Thursday, November 26, 2009

Faith-knowledge

"What sort of knowledge of God’s action in Christ’s death may we have? That a man named Jesus was crucified under Pontius Pilate about AD 30 is common historical knowledge, but Christian beliefs about his divine identity and the significance of his dying cannot be deduced from that fact alone. What further sort of knowledge about the cross, then, may Christians enjoy?

The answer, we may say, is faith-knowledge: by faith we know that God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself. Yes, indeed; but what sort of knowledge is faith-knowledge? It is a kind of knowledge of which God is both giver and content. It is a Spirit-given acquaintance with divine realities, given through acquaintance with God’s word. It is a kind of knowledge which makes the knower say in one and the same breath both ‘whereas I was blind, now I see’ (Jn 9:25) and also ‘now we see as in a mirror, darkly . . . now I know in part’ (1 Cor. 13:12). For it is a unique kind of knowledge which, though real, is not full; it is knowledge of what is discernible within a circle of light against the background of a larger darkness; it is, in short, knowledge of a mystery, the mystery of the living God at work.

‘Mystery’ is used here as it was by Charles Wesley when he wrote:
‘Tis mystery all! The immortal dies!

Who can explore his strange design?
In vain the first-born seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine!"
(J Packer)

Any thoughts?

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pseudo intellectual protesteth too much

"I do find it rather comical anyway that you need to scrabble around for ‘evidence’ (often pretty dodgy evidence) when it suits and then spend ages refuting any empirically tested evidence with all ‘sound and fury’ when it doesn’t suit."

(A comment posted to me on an earlier post)

I have yet to see any empirically tested evidence that a creator God does not exist. Or that Jesus did not resurrect from the dead. Or That after receiving the 'death sentence' from doctors my friend wasn't miraculously healed of cancer IMMEDIATELY after another friend prayed and heard Jesus say that he (Jesus) was going to heal him - even the doctors were quoted in the papers as stating this was a miracle!

If there is empiracally tested evidence for such things, why is that many who I suspect are greater and more intelligent thinkers even then those who post negatively on my blog (if that be possible - given the rudeness and patronsisation of some 'intellectual' protestors) believe otherwise???

Then I get accused of needing evidence to sustain my faith. The implication is that I should take on board: "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. Heb 11:1"

I feel that on this one I just can't win. I am damned if I offer evidence for my faith, and damned if I appear to have blind faith. Well the truth on this matter is that I am sure of what I hope for and certain of what I do not see, but am also greatful that I can enter into the world of appologetics using the evidence that is before me.