Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Deal-Maker as opposed to Deal-Breaker

Many people think our job is to get our afterlife destination taken care of then tread water till we all get ejected and God comes back and torches this place.

...we ended up with over a thousand people from our church - and thirty sorority sisters. This meant that scores of single young males suddenly felt God prompting them to serve also.

Regarding Job when wishing he had never been born: He requests "May those who curse days curse that day." (He doesn't tell us who 'those who curse days' are; it seems like a limited profession.)

Lines like these are deal-makers for me, these came from a book called God Is Closer Than You Think by John Ortberg. It's full of meaningful spiritual insights AND it keeps making me laugh! It's about the fourth time I've read it, I was going to say I bought it about five years ago but it's publication date is 2005 and it's only 2009 now...

Sunday, March 22, 2009


Lately I've been studying different views on The Atonement. There are so many problems with any view, most notably to me is the problem of human sacrifice. That's condemned in the Bible so why is it considered the best thing that ever happened for us? Something wrong there.

Then there's the issue of imputed guilt, something else scripture condemns - the punishment of an innocent man instead of the guilty. He became sin who knew no sin - is that from scripture or just a song? It is in the Bible but maybe not phrased that way exactly. It doesn't say he took our guilt, it says he became sin.

Then the sacrifice part, he made the sacrifice instead of being sacrificed, it's said. But Isaiah writes "it pleased YHWH to bruise him...", that it was asked of him. That IS different from requiring it.

Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin - that means it wasn't paying a debt; remission is forgiving. If you forgive someone of their debt, that means you don't require its payment.
Still a very confusing subject to me, I think it has way more to do with Yeshua's LIFE. Still, I will celebrate on Passover!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Ineffable God

This is it, this is all I ever wanted to say, I KNEW someone else knew what I mean (and said it way long ago).

Excerpt from John Hick's site - John Hick:

But Dionysius ... makes the divine ineffability central and begins at least to struggle with its implications. In his central work, The Mystical Theology, he says in every way he can think of that God is utterly and totally transcategorial. God is ‘indescribable’, ‘beyond all being and knowledge’. God, the ultimate One, is ‘not soul or mind, nor does it possess imagination, conviction, speech, or understanding. . . It cannot be spoken of and it cannot be grasped by understanding . . It does not live nor is it life. It is not a substance, nor is it eternity or time. It cannot be grasped by the understanding . . It is neither one nor oneness, divinity nor goodness . . It is not sonship or fatherhood . . There is no speaking of it, nor name nor knowledge of it . . It is beyond assertion and denial’.

And Hick's commentary on the quoted passage:

This last statement, that that to which the term ‘God’ refers is beyond assertion and denial is crucial. For (Denys) is not simply doing negative theology, saying that God does not have this or that attribute but, much more radically, that our entire range of attribute-concepts do not apply to God at all, either positively or negatively. To apply them to God in God’s ultimacy is, in modern philosophical terms, a category mistake. To say, for example, that molecules are not stupid, although true, is misleading because it assumes that molecules are the sort of thing of which it makes sense to say that they are either stupid or not stupid. And to say that God is not ‘one nor oneness, divinity nor goodness’, although true would likewise, by itself, be deeply misleading because it assumes that God is the kind of reality to which such qualities could be rightly or wrongly attributed. We have to take on board the much more radical concept of a reality which is what it is, but whose nature lies beyond the scope of our conceptual and linguistic systems. When we speak about such a reality we are not, then, speaking about it as it is in itself, totally beyond the range of our comprehension, but about its impact upon us, the difference that it makes within the realm of human experience, to which our concepts and hence our languages do apply.