Exploring Our Matrix
The Blog of Dr. James F. McGrath, Clarence L. Goodwin Chair in New Testament Language and Literature at Butler University, Indianapolis
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This quote from John Shore came to my attention on Facebook (via Unfundamentalist Christians):
I found myself thinking of this scene from the Life of Brian:
So John Shore thinks he can know what the creator of the universe (who I assume is also John’s personal friend) wants based on a collection of ancient writings? Sounds more like “Quasi-fundamentalist Christians” to me.
And an idolator, because human language is equivocal, and to say anything about “the divine” is therefore idolatry, as Dr. McGrath has often explained.
If God wanted worms to think more, he would have given them more cognitive capability. If God wanted dogs to think more, he would have given them more cognitive capability. If God wanted humans to think more, he would have given them more cognitive capability. Independent of theories of inspiration, the Bible we have is the one we wrote (with or without “God”) for ourselves. (Unless you go with a conspiracy theory…)
I like to think that’s what the Parable of the Talents is about. God gave us a brain with which to think and we wants us to use it to figure out the world as best we can rather than burying it in the ground by embracing a religion and accepting its answers without question.
I’m a college chaplain, and I showed Life of Brian at our campus ministries semester kickoff event a couple of years ago. A few staff members raised their eyebrows, asking how I could show an anti-Christian movie. My reply was that it isn’t an anti-Christian movie; it is an anti-a-certain-type-of-Christianity movie.
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