Unrivalled silliness and conceit?

Unrivalled silliness and conceit? February 15, 2020


A sunset along I 17.
Driving back to Phoenix from Sedona this evening, our friend Kent Flack took this photograph from our car. The sunset over Phoenix the previous night was much more beautiful, though.


Phoenix Arizona Temple, by Kent Flack
Almost back to our lodgings after a day in Sedona, we dropped by the Phoenix Arizona Temple, just for a look. Kent Flack took this photograph.


I’ve always wanted to visit Sedona, but somehow, prior to today, I never had.  It’s a gorgeous place, though a bit crowded with heavy traffic on this long holiday weekend.  Unfortunately, I forgot to bring my razor, which remains, accordingly, just as dull was it was before.  (Much like me, I suppose.)  On the positive side, though, I was neither sucked into a vortex nor abducted by UFO aliens.  And I didn’t buy a single crystal.




For various reasons, chief but not alone among them the fact that my wife and I love the writings of C. S. Lewis, we have lately been reading a passage every night from a volume that we acquired a few weeks ago at a book exchange party:  A Year with C. S. Lewis: Daily Readings from His Classic Works.  Here is the one from two nights ago, 13 February, on page 49:


We can all understand how a man forgives offenses against himself.  You tread on my toes and I forgive you, you steal my money and I forgive you.  But what should we make of a man, himself unrobbed and untrodden on, who announced that he forgave you for treading on other men’s toes and stealing other men’s money?  Asinine fatuity is the kindest description we should give of his conduct.  Yet this is what Jesus did.  He told people that their sins were forgiven, and never waited to consult all the other people whom their sins had undoubtedly injured.  He unhesitatingly behaved as if He was the party chiefly concerned, the person chiefly offended in all offenses.  This makes sense only if He really was the God whose laws are broken and whose love is wounded in every sin.  In the mouth of any speaker who is not God, these words would imply what I can only regard as a silliness and conceit unrivalled by any other character in history.

Yet (and this is the strange, significant thing) even His enemies, when they read the Gospels, do not usually get the impression of silliness and conceit.  Still less do unprejudiced readers.  Christ says that He is “humble and meek” and we believe Him; not noticing that, if He were merely a man, humility and meekness are the very last characteristics we could attribute to some of His sayings.  (from Mere Christianity)


Posted from Phoenix, Arizona



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