Sunday, March 30, 2008

Challenges facing Christadelphians (1)


Sometime in the early 1990s I was asked to speak at a combined study day in Sydney on the subject “Christadelphians - Where are We Headed?” Some of the material used on that occasion subsequently appeared in an Australian magazine Christadelphian Forum in 1992 - 1993 as a series of articles under the same title. Since then those articles have been reproduced and re-published in various formats, sometimes updated or modified. It's probably time for a complete revision. In the meantime, I have been thinking recently about the main issues which are currently challenging the Christadelphian community and wanted to write a brief series of messages about these challenges as I perceive them.

Christadelphians have always stressed the importance of getting doctrine right. A common lecture title used to be "Sincerity without Truth cannot save" (and perhaps still is in some circles), and Christadelphian teaching has focused on defining these 'saving truths'. Many Christadelphians would argue that sometimes this emphasis on establishing "the Truth to be believed" is pushed a little too far. For example, ecclesias (and the Christadelphian community in general) have divided over such matters as whether the dead will be raised mortal or immortal, whether the Kingdom will be over the whole earth or only the land of Israel, whether sinlessness is theoretically possible, whether Jesus in the wilderness was tempted by an internal or external tempter, whether the judgment will be at Mt Sinai or Jerusalem, and whether the bread for communion should be leavened or unleavened. All these things have seemed very important at the time to the people involved, yet subsequent generations and others not involved in the immediate conflict often see these questions as trifling differences. They might be interesting to discuss, but certainly not important enough to divide over, or to exclude anyone from fellowship.

A question we should ask which helps to put such issues into some kind of perspective is: what practical difference does it make? Some doctrines are of the type that they affect our whole worldview, or the theological framework within which we think and reason. There is probably no doubt in the mind of any Christadelphian that whether the Kingdom of God will be
on earth after the return of Christ or will be enjoyed in heaven immediately after death affects the whole way one thinks about the after-life and the future, and it's therefore important to have consistent teaching on this 'foundation' doctrine. Similarly, whether we think of God as 'one person' or as 'three persons' affects the way we understand God, Jesus Christ and the way of salvation.

With both these doctrines it's relatively easy to understand why they are regarded as 'fundamental' and how they might affect the way we do things. But it's much harder to see what practical difference it would make if we believed the dead are raised mortal or immortal, or whether the Kingdom will be in Israel (with the rest of the earth being 'territories of the kingdom') or over the whole earth.

Perhaps most Christadelphians these days would agree that such theological hair-splitting should not divide the community. I am fairly confident that a sizable majority within the Christadelphian brotherhood wouldn't waste their time arguing such points, let alone dividing over them.

Yet I feel that generations of debating doctrinal fine points for well over a century has left a legacy amongst Christadelphians of thinking in doctrinal and theoretical terms rather than practical ones. Ask any Christadelphian to write a summary of their faith and they will almost certainly begin with a propositional truth: usually some kind of statement about the nature of God, or the inspiration of the Bible. Rarely would someone begin with a statement about what kind of people we should be, or how we should live. I'm not suggesting that it's wrong to begin with a 'propositional truth' - however, I think there is a tendency to think ONLY in these terms and to separate these 'truths' from the practical impact they have on our lives.

When discussing the Trinity for example I have often asked Christadelphians what practical difference it makes whether someone is a trinitarian or a unitarian. There is usually first a stunned silence, followed by "I don't know" or further questions about why it matters if there is a practical impact or not. What I'm really asking by the question is this: if it makes absolutely no difference to the way we live whether we are trinitarian or unitarian, where do trinitarians and unitarians stand in relation to each other at the Judgment? Imagine two people - one a trinitarian and the other a Christadelphian - who both attend church/meetings regularly, both read their Bibles daily, both pray 'without ceasing', both are generous and charitable, both are honest and ethical, both live according to the commandments, and by their lifestyles they are almost indistinguishable. The only difference between them is that one is trinitarian and the other is a Christadelphian. At the Judgment, do you personally think it is likely that God will accept one and reject the other simply because of this doctrinal difference? I guess Christadelphians would be divided about how they answer that. Let's take it a step further then and imagine that both these people are Christadelphians and the only difference between them is that one believes the dead are raised mortal and the other believes they are raised immortal. Do you think God will accept one and reject the other simply because of how they have understood this matter?

I am NOT suggesting that doctrine doesn't matter, and that what we believe about anything is unimportant. However, I AM suggesting that important doctrines should affect our conduct, and that if some thing has no practical affect on the way we live then it's either unimportant or we have failed to understand the practical implications and put them into effect.

There is a good example of this which has recently received quite a bit of media attention. N.T. (Tom) Wright, the Bishop of Durham, has recently written a book titled "Surprised by Hope" which challenges how we
think about heaven, hell, purgatory and eternal life. Christadelphians would agree with him on many of his conclusions about heaven-going and the resurrection. Wright critiques many of the accepted views of heaven, especially the assumption of the continuance of the soul after death in a sort of blissful non-bodily existence. "This is simply not Christian teaching", Wright insists. The New Testament's clear witness is to the resurrection of the body, not the migration of the soul, and then only when Jesus returns in judgment and glory. (There was an interesting interview with Wright about this on abc news. Also see my message about an article in TIME magazine).

But according to Wright Christian teaching of life after death should really be an emphasis on "life after life-after-death". He argues that what we believe about life-after-death should affect the way we live now. Wright wants Christians to focus on how their final destination will affect their lives in the here and now. In other words, if we believe in the restoration of the earth in a future Kingdom of God, then we should live in the light of that belief. He said in the interview: "because I believe in God's Kingdom of justice and peace this gives me the energy and the focus to work for the kingdom of God in the present".

Now that is challenging!

In an earlier message I quoted Catholic theologian Albert Nolan who was writing on the same subject and I suggested that the really great part of the quote, in my opinion, is that Nolan has picked up that Jesus did not come simply to say "the Kingdom of God is coming", but rather "the Kingdom of God is coming for the poor, the oppressed, the rejected, the mistreated, the disenfranchised, and those who don't measure-up to the standards imposed by the religious". We need to live in the light of that knowledge and work today for justice and equity for the poor, the oppressed, the mistreated and those for whom the Kingdom is coming.

Jesus told more than 100 parables or sayings about the Kingdom. Most of these relate to our behaviour, our character, and how we are to live in the world where we find ourselves. Jesus’ main emphasis is on the inner character that underlies the outward conduct. Conduct is an outward sign of character. "The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks" (Luke 6:45). "Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit" (Matthew 7:17). Jesus also told several stories about how our lives now are preparing us for something to come. In the parable of the talents the master said to his good servants "'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'" (Matthew 25:23). In the parable of the sheep and goats the King says to those on his right: "'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'" (Matthew 25:34-36).

The emphasis of these stories, and others like them, is that we are being prepared for a greater work in the future and our Master is giving us tasks to do today that will build our characters and equip us for the work to be done in the future. The stories which end with some sort of picture of judgment (like these two above) are not so much about being rewarded for work well done, as much as they are about entering in to the work for which we are now being fully prepared.

We need to focus on the characteristics needed for 'Kingdom-people' who will "live and reign" with Him. What traits will He be looking for when choosing people to work with Him in the restoration of all things? I imagine that the restoration of our wounded world will need people who are nurturers, healers, builders, and encouragers more than it will need theologians or experts in doctrinal fine points. The tasks we are called to do today are those things that will prepare us for the greater work to be done in the future.

As a community of people who believe in the coming Kingdom of God Christadelphians need to focus more on the practical impact of the Gospel, and live today in the light of that Kingdom - not just believing that the Kingdom will come, but in nurturing, healing and encouraging those for whom it is coming and to model the Kingdom-values of justice and equity for all.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

More on "weak men" being "bullied off the platform"

I have received a communication from the person who wrote the original message on a Christadelphian forum which I quoted earlier about men being "bullied off the platform". I will wait for this poll to conclude before I share any of his new comments about this.

In the meantime, I am interested in the people who voted "yes" or "maybe" in this poll and would like to learn more about their experiences. I have added a new poll to the sidebar on the right. This poll is ONLY for those people who voted "yes" or "maybe".

I'd also be keen to hear from them directly with details of their story. If you are one of these people would you please email me IN CONFIDENCE and let me know how you were "bullied off the platform". I will not pass on any of these comments unless I have your permission to do so.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Why Jesus suffered

At this time of the year our minds often go the question "Why did Jesus have to die? Was there no other way for God to save mankind?"

The death of Christ is often explained either as a debt being paid - that is, His death paid the price of our sin - or as one innocent person dying in the place of other guilty people who have been condemned to die (that is, as a substitute). These are two different metaphors, but they often get confused and used together in explaining the 'atonement', or how Christ's death brings about our salvation. It's one thing to speak about a 'debt' being forgiven, but to then mix this up with a capital punishment for a criminal offense would be to confuse the metaphors.

If we stick to the language of debts being paid then Jesus must have paid the debt to someone - if indeed He paid a debt. This is quite different from someone dying as a substitute in place of another for a crime.

Paul used a variety of metaphors from the marketplace, the slave trade, the law courts and the Temple, because no one analogy is adequate or complete in itself. No one metaphor was adequate for him, and no metaphor should be pushed too far.

However, Jesus rarely, perhaps never, spoke of His death as an 'atonement'. The Gospels record only one brief saying which possibly alludes to His death as an atonement - the 'ransom saying' of Mark 10:45 (parallel Matt 20:28), which may, or may not, be a reference to His death. Jesus' references during the last supper to His blood being shed to seal the new covenant is the language of covenants, not atonement. So it's actually doubtful whether Jesus ever referred to His own death as an atonement.

On the other hand, Jesus spoke frequently of God's forgiveness, His abundant generosity, and His graciousness. There is nothing in any of His parables, stories or sayings which suggests that a price of any kind had to be paid to secure God's forgiveness. The stories which refer to debts being forgiven all emphasise the undeserved kindness shown by the one forgiving the debt. If any debt was owed by Adam or his descendants because of his sin or theirs, then the debt was owed to God. If Jesus death was to pay a debt then the debt must have been paid to God, and that would put God in the position of demanding the death of His own Son in order to satisfy a debt to Himself. The other alternative would be Anselm's satisfaction theory which had the debt being paid to the devil, which I personally think is absurd.

If Jesus died as a substitute, taking our place for the crimes we have committed, then He suffered the punishment for our sins which was due. There is no need for forgiveness then, because the sentence has been carried out. We are free, not because we have been forgiven, but because someone else took our place.

As I see it, the only way we can understand forgiveness is to see it as a gracious act of God in NOT demanding payment or punishment for our sins. If we use the metaphor of a debt, then the debt is paid and is not forgiven. If we use the language of capital punishment then the sentence has been carried out and the guilty party has a substitute who dies in their place, but the crime is not forgiven. Neither of these analogies explain what actually happened: God chose to forgive our sins even though there was absolutely nothing we could do to merit or deserve His forgiveness, and even though it would be impossible for us to find a substitute who could suffer the punishment which our sins deserved.

As I see it, Jesus' death was a demonstration of how far God's love would go in order to save us, not what God demands in order to be satisfied. Several Scriptures point us in this direction:
Romans 5:8
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Galatians 2:20
The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Ephesians 5:2
Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

1 John 3:16
This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.

1 John 4:9
This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.

1 John 4:10
This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
The death of Christ is primarily a demonstration of the love of God. It was not an act to appease an offended deity. It was not a mechanistic or legalistic sacrifice to satisfy the requirements of any religious law. It was not a demonstration of what "the flesh" deserved. It was an act of love.

William Barclay puts it very beautifully in The Plain Man Looks at the Apostles' Creed:
"But why the death of Christ? If Jesus had stopped before the cross, it would have meant that there was some point beyond which the love of God would not go, some limit to his love. But in Jesus God says: 'You may disobey me; you may grieve me; you may be disloyal to me; you may misunderstand me; you may batter me and bruise me and scourge me; you may treat me with savage injustice; you may kill me on a cross; I will never stop loving you.' This means that the life and death of Jesus are the demonstration and the proof of the limitless, the undefeatable, unchangeable, unalterable, infinite love of God." (My emphasis).
This is the most beautiful summary I have ever read of the motivation beyond the cross.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

The meaning of the last supper

Today is Maundy Thursday, the anniversary of when Jesus celebrated the Passover with His disciples the night before His crucifixion.

This message is to share with you some thoughts on the origin and meaning of the "bread and wine" symbolism used at the last supper, especially in the context of first century Judaism.

For some further information on the events of the last supper see my article "The Night He Was Betrayed" which has been reproduced here.

During Jesus' last meal with His disciples He prayed over bread and wine and said “This is my body” and “This is my blood” (Matthew 26:26–28; Mark 14:22–24; Luke 22:19–20). For many Christians, especially Gentile (non-Jewish) believers, that could only mean that Jesus referred to himself: Bread and wine were tokens of Jesus body and blood. To many Christians later in history these words would mean that the bread and wine literally became His body and blood when believers consumed them.

The traditional understanding of the bread and wine, known in many churches as Eucharist, and to Christadelphians as "the emblems", is that Jesus was telling His followers to eat bread and drink wine as if they were his own flesh and blood. The celebration of "Holy Communion" or "breaking bread" was to be a memorial of Jesus' voluntary death as a sacrifice offered for the sins of mankind. The bread and wine were intended to be visible reminders of His body which was nailed to the cross and His blood which was shed there.

But is that plausible within the context of first century Judaism? What Jew would tell another to drink blood, even symbolic blood? The thought of drinking blood, even animal blood, was blasphemous. To imagine drinking human blood and consuming it with human flesh could only make the blasphemy worse. Yet there is no hint in the accounts of the last supper that Jesus' disciples were shocked or even puzzled by this saying.

So what did Jesus mean?

In earlier messages I've emphasised the importance of the meal table in Jesus' teachings. In contrast to the meals of the Pharisees in which only the ritually pure could participate and from which the blind, crippled and diseased were excluded together with the "sinners" (including those with heretical doctrines), Jesus was welcoming and inclusive. He taught "when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind" (Lk 14:12). He ate with "sinners" and refused to wash His hands after being in contact with common people and before eating.

Jesus’ meals were also meant to be a taste of the kingdom to come. The prophets taught that in the kingdom to come God would "share His table" with "all peoples" on his holy mountain (e.g. Isaiah 25:6–8). Jesus shared that hope:

“Many shall come from east and west, and feast with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 8:11; Luke 13:28–29)

Unlike the Pharisees, Jesus’ meals were inclusive. He avoided any exclusive practices that would divide the people of God from one another and accepted all the people of God at His table, including tax agents and other suspicious characters, and even notorious sinners. The meal for him was a sign of the kingdom of God and everyone was to have access to it.

It's important that we see the last supper not only in the context of Jesus teaching about the Kingdom of God, but also in the immediate context. Jesus had just created a furor at the Temple by driving out the animals being sold for sacrifices, and the money-changers. He objected to merchants selling sacrificial animals in the vast outer court of the Temple (and no doubt He objected even further to the fact that the chief priests were making a personal fortune from this trade).

The Gospels record several dramatic moments when Jesus challenged religious practices:

1. His first recorded miracle was to convert water used for ritual purification into wine which was to be drunk in celebration (John 2:1-11. Note especially verse 6).

2. He declared all foods clean (Mark 7:19)

3. By refusing to wash His hands before a meal He declared all people clean. In other words, there was no need to wash away their 'contamination' before He could eat. (Luke 11:37-40; Matt 15:2; Mark 7:1-4).

4. He worked on the Sabbath (John 5:16-18).

5. By driving sacrificial animals from the Temple courts He declared an end to animal sacrifices.

To the priests and the religious authorities this last action was the most radical of them all, and threatened their livelihood.

Soon after this “cleansing” of the Temple, Jesus again celebrated a meal as a foretaste of the kingdom, just as he had before. But he added a new dimension of meaning, related to His actions at the Temple. Jesus said over the wine, “This is my blood,” and over the bread, “This is my flesh”.

In the context of His actions at the Temple, Jesus’ words can have had only one meaning. He cannot have meant, “This is my own body and blood”; that would have been shocking and would have been understood as blasphemous. Jesus’ point was that, as true worship and sacrifice could not be practiced at the Temple it was no longer possible or necessary to perform animal sacrifices. The common elements of a meal were to be the new 'offerings' to God: wine would replace the blood of sacrifice, and bread would replace the flesh of sacrifice. These were His substitutes for the animal sacrifices at the Temple. When he said, “This is my blood, this is my flesh,” he meant that the wine and bread were replacing the blood and flesh of animals being sacrificed at the Temple.

Jesus was in effect saying that by sharing meals in anticipation of the kingdom, He and his followers offered more acceptable worship than what was offered in the Temple. The wine was better blood, the bread better flesh, than Temple sacrifices that were being controlled by the religious authorities to line their own pockets.

No where else does Jesus speak of His own death as an 'atonement'. In sharing bread and wine at the last supper He is not speaking of His own death as a human sacrifice. We should remember too that this was Passover and Paul makes a connection with the timing and speaks of Jesus as "Christ our Passover lamb" (1 Cor 5:7). But the Passover lamb was not offered as an atonement or as a sacrifice for sin. It was not a sin offering. Every part of the lamb was to be consumed in a meal in which everyone was to participate: the whole family together with neighbours. There had to be enough people present to ensure that nothing was left over (Exodus 12:4, 10). This was a festive meal, a celebration of freedom. People often confuse the Passover lamb with the sin offerings and think of "Christ our Passover lamb" as a sacrifice for sins. This has led to further confusion about the meaning of the "body" and "blood" references during the last supper.

For many Christians, including Christadelphians, the primary focus of Communion is on the death of Christ as an atonement for sins. This is especially so in relation to the communion 'cup' as a symbol of shed blood. However, it's important to note that the Passover lamb was not sacrificed as an atonement, and Jesus' reference to the wine as a symbol of blood was to the "blood of the covenant". Sacrifice in confirmation of a covenant was never for atonement.

Jesus is, however, saying that this is a radical change in the way God is to be worshipped. He says of the wine: “This is my blood of the covenant.” (Matthew 26:28; Mark 14:24. Compare Luke 22:20 and 1 Corinthians 11:25, which speaks of “new covenant.”)

When Jesus referred to His blood as 'the blood of the [new] covenant', He was referring to the sacrifice which sealed a covenant. He is undoubtedly linking the blood with which Moses sealed the covenant in Exodus 24:8 and the new covenant of Jeremiah 31:31-34. The words in Jeremiah refer to the community of God's people receiving God's law in their hearts and minds and is contrasted with the exodus from Egypt which was being celebrated at that time in the Passover meal ("It will not be like the covenant I made with their forefathers when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt"). Jesus undoubtedly had Jeremiah's words in mind at this Passover-celebration from Egypt, and Jeremiah revealed that the new covenant will be different to the old, as the new community of the covenant-people will be different from the old community. The emphasis again is on the Kingdom which Jesus is inaugurating.

For Jesus the 'last supper' was the first of a new type of Passover - a remembrance of the deliverance from the bondage of sin and the institution of the new covenant and a new community of covenant-people. The Kingdom of God had come and this meal was a foretaste of the Messianic banquet of which he had spoken so many times.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Weak men being bullied off the platform

I recently read some remarkable comments on a Christadelphian forum which was discussing whether women should wear head coverings in church ("meetings").

At one stage the discussion turned to include the broader issue of whether women should be allowed to speak in church. While some churches would ask the question if women should be in the pulpit, the Christadelphian terminology would be to ask if women should be "on the platform".

Two comments in particular (by the same writer) took me by surprise:
"When you have women actively competing for time on the platform, you're going to end up with conflict. No two ways about it. It's easy to see what happens. Weak men are bullied off the platform, or only permitted to speak when the women permit them to."

"Man bullying by women has become an increasingly popular pastime in the churches, and it's unfortunate that it's creeping into the ecclesia."
I was surprised by this because it's not only rare to find Christadelphian women in teaching positions at all, but to hear that men are being "bullied off the platform" was particularly surprising. The writer was not referring to some hypothetical possibility. He was saying that this "man bullying by women" is something that's actually taking place now.

This led me to consider taking a poll on my blog (the first time I've done this). I've set up a poll in the sidebar to the right and would value your feedback - the more people who respond to this the better it will be.

If you're a Christadelphian man, and you are currently a speaker (or have ever been one) please let me know if you have ever been "bullied off the platform" by a woman. In other words, have you ever been pressured into giving up your place on the speaking list so that a woman can speak or teach in your place?

This poll will probably close in about two weeks.

Monday, March 17, 2008

People in glass houses

I read a message today on a Christadelphian forum which appeared to be gloating over the fact that Sydney's Hillsong church and their Mercy Ministries project received some 'bad press' in today's Melbourne Age newspaper and the Sydney Morning Herald.

I read the article in the Sydney Morning Herald over my breakfast and noticed several holes in the story. It was very poor journalism in my opinion. Parts of the media are out to portray Christianity (in any form) in a very bad light, so I personally wouldn't be influenced by anything they have to say.

However, it struck me that the comment posted by a Christadelphian on a forum later in the day was just as little bit hypocritical. The writer said:
"People sometimes ask me 'But why is correct doctrine important?'. This is one of the most telling demonstrations as to why. Remember, this isn't just about Mercy Ministries, it's about Hillsong who helps support them and sends vulnerable people to them. False beliefs result in destructive practices."
I say this comment was 'hypocritical' because I know that the writer is aware that just a few months ago these same newspapers were publishing stories about Christadelphians in a similar way. In reporting on the collapse of a company whose founders and directors were Christadelphians the newspapers made a link between the the questionable business practices of some Christadelphians and Christadelphians' questionable prophetical interpretations. They were saying something along the lines of Christadelphians' false beliefs resulting in destructive business practices.

One article about these Christadelphians "ripping people off" was titled "Investors suffer again in case of bad religion" (The Age 30/05/2007). The newspapers suggested that Christadelphianism was "bad religion" and implied that it is a cult-like religion which preys on the vulnerable and robs them of their savings by spurious means.

The journalist may well have said "False beliefs result in destructive practices".

Well, the journalist may have been wrong when he made the connection between the bad business practices of some Christadelphians and the doctrines of their denomination; but you'd think that just a few months later when the same newspapers have a go at another denomination that Christadelphians would have a little bit of humility and remember what the press was saying about them not so long ago.

I replied to the messages on the Christadelphian forum with a post very similar to what I have written here. Almost immediately it was childishly marked by an administrator as 'irrelevant' in an attempt to conceal it. It's another bit of irony that not only are some Christadelphians incredibly hypocritical, but that they really hate having this pointed out to them and will do whatever they can to cover up their own faults while hurling stones at easy targets.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

The Creed of Jesus

Restoration Fellowship Australia will be holding their 2008 National conference in Brisbane July 18-20, on the theme "The Creed of Jesus".

Keynote speakers include:

Professor Sir Anthony Buzzard, author of numerous books including "Jesus Was Not a Trinitarian". He is an outstanding theologian and academic - educated at Oxford University and Bethany Theological Seminary, he holds master's degrees in theology and modern languages. Retiring after 24 years on the staff of Atlanta Bible College, Anthony continues to write, teach and travel, fulfilling a life-long desire to make the best of Bible scholarship available to the wider churchgoing public.

Greg Deuble - author of "They Never Told Me THIS in Church!"

Other speakers are:

Frank Selch
Paul Herring
Peter Barfoot
Mark Scull
Cliff York
Stephen Cook

A registration form and further details can be downloaded here.

This should be an excellent conference and is open to anyone interested in exploring the Bible's teaching on the oneness of God and the Gospel of the Kingdom. Further details of the conference programme, including speakers' topics, will be available soon.