I am in a state of confusion. Not about my faith, but rather how hard it is for me to understand some of the finer points. In the pew things of religious and faith importance are often lost on us Lay people who sit there. I doubt if there is a large percent of us in the pew that progress beyond the study books and Sunday school books we receive at church and of course reading our bibles.We know the stories and there are certain verses that hold a special place in our faith walk but once past that we sometimes struggle to understand. If we, the layperson in the pew, decide we would like to learn more, we take the first step into the confusing world of theology. Now Merriam Webster’s short definition of theology reads as follows:
“the study of religious faith, practice, and experience; especially : the study of God and of God’s relation to the world (Merriam Webster)”
We make a decision to learn more about what the Bible tells us, to go beyond the words there and seek a closer relationship with our God. We do that by reading the Bible more, praying and seeking his will in our lives and then we take the next step. The books! Oh my the number of books that have and are being written about faith, how to live a Christian life, God’s plan for our lives, the list is endless. Then it happens, we suddenly discover the enormous amount of writings by biblical scholars and to make a point here, these are men who have spent their lives studying the Bible and seeking to understand what is written and it is a blessing that writings such as these are for the most part, thanks to this digital age, available to most of us. So we step out of the pew and enter the warehouse of this knowledge seeking to better understand God and our relationship with him.
For those of us in the pew, stepping into this warehouse of knowledge is like searching the shelves with a five foot ladder but the knowledge we need starts at seven or better. You see we have just been introduced to Theology, mans take on what God said, what it means, and what our relationship to it is. This week in our Wednesday evening study we got to the discussion of the Trinity and I was totally lost. Oh I know what the theology of the Trinity is, or I thought I did and after getting home I decided to go to that warehouse of knowledge. The next day I was still carrying that ladder to many different sources in my quest to better understand the Trinity. I have a nice collection of different commentaries by well-educated and spirit led men. Usually when I am writing a blog, or a study lesson, I will examine many commentaries, read the scripture, and yes, pray for the Spirit to guide me. Found this while working through that warehouse the source listed below:
“The doctrine of the Trinity has been a divisive issue throughout the entire history of the Christian church. While the core aspects of the Trinity are clearly presented in God’s Word, some of the side issues are not as explicitly clear. The Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God—but there is only one God. That is the biblical doctrine of the Trinity. Beyond that, the issues are, to a certain extent, debatable and non-essential. Rather than attempting to fully define the Trinity with our finite human minds, we would be better served by focusing on the fact of God’s greatness and His infinitely higher nature. “Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out! Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor?” (Romans 11:33-34).”
I suggest you go to their website for the entire article. Here is their URL for this item. https://www.gotquestions.org/Trinity-Bible.html
The Book of Revelation, often called the Revelation to John, the Apocalypse of John, The Revelation, or simply Revelation or Apocalypse (and often misquoted as Revelations), is a book of the New Testament that occupies a central place in Christian eschatology. (Wikipedia)
Now sometimes, ok, most of the time I am doing research I find words that require more research. Happens a lot in the warehouse. Christian eschatology, meaning what? Christian eschatology is a major branch of study within Christian theology dealing with the “last things.” This book can be frustrating because of its amazing cast of characters, symbolic imagery and how is something written over 2000 years ago to be viewed in our day.
These are just two examples of things that confront us on our journey of faith.
For us in the pew there are sometimes more questions than answers. The wonderful thing is that in this as in all things God will make a way. I came into this blog confused about some things and I leave it still confused but having discovered a little gem. I am going to alter this quote from gotquestions.com just a bit.
“Rather than attempting to fully define the written Scripture with our finite human minds, we would be better served by focusing on the fact of God’s greatness and His infinitely higher nature.”
“Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out! Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor?” (Romans 11:33-34).” Amen and Amen!!
I will leave you with this thought….next time you find yourself stumped or confused, in any situation you have my permission to use the following. “The difference between the difference is relative to the unlikeness thereof.” While they are trying to figure out what in the world you are talking about, you will have time to get to the warehouse.
I greatly appreciate those who read this blog and want you to know that I have no problem being corrected. I spend time trying to be sure that there is reasonable accuracy in what I write. I always make it a point to credit others whose writings I reference. It is important that we christians continue to learn, know what we believe and share it with others. Thank you for joining me in the pew this week. To make it a bit easier here is my email if you have comments or other thoughts as to the accuracy of some material. firstname.lastname@example.org
Life is Good