“Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” – John 12:24
“The last enemy to be destroyed is death...Death is swallowed up in victory.” – 1 Corinthians 15:26, 54
"The greater the sin, the greater the mercy, the deeper the death and the brighter the rebirth.” - C. S. Lewis
"This story...has the very taste of primary truth." - J. R. R. Tolkien

Monday, November 16, 2009

Examples Summarized: God Uses the Physical World to Reveal Spiritual Things

…One could identify more examples. Is what we perceive to be beauty in a sunset, or power in a waterfall, or majesty in a mountain, no more than the stimulation of something in our nervous system? It may be that, but it is NO LESS a perception of something objectively real. Is what we perceive to be elegance in mathematics merely a stimulation of some sort of “math gene”? It may be that, but it is NO LESS a perception of the very real mystery and depth of mathematics. Is the story of the dying and rising god, which was told in many pre-Christian societies, no more than a sociological phenomenon in which the same myths propagate among different people groups? It may be that, but death and resurrection is NO LESS, as C. S. Lewis says, “the very pattern of reality.” Indeed, given God’s character and given what he has already done in making the world as our environment, one would EXPECT all of these divine truths to be revealed to us through physical means (this is the essential point), and therefore that they are so revealed casts no doubt at all on their truth.

Allow me to state this general principle one more time, because it is very important. In general, given the context of the physical world as God’s creation, and supposing him to be a God who is involved with creation, one would only EXPECT him to use that creation (evolutionary processes, sociological patterns, our brains, and other things in the world) as a partial means in order to reveal to his creatures things about himself (beauty, moral truth, etc.) that are not simply physical things. After all, God made the physical world – we ought not to be surprised that he continues to make use of it in order to reveal to us spiritual, non-physical realities...

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