I stumbled on this a while back. I do not know who the original artist is on this or I would give attribution. If this is your image, please let me know so I can give you credit. If you would prefer me to take it down, I’d be happy to. It’s a bit long, so I put it after the “continue reading” to save space on my front page.
Sovereign Lord who works all things according to the counsel of your will, we pray to you for the families of Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newton, Conn. They are in desperate need of your grace in this hour.
As you well know, Lord, the curse has broken through the facade of our lives. Death has come where it should not be – to children. Lord give us faith to believe in your goodness and in your sovereignty even in a time such as this. Shield us from anger and bitterness toward you. Grant us wisdom to understand the root of death, which is sin, and give us hearts of repentance.
An entire community is now shrowded in sorrow and its tendrils stretch across our nation. Father, our minds cannot fathom a way to comfort these who have experienced this grief, so we look to you to be their comfort. Give us wisdom on how to engage the world at a time like this. I pray especially for believers in Newton; that they would be moved by your Spirit to reach out to the families that have been victimized by this – both those who have survived and those who have lost. I pray that they would seek your face and find strength and wisdom to engage in this time. Give them words to say so that they can minister grace and mercy to these families that will not only comfort them, but will also somehow magnify your glory even in this dark time. I pray that the hope and joy found in the Gospel of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ would shine through the darkness of this hour and that you would cultivate hearts of faith in your people at this time.
I pray for all of us who sit on the outside looking in. I pray also that we would engage our neighbors. I pray that debates over guns and mental health would not dominate the discussion. As much as is needed, let us be a voice of reason in those discussions, but give us the words and the wisdom to make sure that no conversation passes us without us taking hold of the opportunity to discuss the deeper Spiritual realities behind what has happened. Oh let the church be the beacon of compassion and hope in this crises. Let the church shine the light of the Gospel and truth. Use us to draw people unto yourself.
I pray these things in the name of Jesus Christ, the suffering servant who “made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death of the cross” – for us!
As President Obama hinted at, may the Lord heal the brokenhearted and bind up their wounds.
Actually, if you think about it, they don’t.
The statement implies, perhaps unintentionally, that great minds accept the status quo of what previous great minds have concluded. But that’s never true. New great minds arise by challenging the status quo. By looking at things in new ways, developing new hypotheses and theories, and creating new thought experiments, great minds expand and improve on what has come before by thinking differently. Einstein, Newton, and Galileo are some classic examples.
Like many of the “wars” being fought out there, I generally look at both sides with disdain on the Creation vs. Evolution debate. Like many issues, both sides are arguing against a straw man. The Creationist thinks that evolutionists designed this theory specifically so they can try to disprove God. While Evolutionists think that Christians live in a lala world completely inconsistent with reality.
I’m wholly sympathetic to the “science” side of the argument, even when they talk about evolution and millions of years, simply because when you start with the position that nothing is proved without evidence (skepticism) and then presuppose naturalism, it’s entirely rational to arrive at the conclusions that scientists deduce. It’s also not entirely unreasonable for them to judge people who do not presuppose naturalism to be superstitious. Naturalism simply says that nothing is knowable that cannot be detected by the 5 senses. This would seem to then imply that there is nothing supernatural, since only natural things can be detected by the 5 senses. This is a bit like an ear trying to assert that there is no such thing as light because it cannot hear it, but I digress. Even still, I don’t consider it irrational for scientists to believe what they believe.
I’m also sympathetic to the “creationist” side of this debate. The most vocal of this group may in fact fit the straw man or stereotype, a la Answers in Genesis, but like the Westboro Baptist Church on the issue of homosexuality, Answers in Genesis does not represent the whole of Christianity, and I would content they don’t even represent the majority. Most Christians on this issue are concerned with reconciling what they believe to be true in the Bible with what science tells them.
I don’t tend to follow current events very closely. I’m of the mind that most of what is reported in the news is either none of my business or is not worth my time. I couldn’t care less for celebrity gossip and for the media machine of sensational journalism. Nevertheless, I can’t stay away from the big stories due to the Internet and thus I have come across Chick-Fil-A and their stance on gay marriage. I would probably not comment on this, but it’s really struck a nerve on something for me and I’m finally ready to chime in. I am fed up with this whole debate, and by that I mean I’m frustrated with both sides. I’m not going to rehash the whole story here. You can find it for yourself on the web.
I am going to respond, however, to something I saw in a Huffington Post article covering Chick-Fil-A’s Facebook Response. On July 19, Chick-Fil-A posted
Much has been said about the relationship between faith and reason. Many times faith and reason seem to be opposed. What is the Christian to do when faced with a claim that seems to have irrefutably evident reason behind it but contradicts the teachings of Scripture? If we believe that the Bible alone (when properly interpreted) is our infallible authority, what are we to do when met with claims such as Evolution?
As I’ve thought of this I’ve never really found an answer I’m comfortable giving. Though I hold both faith and reason to be important, the problem remains of what to do when they conflict. I recently remembered a book we discussed in my ethics class at Cedarville. It was by H. Richard Niebuhr called Christ and Culture. The book discussed five approaches to the relationship between Christ and Culture from a historical and ethical perspective. The details of the book are huge wash in my brain, but I remembered them enough to look up what the five views were. As I did so, I thought it might be beneficial to extrapolate these five categories into five views of the relationship between Faith and Reason.
This post is a response to an article I read here. I hope you can tell that I’m trying to be somewhat light hearted and humorous in my response, since I’m trying to give some thoughts along the lines of what he’s saying, but also stand for some very important truths that I think are largely ignored, by all sides. If you’re at all confused by what I’m saying, go read his article first. From here on, I’m speaking in the second person, with the author of the original article as the antecedent for “you”.