According to some Christian outlooks we were made for another world. Perhaps, rather, we were made for this world to recreate, reclaim, redeem, and renew unto God's future aspiration by the power of His Spirit. - R.E. Slater
Our eschatological ethos is to love. To stand with those who are oppressed. To stand against those who are oppressing. It is that simple. Love is our only calling and Christian Hope. - R.E. Slater
Secularization theory has been massively falsified. We don't live in an age of secularity. We live in an age of explosive, pervasive religiosity... an age of religious pluralism. - Peter L. Berger
Exploring the edge of life and faith in a post-everything world. - Todd Littleton
I don't need another reason to believe, your love is all around for me to see. – anon
Thou art our need; and in giving us more of thyself thou givest us all. - Khalil Gibran, Prayer XXIII
Be careful what you pretend to be. You become what you pretend to be. - Kurt Vonnegut
Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are often shaped and adjusted by our social goals. - Jim Forest
People, even more than things, need to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone. – anon
Certainly God's love has made fools of us all. - R.E. Slater
An apocalyptic Christian faith doesn't wait for Jesus to come, but for Jesus to become in our midst. - R.E. Slater
Christian belief in God begins with the cross and resurrection of Jesus, not with rational apologetics. - Eberhard Jüngel, Jürgen Moltmann
Our knowledge of God is through the 'I-Thou' encounter, not in finding God at the end of a syllogism or argument. There is a grave danger in any Christian treatment of God as an object. The God of Jesus Christ and Scripture is irreducibly subject and never made as an object, a force, a power, or a principle that can be manipulated. - Emil Brunner
Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh means "I will be that who I have yet to become." - God (Ex 3.14)
Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. - Thomas Merton
The church is God's world-changing social experiment of bringing unlikes and differents to the Eucharist/Communion table to share life with one another as a new kind of family. When this happens we show to the world what love, justice, peace, reconciliation, and life together is designed by God to be. The church is God's show-and-tell for the world to see how God wants us to live as a blended, global, polypluralistic family united with one will, by one Lord, and baptized by one Spirit. – anon
The cross that is planted at the heart of the history of the world cannot be uprooted. - Jacques Ellul
The Unity in whose loving presence the universe unfolds is inside each person as a call to welcome the stranger, protect animals and the earth, respect the dignity of each person, think new thoughts, and help bring about ecological civilizations. - John Cobb & Farhan A. Shah
If you board the wrong train it is of no use running along the corridors of the train in the other direction. - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
God's justice is restorative rather than punitive; His discipline is merciful rather than punishing; His power is made perfect in weakness; and His grace is sufficient for all. – anon
Our little [biblical] systems have their day; they have their day and cease to be. They are but broken lights of Thee, and Thou, O God art more than they. - Alfred Lord Tennyson
We can’t control God; God is uncontrollable. God can’t control us; God’s love is uncontrolling! - Thomas Jay Oord
Life in perspective but always in process... as we are relational beings in process to one another so life events are in process in relation to each event... as God is to Self, is to world, is to us... like Father, like sons and daughters, like events... life in process yet always in perspective. - R.E. Slater

Friday, February 21, 2014

Faith v. Reason: A Preliminary Discussion


Embracing Creation–A Question of Faith
Guest Post by Bev Mitchell
Beyond, well beyond, intelligent design
By Dr. BK Mitchell on February 2, 2014
Format: Paperback
This is an important book. Amos Yong is Dean of the School of Divinity and J. Rodman Williams Professor of Theology at Regent University. His well respected body of work spans several fields and always explores the essential role of the Holy Spirit in those fields. In "The Spirit of Creation" Yong develops his long and growing interest in ways that Christian theology and science (particularly biology) might fruitfully converse. His strong sense that we should expect and develop a complementary relationship between theology and the life sciences, rather than a convergence à la Intelligent Design theory, is as insightful as it is urgent.
This book is theology, philosophy, logic and speculative spiritual theology all presented as a coherent whole. Emergence, holism, non-reductionistic are three good descriptors of the book's ethos. It is a very challenging read and will raise eyebrows and stir the mind and the spirit. It is Pentecostal, or as the author prefers to say, it seeks to give a (much needed) pneumatological assist to our thinking in this important area of intellectual and spiritual interaction. Because of the wide ranging nature of the topics covered in "Spirit of Creation" any thorough critique would run on far too long. You will have to trust that it all holds together - the main ideas emerge in wholeness. I will only summarize my view on the central take-home message of the book.
 /ˈnɒmə nl iz əm/ Show Spelled [nom-uh-nl-iz-uh m] Show IPA
(in medieval philosophy) the doctrine that general or abstract words do not stand for objectively existing entities and that universals are no more than names assigned to them. Compare conceptualism, realism ( def 5a ) .
  • The essential dynamic nature of creation is front and centre; the ever-present nominalism is addressed head on and not allowed;
  • a balance between God and creatures as co-creators is established, yet the apartness of God is required;
  • the idea of non-monolithic causality is important and should be helpful;
  • and not only is the Spirit present throughout, he never stops working. 
Adoption of a model like this would solve many current problems.
Four scholars' opinions of this and a related work can be found in Canadian Journal of Pentecostal-Charismatic Christianity 3 (2012). This book is much bigger than pentecostalism (though that itself is rather large) and it addresses issues that extend across the entire spectrum of evangelical thought and beyond. If you are not pentecostally inclined, that is no reason to avoid this book - in fact, it may well be a major reason to dive in. 

"Holding to epistemologies that are safe and comforting do not expand very well"


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