William P. Brown is an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church (USA) and the Marcellus McPheeters Professor of Old Testament at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Ga. He is the author of several books on biblical interpretation and theology, including Sacred Sense and The Seven Pillars of Creation: The Bible, Science, and the Ecology of Wonder. As a member of the Center of Theological Inquiry, Brown worked collaboratively with scientists, philosophers, and ethicists, exploring the "societal implications of astrobiology."
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The ‘Body of Christ,’ for the Body of the Earth
The resurrected Jesus is recognized not by his words but by his wounds, the wounds of his crucifixion. Herein lies a great irony. The crucifixion has left its indelible marks upon the resurrected one, such that the risen Jesus is recognizable only through them. On the one hand, resurrection has not erased his wounds. On the other hand, Jesus’ wounds no longer define him as a dead criminal, as determined by the state. Jesus doesn’t wince at Thomas’s touch. Even as his wounds remain, Jesus’ body is made whole and new.