12.24.2006

What Matters (2)

Luke 9:27
Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind.

So here is the other side of the coin on that last post. Theology, philosophy, biblical studies, they matter… a lot. How much is “a lot” is the question. One of the things I appreciated about the profs at Fuller is that they would take the “out there” the philosophical, and the like, and make it relevant. They would connect the dots between the seemingly irrelevant, and the deeply personal.

For instance, the question “how many angels can dance on the head of a needle?”, is a question that mattered a great deal to theologians of the middle ages, and is a question often held up as the height of inconsequential theological musing. The actual question behind the one just stated is, “are angels physical beings?”, things we could in some way get our hands on, beings that have a place in our scientific world, or are they purely spiritual, very real dreams if you will, things that though significant and real, are not real.

This may seem like an inconsequential question… until you have a dream in which angels speak to you.

The original question about dancing angels also raises question about the entire physical world and it’s relationship to the spiritual world. How do these things interact? What may seem initially irrelevant becomes paramount for the person terribly in need of a miracle.

This is all just one example of making the philosophical, personal. Taking the irrelevant and bringing it home, illustrating its significance to our larger web of beliefs. Concerning the previous post, what I am finding is that this is best done with the help of the Holy Spirit, and with Jesus Christ at the fore.

1 comment:

David Baxley said...

David as You knows I value the theological and the philosophical. We can spend hours talking about both but I don't know if this is true:
"This may seem like an inconsequential question… until you have a dream in which angels speak to you." or "What may seem initially irrelevant becomes paramount for the person terribly in need of a miracle." I don't know how necessary these questions are to engage in the miracle or the angel. Did Mary or Joseph have to have these deep philosophical questions answered or did they just choose to live by faith and believe. When faith was an issue as with Zachariah, the father of John the Baptist, his tongue was silenced because of his unwillingness to just believe by faith and the word of the angel. And many received many miracles in the New Testament without understanding the physics of it all. They just believed and or received.
My thoughts. We can get deep to understand the deep. But living by faith is living by faith. It is living but not understanding it all. I am ok with that. I run into many that want many philosophical questions answered before they believe and they are frustrated they have not experienced God in many ways that I tell them about. All I can say settle down. Let the spirit answer what he wants and let the faith that God gives you be received by your spirit and walk in what he gives you and be willing to not know it all.