Wow. Sometimes really good things do come from going to school. I just came across this guy who states with perfect clarity a muddled thought that floats around in my head. To me this is where things of the head meet things of the heart:
In my 12/13 journal entry I was not meaning to suggest that absolutes don't exist. I believe that they do - however, we never encounter absolutes in an absolute way. And our personal knowledge (see Polanyi) of the Absolute can never be communicated absolutely.
As such, absolutes don't exist inherently in any text, (Scripture, my life, nature, etc) - including what I write here. The words that you read point to a reality (if you will) that is beyond the screen, beyond the page. There is no "magical hermeneutical system" that will unlock the capital "T" Truth that is hidden within the page.
Any encounter of the Absolute is a relational encounter and cannot be reduced to any propositional or narrative form. By nature the Absolute must be occasional and unique to the time/place/relationship/person/community.
This is why following Christ is a relational/communal/faith journey. The Holy Spirit guides all toward Truth - Truth as a person. To hold to the Absolute is to look beyond self and beyond all systems of belief to Christ alone.
To hold externals as absolutes may in fact signal a weakness of faith and a desire to conquer our doubts and fears within systems of our own making.
The issue is not can I know what truth is, as much as the issue is, can I/we trust God to make Himself known and to guide us to Himself.
Update: Better add this:
Moral relativism is the highest from of morality that exists for Christians. If you are
Christ's (whatever that means) and God's Spirit is leading you to deny self, love God and
others, than morality as a legal system is obsolete.
We choose law, because we're afraid to embrace the freedom (relativism) that Christ
invites us to. Religion has always been about law, and will always be about law. Christ
fulfilled but we don't trust Him enough to live the reality of freedom that he longs to give.
It seems to me that we cannot change the way we read Scripture and keep the same
definition of sin. A bipolar Christianity would seem to be inevitable. (Dec.12, 2003)
Update: Yeah. ok, I am really liking this guy.
...Back to the point there is no doubt that how we understand the "fall" or what I might call the "emergence of humanity," has a direct impact on our understanding of the Gospel. Many of the NT passages so appropriately cited stress God's hatred for sin while imagining a life of followership. Is this not what we do with our kids all the time. When they are young, we give them clear rules, (maybe even 10 of them, call them commandments if you will), this are basic, they are written on heart of every child, be still we speak them. And Still our kids break them. As they grow, our emphasis on commands shift and we focus more and more on the heart, we stress love of God and love of fellow persons, and our discipline changes. The goal is never obedience though their obedience reveals their love. The goal is reciprocity. Aiding our children to develop into humans who can deny self in favor of loving others, including us.
The sin of our children is not our enemy. Sin is an unwitting participant in the training of children who can love. (Oct.3,2003)