Sunday, February 8, 2009

The woods and promises

Pro Veritas, Contra Mundum is a novel blog by "Cambria" shaping-up here. This post has a quote by C. S. Lewis that invoked a memory of an old favorite:

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
~Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening, by Robert Frost

I have to check from the book, when I get home, that I have the words right. And on the topic of promises, a lovely song with a virtuous theme (the video not important).

I know it's probably odd to write a not-so-serious post from a reminder stoked by such as serious post as the one with Lewis's quote on a blog titled "Pro Veritas, Contra Mundum". Isn't that the human mind, however, making connections? In this case being stoked to thoughts of a poem, which stoked memory of a song, two uninspired (by God, that is) works of art that are from the world, (though they their sentiments are arguably noble and unreproachable). :)

So on that note, there's a lot about "culture and Christ", and it's a subject I've had to deal with very personally, think about, etc., because of a Church with which I was involved and its teachings (I'm not now, which should give a hint). What I'll say to start is, Christians should be preaching God's word, Christ's teaching, and not founding entire sermons on cultural artifacts just to seem relevant. That's all, for now...

As to the subject Cambria is touching on, it is one of great interest to people: it is one which men with arduously attempt to philosophize to excuse God for the "criminal" behavior of saving some and not others: not a few people upon insisting that He does, indeed, neither save all, nor has to try, have said they could not worship that God, that I'd made Him into some terrible wicked thing (these are Christians). I understand from where they come from, but I cannot reconcile that place with Scripture, a place that reminds me of a Campus Crusade[r]'s testimony, who was taught inductive study, applied it to Romans 9, and became Reformed! thereafter--a stark rejection of Crusade's blatant Arminianism, if not Semi-Pelagianism, (something going by the name of the former quite often these days). I also think I've been guilty before, in this area, of simpletonism, such that I didn't recognize the difference of categories that in precise terms fall under such names as "volition", "agency", etc..

Anyway, a decent reply for those who protest that God would be a monster if He didn't want to save all, along such lines as "then he's making evil", or "[dot, dot, dot]" (strange because they start protesting along these lines, but we are, indeed, born evil, and it has nothing to do with their real item of protest--the supposed unfairness of saving some and not others), is simply pointing to Romans 9:20,
"Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why didst thou make me thus?"

What's funny about this, unlike the Christian philosophizers, is that it never attempts to defend God, His goodness is left unimpugned, assumed. One interesting blogger I know of There's a (but which I don't link to due to some troubling points in what the guy teaches1), I once saw write an excellently essay demonstrating the inaccessibility and mystery of God's wisdom as revealed in the book of Job: I highly recommend that book (Job) on this subject.


1 The guy is one who'll make statements such as he know that the NT forbids women from teaching men, but in practice it is different, he says, since he's experience being blessed by the preaching of a female presbyter: he justifies all sorts of deviations from the word by stating things like the meaning/intent of the Biblical text, and application, are two different things, though very often the application is actually what he's challenging. A pastor who I have found so often to demonstrate excellent judgment, sober and prudent, had this to say (from personal familiarity of that other blogger's writing/teaching),
"My impression of [...] is that he is more or less an old-fashioned "neo-orthodox" liberal. Up until about 1960, liberal biblical scholars did not usually pretend that the Bible supported all their liberal beliefs. They did tend to focus on things that they agreed with in the Bible, while keeping quiet about things they couldn't agree with, but when pressed on some point they usually just admitted that they didn't care much for what the Bible has to say about some things. That's where this guy is coming from. He wants people to appreciate certain things in the Bible that he likes.

After reading his blog for a couple of weeks some time ago, I stopped paying any attention to him. He is always trying hard to sound like some very profound and intellectual "maverick" theologian, sort of neo-neo-orthodox. But he seems to lack any real faith in the Word of God.

I mention him at all because he's the guy who pointed-out Job in this capacity, and to acknowledge that I am very, like many my age, dependent upon teachers.


  1. Someone actually reads my blog?! I am shocked...thank you :)

  2. Quote Cambria:

    "Someone actually reads my blog?! I am shocked...thank you :)"

    Reply: You're welcome. :-)