Friday, February 27, 2004

Dwight Friesen says:

I was telling a friend that I believe that ALL philosophy, science, theology and even heresy are a gift from God, often serving a prophetic role for humanity. And all is an invitation to know (in the eastern sense) the fullness of God in Christ.

He responded: "This struck me as an interesting thought. I am curious about ALL - is there no bad? Destructive? Death-dealing? that one should avoid? What about the narrow road?"

This is how I responded:

Consider an application of Hegel's dialectic:

We hold a thesis, a belief - and we are introduced to an anti-thesis (something/someone that challenges out worldview). Relational engagement with the antithesis leads us to synthesis (making sense of our old thesis with the antithesis). The synthesis then becomes our new thesis; and repeat.

When some of us encounter an antithesis out of fear we tend to turn inward, digging in our heels and saying "that can't be true," and the crisis of faith is resisted. Others of us say "whatever" and buy the antithesis, there failure to engage is an inward turn that placates self, and relieves the fear of the unknown.

Synthesis is a leap of faith, and every leap of faith must be understood relationally, it is beyond self. And the process of life and faith continue in this dynamic way.

Every "bad" philosophy can have this impact. That is my understanding of how God brings good out of evil.

The narrow road is the faith journey with Christ. It is not theology or beliefs per se. Destructive, death-dealing things to avoid are refusing Christ's incarnational/missional invitation to synthesis.

It is through synthesis that Christ is WITHnessed to the world.

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