Thursday, April 26, 2012

Wisdom from the Dead

For Christmas, I received Mere Christianity on audio book.  While my wife often reminds me (and I often disagree) that this doesn't count as reading a book, I have found it to be an edifying way to redeem the time of my commute to and from here and there.  While I have not yet made it too far in this particular book, I have listened to the preface twice now.  This I have done with good reason.

I believe that I am still recovering from some of my recent Internet conversations and research ventures.  My experiences engaging in thoughts on the Concerned Nazarenes and Fundamentalism in general was an energy-consuming endeavor.  Looking back, I realized that much of that time and energy was spent without the reaping (or even the planting) of any fruit.  Several of my good, Christian friends have also told me that in other places, they wish I would have spent more time arguing my point and my theological stance.

A second venture that I have recently engaged in is reading on homosexuality and Christianity.  More precisely, homosexuality and biblical theology.  This interested was particularly sparked by two separate events.  First, a close friend of mine recently came out as a homosexual and is very publicly announcing his perspectives of homosexuality and Christianity.  Second, I am now ministering in Lawrence, Kansas to a university that is well known for its LGBT community.  These efforts to wrap my mind around this issue have been laborious.  I often found myself sitting on my couch feeling the weight of the entire conversation pressing me into my once-comfortable cushions. 

C.S. Lewis has affirmed for me the position to which I have been journey in these past few months. 

"In the first place, the questions which divide Christians from one another often involve points of high Theology or even of ecclesiastical history, which ought never to be treated except by real experts. I should have been out of my depth in such waters: more in need of help myself than able to help others. And secondly, I think we must admit that the discussion of these disputed points has no tendency at all to bring an outsider into the Christian fold. So long as we write and talk about them we are much more likely to deter him from entering any Christian communion than to draw him into our own. Our divisions should never be discussed except in the presence of those who have already come to believe that there is one God and that Jesus Christ is His only Son. Finally, I got the impression that far more, and more talented, authors were already engaged in such controversial matters than in the defence of what Baxter calls ‘mere’ Christianity. That part of the line where I thought I could serve best was also the part that seemed to be thinnest. And to it I naturally went."

I must confess to you that my ego continues to burn for the opportunity to prove my point on some issues of dispute.  However, I have come to the absolute conclusion that such controversial topics must be discussed within the Church and not in the public eye. 

Realizing that to say such a thing seems backwards in a technologically-driven society, I admit that there may be occasions that require ideas to be posted.  I am committing to be very careful with such posts.

It is easy to have a popular blog that posts controversial, negative, or against-the-grain posts.  I am not sure if that's what I want to have though.  That's not to say that I no longer have opinions on such matters, it's just that those opinions will be shared via open-source technology with much greater discretion. 

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