Friday, January 29, 2010

Theology and Government

So I know that I’ve already blogged today, but I needed to have an update on how the rest of the day went, if not for you, at least for my memory. Friday club went well tonight. Last week we prepared and got to the office and nobody showed up. This week we had 3 people. It was quite exciting. After reading through the dialogue from the Chronicles of Narnia, we watched the movie and then discuss. We got to forgiveness and talked about that for awhile and then ended up with the Golden Rule. It’s about a 25 minute walk home and our boss lives very close to us so we generally walk together. On the way home we were talking about Islam, something I am always eager to learn about. She said a phrase that I have heard her utter once or twice before. She said, “Theology and Religion is what divides people, it is God who unites them.” It is an odd thing to say, but devastatingly true. How is it that the study of God and the practice of relating to God divides people while God Himself unites people? It’s a funny thing to think about.

So with that and with the discussion about the Golden Rule I started thinking. My thoughts are this: theology, like government, is best kept small. When government starts getting large, they start to get all up in people’s space. They start many new projects and initiatives which are poorly managed and unable to be funded. Government, when it gets too big, will end up collapsing on itself. Theology is the same way. We come up with all these doctrines and all these ideas and pretty soon we think we have God figured out with our poorly defined thoughts. We are quick to have a strong will, but unhurried to have a soft heart. The more ideas you have about God, the more your ideas are probably false. That’s what I love about Jesus. The guy lived simply. He practiced what He preached and loved on everyone He could. He had His ideas about God, but they were all relational. He wasn’t obsessed with facts, because when it comes to God, there are no “facts.” He is and that’s that. What else can you really be absolutely certain about? So what is the point? The point is that I want to see Christians start living out the Golden Rule. You can find the Golden Rule in many other religions, but it is usually in the negative: “Don’t do to others whatever you wouldn’t want done to you.” A good rule, but Jesus is a radical guy and took it one step further. He said, “Do to others, as you want them to do to you.” That means that you have to get your hands dirty and mess with relationships and get involved with people. I want to keep my ideas of God basic and simple. If I get too many ideas, they are likely to come crashing down on me. And personally, I don’t want trillions of dollars in debt like the US government.

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