Disclaimer: About This Blog
THIS BLOG IS: my personal journey of how I am rethinking some of my spiritual beliefs.
THIS BLOG IS NOT: intended to point fingers at people who I think are wrong.
I do not believe the final judgement will be based on how many correct answers we get on a theology exam. I believe many people throughout history have had genuine relationships with our Lord and Saviour Jesus, despite holding questionable beliefs and practices. I make no claim to having it all figured out or being your judge. If we end up disagreeing over these topics I pray we can find a way to demonstrate grace.
Monday, August 9, 2010
Discovering the God Imagination
A short review of a book written by a 'blog friend' who shares a great biblical name :) http://jonathanbrink.com
I agree with Jonathan Brink that there are flaws in how we view God.
That God created us but shortly after allowed us to be tricked by Satan and became evil at the core.
That God could not be in a relationship with his children anymore... that he couldn't love us since we were by nature evil.
That God's judgment towards us will now be one of eternal torment.
That the only way God could get us back was by killing his own son.
Jonathan Brink lists a number of concerns from this story we have created. I have wrestled with the same concerns. Basically it just doesn't paint a picture of a God who loves me the way I am. It's a God I should fear, but not a God to get too close with.
Jonathan Brink proposes we have misread the story. That the fall in the garden wasn't so much us becoming evil, but us losing sight of the good that we are. We have been tricked into viewing ourselves as evil. But we are still the good that God created. We need to understand that God always loves us, that God always sees the good in us - the good that he created - in His own image.
I love that Jonathan Brink is encouraging Christ followers to revisit this topic. I'd love to see more people engaging in the discussion.
The way I've personally sorted it out is this: I'm not sure if we have created the right questions. I'm not sure if we need to decide if our nature is basically good, or basically evil. I'm not convinced that was one of the big questions the writers of Scripture were attempting to answer. I tend to think of us as children. Yes children can do evil selfish things, but they are also capable of doing loving unselfish things. Children are in a learning process being guided by their parents (and others) with the goal of following the right path for each of them. I think I am God's child. He created me, and loves me more than I can imagine. He always has a plan for me. However I often do my own selfish things. That is why Jesus came preaching the good news of the kingdom of God. He wanted to remind us that when we allow Him to rule in our lives our lives can be what He intended them to be. Jesus left us with His Spirit to guide us. The choice is do we rule, or do we allow God to rule in and through us. I don't think people are either evil or good. We are all God's children. Some are in broken relationships with their Father, and others are allowing their loving Father into their lives to guide and direct them. But God loves us all. That's my 2 cents.
But maybe my response is too simplistic for you. If so I'd encourage you to read Discovering the God imagination. Jump into the conversation and wrestle some with the question yourself. What is the gospel? Did the fall make everyone evil, and does God hate evil sinners. Or does He love us all?