Yea or nea, yes or no? Order and/or, chaos? Forty years ago..., Truther’s, (akin., ‘conspiracy theorists’), came to town. Jamaicans, growing up in the UK big towns and cities with Reggae, Roots, Rasta, Revolution, Repatriation (them/ Africa, by '83). Religion, Bible-based, and…
When these “dissident” vibes start to hit the mainstream, there is a little voice inside the public mind (including my own) that breaths a little sigh of relief and thinks, “Oh thank God! We’re going to return to sanity now. Things will be back to some kind of normal” etc. But this is all part of the game. It’s basically good cop/bad cop playing with you, teasing you a little this way and that. It starts by slamming on the full shock-and-awe terror tactic and never lets up until you’re reeling – either in fear or with rage. I say the latter because rage was my reaction as I’m sure it was the reaction of all who refused to be treated like little kids at Halloween. But here’s where it gets complicated: even that rage becomes part of the psy-op in that they’ve thought of that too. They don’t mind if some see through the shite as long as these awake ones feel isolated and in despair and exploding with a cyclical fury. Yes – this describes my own reaction. But then the theatre production ebbs a bit, eases up periodically to make you feel, “Well maybe there’s some light here!” – only to slam on the stupidity again – only to ease back again etc.
And the aim? As I’ve said before this is a long term production. This is a generational indoctrination. And it’s very much necessary to “ease” everyone into it since too much concentrated rage exploding is the last thing they want. Overt domination is inefficient and probably doomed. When a population is truly rebellious then they’re a nuisance. The trick is to change them gradually, knead them, crunch them up, keep them off kilter etc. A newly softened bewildered herd.
Thanks to you I have been studying Open Theism; most of which I have no problem with. I am willing to suspend my theory that God exists outside of time (I know it is Plato in my brain, but the indoctrination runs deep), but as I do not think we can conclude the matter; seeing as it was never a fixed belief, or a faith belief, but a theory - that is not a problem.
I only have one problem with Open Theism, and my problem with open theists is my problem with evangelicals, the belief they are, "Committed to affirming the infallibility of Scripture" or as evangelicals would say “Scripture is infallible/inerrant.” This I found in numerous places, some citing the open theist theologian: Gregory A. Boyd, God at War: the Bible and Spiritual Conflict (InterVarsity, 1997) 106. It is also an Open Theist doctrine.
Please can I ask where you stand on this? Not that it is any of my concern, I am just really interested. I don’t think Sax believes in infallibility or inerrancy and I think she would consider me a bit too evangelical about the Bible (sorry if I am misrepresenting you Sax, feel free to tell me to shut up). I do spend a lot of time in deep Bible study, but… my conclusion is that Jesus taught in Aramaic, the New Testament was then a translation of his teachings into Koine Greek (translation is always a form of interpretation), this was then copied numerous times giving us more New Testament variant readings than we have words in the New Testament. The variations can be to a doctrinal level, thus creating more heat than light in argument/discussion. Yes, okay I confess, I study Textural Criticism as did Gregory A. Boyd, who should know better as he was taught by the great Bruce Metzger, to whom we all owe a deep debt.
I believe in sticking to the major themes: Love, redemption, repentance, fellowship, caring for the least of these, justice. I do not believe it is wise to argue over the iotas and omicrons, thus I do not need to view the Bible as “infallible.” I would suggest the New Testament is “authoritative” in matters of faith, or the way to God. Theologian Thomas Jay Oord has an excellent article on this: http://thomasjayoord.com/index.php/blog/archives/problems-biblical-inerrancy although we have different conclusions (he rejects strict inerrancy but errs on the side of infallibility).
So much hot air has been wasted arguing over the doctrines that I am a firm believer in praxis (practise) over orthodoxy (right belief). We should judge by fruit, not word - as all good spiritual teachers agree. I admit, I do not know much, and I do not think I need to know. It is better to be an open theist aware of the power of choice and of our action, in the only time we have power: now. This does not limit God and it empowers us. (Calvinists, get real!)
I try to treasure the questions of what I do not know and live my life in alignment with the themes that Jesus taught. Not, as most Evangelicals do by believing they must follow the very letter of the New Testament as if it was an infallible/inerrant legal document. I am not suggesting Open Theists believe this, but “Infallibility” is something I left behind at Bible college, and I have no wish to return to its legalism.
Please feel free to ignore this, but it has helped me get my thoughts down in writing. I had not given Open Theism the time it deserved, thank you for pointing me in the right direction brother.