Friday, August 18, 2006

Which Toolkit for Fixing Reality?

I've been away for a while. Seems really hard to find time to sit and write for a blog. Would be easy enough if I just kept a diary, but I never meant that to be the purpose of this. I wanted to share theological thoughts and get into theological discussions.

This seems to be happening quite a lot at work at the moment with one of my colleagues who attends a brethren assembly and holds pretty strongly to a Darby-esque theology, in particular dispensational pre-millenialism, and plenary inspiration of Scripture. It has been really challenging (and enjoyable) to chat with him, but I have realised how different it is to debating theology when the debating parties are using the same tools. He uses ultra-literal interpretation and proof texting, (with a very impressive amount of scripture memorised and cross-referenced mentally, albeit within a particular theological interpretive grid) while I tend to come at things with a more philosophical viewpoint - Scripture provides a springboard for speculating on theories to explain what isn't explicitly written. I think it reflects a difference in approach to life in general ... details vs concepts. (Perhaps one reason why I was going to have to come out of engineering eventually). It does help me to realise how quickly I can leave scripture behind once it is used as a springboard. This is fine as long as I am discussing in circles where "this is what might be the case, and I'm OK if it isn't" is an acceptable outcome for my meditation, but not much good in the concrete world where people are asking "what does God actually expect of us, and what part is he promising to play in my everyday life".

But our differences don't cause aggro, or disrespect, which has been great. I'll finish with a quote from CS Lewis which I hope you won't find to sentimental to be meaningful ...
"The man who agrees with us that some question, little regarded by others, is of great importance, can be our Friend. He need not agree with us about the answer." (The Four Loves, Collins 1960, ch4).

No comments: