude and response to them all. Let’s keep this going for a bit if you will.



  1. Hi Roger
    Just read your latest Daywatch post…I much prefer the term ‘beastly empire’ than ‘beastly kingdom’ – I couldn’t get my head around a beastly kingdom but the word ’empire’ does it for me!

    • Thanks Jane, I think I feel the same way, but to be strictly accurate the two words are pretty much the same in meaning. It seems that Jesus took up the word Kingdom in order to empty it out and reinfuse it with its opposite, the loving giving kenotic economy of God.

  2. Hi Rog,

    Wasn’t sure where to put this as it relates to time… You may have seen this but on today’s BBC website an article mentions the New Economics Foundation who have published a paper on working tiime recommending a 21hr working week an talk about how production and consumption are so dominant. The link is

    There was also a quote:
    “It is time to break the power of the old industrial clock, take back our lives and work for a sustainable future.”


    • Thanks Peter for the very interesting quote! I’m still a little uneasy about the take word in this context. Maybe give back our lives…

  3. Ha ha!
    I like beastly, although for me, it’s more Narnia than Star Wars……………
    “Oh Edmund, you are being perfectly Beastly!”
    I like the thinking that has led to this though, and beastly certainly speaks of violence and dominance, fear and control.
    When Jesus used Kingdom/Empire in the way He did, He was making a very obvious and political point. Does the word Kingdom make very much sense in our current context? It seems like something that is of a bygone era and therefore loses relevance. Empire still holds a lot of substance……..I’m wondering if system is better or ‘way’.
    Beastly system vs peace system
    Beastly way vs peace way…………..
    even these don’t seem satisfactory, but has anyone else anything on this?

    • I like your points Andy, but given that we Brits live in the United Kingdom, kingdom can’t be quite relegated to a by-gone era!

      • But perhaps we might wish it were. In fact, not to stray too far off subject, isn’t the reality of the UK that it exists in the tension of having to dispose of the vestiges of its imperial past and not quite doing so? If we are to engage in reframing of language to help explain concepts, is this not a case in point for kingdom being a word caught hopelessly between meanings? In fact, it has almost certainly lost all of the radical irony and subversive intent that Jesus knowingly gave it when referring to the kingdom of God. The UK and the sense of ‘kingdomness’ *is* a quaint anachronism both to most of the global world and to amassing Britons. I personally find it contemporarily clumsy and diluted for description of either the positive or negative side in the epic clash of cultures that Jesus illuminates. I am intrigued as to what might convey the Jesus manifesto more clearly today.

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