Saturday, May 29, 2010

Real M'n'C - VIII

The second book in line on FishHawk Droppings is [The Minister & The Crackerhead], and it is a fictitious account of an encounter between a more devoutly religious person (The Minister) and myself (The Crackerhead), based upon real events.  This series will be just like it—only these encounters will be real.  Granted, some of the text will have been changed in an effort to protect both the innocent and the guilty, but none of that will change anything about what was being conveyed.  No, none of this is meant to cast aspersions towards anyone, nor to make myself good.  In fact, be assured that I have been made all too painfully aware of the fact that most will not get the point of any of this.  For only those who have been allowed and enabled to understand can, but just how many who can will want to?  Therefore, if you have a question or an observation, please speak up—even if you sincerely believe that I may very well be one of Satan’s worst.
The Minister: Anyone who claims to know all the answers doesn’t really know very much. But the person who loves God is the one whom God recognizes. [1 Corinthians 8:2-3 NLT]
What is clear is that there are many opinions, even among devote Christians, about how the Bible should be interpreted.  It is also clear that human beings can never fully understand the things of God, but that we can look to the Holy Spirit for guidance.  In the Bible, as Jesus was nearing the end of His ministry on earth, He explained this to His disciples: "However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth." [John 16:13 NKJV] It is comforting to realize that certain things will always be a mystery.
The Crackerhead: I don't understand why it would be comforting to you to think that certain things will always be a mystery.  Could you explain?
The Minister: If I could understand all the mysteries of God and the universe, it would mean that I am as wise as the God of the universe.  The fact that I cannot understand the mysteries of God relieves me of the pressure of trying to understand things that are beyond understanding.  How can anyone understand the mystery of the Trinity or that God knows the end from the beginning?
"I am God, and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done." [Isaiah 46:9-10]
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." [John 1:1]
"But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory." [1 Corinthians 2:7]
The Crackerhead: Does not that last verse from 1st Corinthians, along with the complete passage of [1 Corinthians 2:6-16], make it clear that we can understand the mysteries of our Heavenly Father in accordance to His will?  That is, unless you are willing to conclude that the Apostle Paul surely did not know what he was talking about, of course.
In all fairness, I can sympathize with your position.  For my wife and I had a pretty good "discussion" about ignorance being bliss not so long after we got married.  For I thought that harboring such a position was really pathetic, but since what has been personally revealed to me has felt more like a curse than a blessing [Ecclesiastes 1:18], I have softened my attitude somewhat.
Woe is me.  For the thing that causes me the most pain is knowing that most just plain do not want to know--let alone understand.
Now, would you be truly satisfied in your marriage if you knew that your husband could not care less about knowing and understanding everything that he could about you?  Be assured that our Heavenly Father does care, but since it all depends upon what He wants to accomplish in and through you that determines when and to what extent, He will allow and enable you to enter into His absolute Truth, it may not be your fault.
The Minister: I think the key word here is, "in accordance with His will." There are many mysteries of God and of the universe that are unknowable until we meet Jesus "face to face," as it says in 1 Corinthians: For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. [1 Corinthians 13:12]  "Then" refers to our life in eternity, after our body is gone (along with our conscious mind, which is limited by our body, our experience and what God's Spirit reveals to us).
The Crackerhead: If there is really nothing to find—why seek {[Matthew 7:7-12]; [Hebrews 11:6]}?
You included [1 Corinthians 8:2-3] in this post, and this is a passage that has troubled me for quite some time.  For it appears to make it quite clear that if anyone thinks that they know anything that they surely do not know what they should.  Granted, the New Living Translation version that you included changes the “anything” to “everything” (in so many words) which does help, but the passage still seems to discourage us from seeking for more after we know enough to love God.
No, there certainly does not appear to be anything wrong with that at first glance, but upon closer examination, something very sinister comes clearer into focus.  After all, do not Muslims talk about the love of their god, as well as do Hindus with their gods, and even pagans with theirs?
Therefore, is there not a great danger with taking too much for granted?  For there is most definitely a big difference between even Allah and our Heavenly Father—is there not?
Thankfully, our Heavenly Father has finally gotten me to understand that what [1 Corinthians 8:2-3] is meant to really confirm is that anyone who thinks that they have figured anything out for themselves do not know what they should.  For all knowledge and understand comes from our Heavenly Father’s Holy Spirit {[John 16:8-11]; [Colossians 2:2-4]}—not from our own efforts [Philippians 2:12-13], and that His Holy Scriptures are meant to serve as written confirmation of what He Himself wants personally reveal [1 Corinthians 2:12-14].
Yes, I understand that this is something that you do not want to believe, but what have you got without it?  For if the Bible truly is wide open to our own interpretations, surely those who have used it to justify such things as slavery and spousal abuse (not to mention sex with very young children) could not be wrong.
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