By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. -- Hebrews 11:3
Wednesday, February 3, 2016
The Seen and the Unseen
Work has been taking an unusual amount of time lately. Perhaps I am slower than I used to be. Anyway, I have let some things go, including the blog. I have been doing more and maybe thinking less. I’m not sure that’s altogether a bad thing. One thing I have been thinking about is faith.
What we believe has implications. If we believe that Jesus is the Christ, that He is the only begotten Son of God sent, not to condemn the world but to save it, this tells us something about the nature of the cosmos and our place in it. This means that we are not merely clever animals, that reason and logic work because we live in a reasonable universe running according to mathematically intelligible laws, that it was created by a Mind of which ours is the image and likeness.
Faith in Christ means that we believe God is love and that He is Good. That, in turn, means that love and good rule over all. It means that we cannot lose by doing the will of God or by loving our neighbor. If we do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God (Micah 6:8), no matter what circumstances we face, no matter how horrible, frightening, and unfair life may seem in the short term, we will be all right in the end.
This is the choice we have: to live by faith or to live by what is seen. We can live by the standards of the world system for the world’s approval to get the most out of our short and -- sometimes, nasty and brutal existence on this planet. The reward for that, regardless of how good we are at it, is death. Conversely, we can choose to reject the world and its standards and live by the truth revealed in Christ. This may result in mockery, scorn, and ridicule from those around us. In some times and places, it results in actual persecution, abuse, torture and death.
What is important to remember is that the people of faith are not the ones breaking the rules. It is the world that is constantly forced to reform and revise in the face of reality. The world plays its game and lives in its delusion as long as it can until the fragile shell of lies is shattered and it must seek refuse in a new one. There are moments in history, in between the dreams, where truth asserts itself and all cling to it as to a rock in a raging sea. This point in history is not one of those, but it may be soon.