In addition to the conversation (or monologue) I am posting on Paul and his letter to the Romans, I routinely play with the good people over at the Jesus Creed. In the past couple days they have been discussing:
Christ and the Dragons - James Emery White thinks evangelicalism is teetering over a precipice, and his new book — Christ Among the Dragons: Finding Our Way Through Cultural Challenges — probes topics that are in need of serious discussion.
This discussion helped me advance a couple of ideas that I have been tossing around lately. The first, is the idea of what the gospel is in Christianity. I posted the same gospel that I wrote in my Romans Part 3 thread and also the following:
This all ties in together with the natural theology conversation of the other thread. Jesus knows we are human and that we will fall short of always loving God and Other. He tells us that sinning against God and Him is forgivable, because all will. However, as is in natural theology, it should be obvious to people that there is a right and wrong and you need to do the right thing. Jesus did us the favor of telling us this (the right thing is to love God and the Other). But the eternal sin is not the sin of Adam, the eternal sin, the unforgivable sin is the sin where you know right from wrong and do not do what is right. Where the Holy Spirit has guided you to knowing in your heart and you believe what is right and you choose to do wrong. That is the unforgivable sin. So in that vein God does not judge us, we judge ourselves by our own choosing.
I realize this is simplistic, but I can’t help but think that it has to be that simple. God does not save the smart, the educated (the rich), the well read, but the meek, the humble, the not so smart…
The natural theology that I am talking about in the quote above relates to where we are going in the letter of Paul to the Romans. I will be discussing that in more detail as we get to verse 18 and beyond in Chapter 1.
I also hope to write more about the eternal sin in future posts. The eternal sin is to sin against the Holy Spirit….
I have been wondering why we all must make the message of Jesus so tremendously complicated. So I have been trying to come up with a principle that could be used in our reading of the bible that would be similar to the cosmological principlethat is used in trying to figure out our place in the universe. The cosmological principle pretty much states that we are not in a unique place or time in our existence here on earth. By adopting that principle we are able to realize that the earth is not the center of the solar system, or our sun the center of the universe, or our galaxy the center of the universe. Instead, it makes us be humble. It makes us look against our human nature and strive to realize that it really is not all about us.
So I have come up with my first cut at the equivalent of a cosmological principle for Christianity.
The gospel must be simple.
So there it is.
I am pretty sure that I am going to make a new page on this site that will contain The Lost Codex. It is the gospel and teachings of Christianity, as best as I can render them, and I will update this over time.