The Inverted

   Christian

                    Painting of Peter Crucified Upside-Down

                                          By Caravaggio 

                                 “The Inverted Christian” ©

 

Jesus said, “For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it”

                                  (Luke 9:24; KJV).

 

 

                                                Chapter 1

                                Why “The Inverted Christian”?

                                                An Introduction

This is the inaugural article for “The Inverted Christian” section of our web

 

page. It is my desire to post an article weekly (or at least bi-weekly). But, as

 

we all know, life-happens. So, my prayer is, “God Willing” (James 4:15)—to

 

use this once a week timeframe as a goal of opportunity, not as a god to be

 

worshipped. Before we begin, I would like to have you know a couple of

 

things: First, I would like to thank you for stopping by to read our sundry

 

thoughts, ideas, and opinions that are fleshed-out here. Many a time; ideas

 

appear more radical when written-out than when only abstract thoughts. My

 

subjective deliberations often betray me when objectively committed to black

 

ink on white paper. I do not claim to have a lock on truth. And I do invite your

 

responses. For “iron sharpens iron” (Proverbs 27:17, KJV), “so a man

 

sharpens the countenance of his friend.” But I would sincerely request, if you

 

give feedback; that you write, speak, and act by “The Golden Rule.” With this

 

request please read again Matthew 7:12, “Therefore, all things whatsoever ye

 

would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law

 

and the prophets.” 

            Secondly, I would have you know a bit more about me. For an in-depth

 

look please refer to the home page of “The Inverted Christian”

 

(https://www.drrogerdduke.com/). It gives all my ministerial, experiential, and

 

educational credentials. I am an orthodox Christian. (I do not mean by that I

 

am a communicant of an Eastern Orthodox Church.) However, I do stand in

 

the long line of Christian orthodoxy. Confessional beliefs held are as follows

 

(but are limited to): the Apostles Creed, the Nicene Creed, the Chalcedonian

 

Creed, the Five Solas of the Reformation, the Particular View of Christ’s

 

Atonement (T-U-L-I-P), the Second (Baptist) London Confession of 1689, and

 

the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy. These are posted in a

 

predominant place on the web page for your consideration.

                 A Rationale for “The Inverted Christian” Web Page

            On the homepage is a painting of Peter being crucified upside-down.

 

This event is not found in the Biblical narrative. However, Followers-of-Christ

 

possess ample evidence from testimony, history, and Christian tradition to

 

believe it occurred. (See John Oaks article:

 

https://evidenceforchristianity.org/what-is-the-evidence-that-peter-was-

 

crucified-upside-down-in-rome/). Caravaggio captures Peter in a visual way

 

that becomes visceral when studied intently. The abstract idea of Christian

 

discipleship, and all that means, has been dancing around in my head for

 

some time. Dietrich Bonhoeffer asserted it clearly; “When Christ calls a . . .

 

[person], he bids him come and die.” He too, like Peter, was martyred for his

 

commitment to Christ.

 

Some explanation is in order: Peter did not feel himself worthy to be Crucified

 

like his Master. So, he requested to be crucified upside-down. Hence, the idea

 

for “The Inverted Christian.” For him, it was his last full measure of devotion. It

 

completed a lifelong call to follow Christ as disciple then Apostle. The truth be

told, Peter’s personal experience is rather unique. But our call to follow the

 

Lord Christ is general, it becomes personal, like Peter’s, when we take up our

 

own individual Cross. All who heed Christ’s invitation are called to “come and

 

die.” This Gospel dynamic is set before everyone who would consider

 

becoming a Follower-of-Christ. It is declared most clearly in the New

 

Testament Gospel of Luke. Jesus asserts; “For whosoever will save his life

 

shall lose it; but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save

 

it” (Luke 9:24; KJV). Hence, this Bible verse and image of Peter are the basis

 

of the articles to be posted. Peter’s crucifixion imagined and seen becomes a

 

literal representation of the metaphor for what it means to be a Follower-of-

 

Christ. Arguably, this is the major dynamic of Discipleship or “follow-ship.” It is

 

a topsy-turvy understanding (or inverted understanding) of the Christian life

 

and worldview; when compared to the life and worldview of this present

 

culture where we find ourselves. The Christian is to “seek those things which

 

are above” and live like “strangers and pilgrims on the earth.” From the Follow-

 

of-Christ’s perspective—counter to this world’s understanding—everything is

 

to be done from an “other worldly” way of seeing things. The focus of “The

 

Inverted Christian” is to provide an alternative mindset of this present world

 

and the world to come!

Duke

Consulting

Group

© 2020 by Roger Duke

THE UNITED STATES