New Perspective

So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view... (2 Cor. 5:16) A while back we took the kids to Nauticus to look around and to see the USS Wisconsin. At the time, Nauticus was featuring an exhibit on mapmaking. I was especially intrigued by an ancient map called the T and O map. The T and O map (see picture) is a representation of the world as described by a 7th Century bishop named Isidore of Seville. The map gets its name from the basic layout of the map. It is essentially an O representing the known world divided by a T representing the seas and rivers that divide Europe and Africa from Asia. I find a couple of things very interesting about this map. First, you'll notice that the center is Jerusalem (i.e. The Holy Land), which is not surprising when you remember that it's based on the descriptions of a Catholic Bishop. Second, on this map, north is not up; east is up (and north is to the left, west points downward, etc.). By the way, this may be where we get the idea of "orienting ourselves". Orient is another way of referring to the East. What I love about this map is that it forces me to look at the world in a different way, or (I can't help it) reorient myself. It's just widely accepted now that North is always up and south is always down, etc. So it's strange to think that there's another way of looking at things. (If you really want a head trip, go Google "Reversed Map.") Today's scripture is one that forces us to readjust our perspective when it comes to other people. Paul says that Jesus has changed the way that he looks at people: the value he places on them, the potential he sees in them. All of that is changed by his relationship with Jesus. As Jesus followers we are called to look at others with his perspective. We'll talk more about it today.