Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The following paragraph is one that I like and, if I understand him right, I think is true.
He considers those propositions that occasionally come up regarding our faith where our reason, conscience, concept of God and experience deny. In Jeremy Taylor’s illustrious way, he considers those issues and warns us that faith, if it violates all I mentioned, is a blind faith and not of substance, and cannot glorify God if our conscience condemns it.

“Whatsoever is against right reason, that no faith can oblige us to believe…..

If therefore any society of men calls upon us to believe in our religion what is false in our experience, to affirm that to be done which we know is impossible to ever be done, to wink hard that we may see the better…. They make religion so to be seated in the will that our understanding will be useless and can never minister to it. But as he that shuts the eye hard and with violence curls the eyelid, forces a fantastic fire from the crystalline humor, and espies a light that never shines, and sees thousands of little fires that never burn: so is he that blinds the eye of his reason and pretends to see by an eye of faith. He makes little images of notion and some atoms dance before him, but he is not guided by the light nor instructed by the proposition, but sees like a man in a sleep….. He that speaks against his own reason speaks against his own conscience, and therefore it is certain no man serves God with a good conscience that serves Him against his reason.”

Photo by Joost Van Buul


Mel said...

Hmmm... Oh, goody! (...rubbing hands together with enthusiasm!)

This post is chewy food (like pan caramel) for prolonged thought and meditation. I don't know if I agree with it yet, but I'm going to print it out, read it a few more times, carry it around with me--and say more about it tomorrow or sometime soon. Thanks, Fred! :)

Matt said...

very interesting. no wonder you get kicked out of so many churches! Just kidding.

fcb4 said...

That is so, so good.

Dad, send me and Christian this post and your hell study. Christian has been doing his own study on the subject which I found out yesterday. He has ended up right where you are at too. Facinating.

What's interesting is his use of the book of Enoch in addition to his bible, history, reason and own heart in the study.

Bluebirdy said...

Fred, I am so glad to have you as a new friend. Your words are much appreciated and like a gift.Your profile is fascinating, and I am amazed to see how many people from all different countries visit your blog! I hope you will be blessed many times over for how you have blessed me.

FCB said...

Hi Mel,
I like the way you approach things, although your illustration of caramel made me hungry :)
I so often come to a quick conclusion on a subject, only to come back and re-read all that was said and find out my knee jerk reaction was unfounded. You're becoming quite the scholar!
God bless,

Hi Matt,
I am learning, a little at a time, to keep my mouth shut, at least until the tar and feathers have been removed :)
Love Dad

Now Eric,
are you allowing that son of yours to come to his own conclusions????
Why, there's no telling what may happen!!!!!!!!!!!

I'll get it right off to you, I am eager to hear what his study has uncovered, with as sharp a mind as he has and such an open heart, God will not have to do major surgery just to get him to seek.
Love Dad

Hi Shiela,
What a pleasant surprise to see your picture pop up. We have at least two things in common, our love for Christ, and we have both been blessed by each other in a very short time, sounds like the makings of good things to come!
Joseph would be the third thing we have in common, and Mel makes the fourth. I was touched how Joseph's heart went out to you, I very much like that about him, God is good through him.
So I'll introduce the responders to this post, Mel, lives in Washington near my son Eric (FCB4) and Mel was in Eric's youth program when he was a youth pastor, if I have that right? She may have just been an attender there, she is in her early thirties. Eric pioneered a church in the urban part of Spokane a few years ago and I hope you visit both there blogs.
Matt is my son who lives with his wonderful wife and two children in Thailand. He has a business on the coast about an hour from Phuket, lucky dog!!!!!!!!

Glad to have you as a new friend, God bless you and your mom,

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hi Fred :)

Very interesting post but very complicated words. It's a hard nut to swallow.

In simple words, I believe, the nutshell of this post is that our belief in Christ should be whole hearted, complete,firm and solid without any doubt what so ever. If a person is not fully convinced about his faith in God, then whatever he says will be half hearted and false.

You can correct me if my understanding of this post is wrong :)

Best wishes :)

Mel said...

Hi All,

I was not in Pastor Eric's youth group, but my daughter Lisa was, and she and her husband attend his church now. He was an associate pastor at our church for a while, and my life was forever changed by the messages he spoke.

Okay, I've been thinking about this post for a day or so now, and I think I'm ready to post a somewhat thoughtful (I hope) response to it.

There are some beliefs that are spoken of by people in the church today that make absolutely no sense to me. Beliefs and statements like:

God wants me to be happy.

God's will is always perfect healing.

It's God's will for absolutely every human being that has ever or will ever exist to be saved.

My eyes and my reason passionately refute all of these blanket statements. And yet, I used to pretend to believe them. I wanted to believe them. I wanted other people to see me believing them and hear words of agreement coming out of my mouth.

Not that God doesn't want us to be happy--of course He does! But I believe that He wants to be our greatest source of happiness and fulfillment, and that if we are happy in our idol worship, He will do whatever needs to be done for those Who are His to be freed from those chains. Many times that's a painful process and there is no happiness anywhere in sight while it's going. But He loves us enough to sacrifice our momentary happiness to replace it with an incorruptible eternal joy, and that's a trade we'd be fools not to make.

With much love in Christ to all of you,

FCB said...

Hi Joseph,
I had to smile when you said this post is a hard nut to swallow.
I agree, I had to read it over many times before I formed an opinion or understood what in the world a "Crystalline Humor" was and what it meant. As I understand it, he is using the illustration of our eyes to point out that not all of what we see is real, eg we can have our eyes closed and push on them and see lights, something I have thought about from time to time, where does that light come from?
Anyway, his conclusion, the way I read it, is the same as Mel's. We can hear or read something presented as "GOD", but everything in us contradicts the proposition, and to humbly submitt without studying it out or finding the source of our concern, is to violate our conscience. I think he is pointing out that all the spiritual awakenings in history, or within us, come from listening to that voice within, even if it goes against the beliefs of our time. Something like that.
Good mental gymnastics, but I think it is an important point.
God bless,

Hi Mel,
I appreciate you taking the time to meditate on this, and I think it paid off, or at least I came to the same conclusion. Which means we are both mislead or we have some idea of his thoughts.
His antiquated language makes it a challenge, to understate it.
Thanks Mel,

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Many, many thanks Fred and Mel. The explanations are a real eye opener for me.

Best wishes :)

Anonymous said...

What is my image doing here? You are not allowed to use my image without permission. Please remove this image from this site. Regards Joost van Buul