TO WHOM SHALL WE GO? (CONTINUED

TO WHOM SHALL WE GO? (CONTINUED)

This post is a continuation of my previous post, in which I gave one of three reasons for my faith in response to another WordPress blogger’s question “How do you keep God in your life?” The question was raised after the blogger noted how many people have left their Churches and their faith behind.

The first reason for my maintaining my faith in God was what I called the direct and obvious intervention of God to get me out of jams. I covered that in my previous posting.

The second reason for my faith is the supernatural character of Scripture, including its amazing consistency and prophetic accuracy. Understanding this feature takes more than a superficial glance at the Bible (I’m sure you’re well beyond that), and explaining it fully would be beyond the scope of this posting. I have posted many articles on this topic, and have addressed it in my book writings as well. For a more detailed development I’ll simply point to the appendices in my book Marching to a Worthy Drummer, and particularly to Appendix 4: The Inerrancy of Scripture. Here I’ll highlight a few basic reasons and some Biblical zingers that really grabbed me.

Scripture is a supernaturally beautiful document that identifies itself as inspired and inerrant. Paul, in 2 Timothy 3:16 and 17, and Peter, in 2 Peter 1:20 and 21, both make that claim. Despite what at least one group of pseudo-intellectuals asserts, the Bible is amazingly self-consistent, including the manner in which the two Testaments support each other.

Time and again, where my first impression was of Scriptural inconsistency, the resolution in favor of consistency gave me a deeper understanding of God. An example of this is the difference in the account of the birth of Jesus between Matthew and Luke. Matthew has Herod so jealous of Jesus that Joseph and Mary had to escape with him into Egypt until the ruler’s death. Luke, in contrast, describes a peaceful setting for Jesus’ birth. The culprit here is the tradition of having the Wise Men come to the manger where Jesus was born. That wasn’t the case, as is obvious, from Matthew’s account of Herod’s slaughtering of children two years and younger, that the Wise Men came to Israel at least a year after Jesus was born. Another tipoff is Matthew’s having the Wise Men come to Jesus’ house rather than the manger in Bethlehem.

The Old Testament description of the Passover (Exodus 12) correlates perfectly with the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ sacrifice of Himself for our salvation. Adding weight to this correlation is the account of Migdal Edar (watchtower of the flock) that places the manger of Jesus’ birth as the very same birthing place for the special lambs to be sacrificed in the nearby Jerusalem temple. That the lambs were wrapped in swaddling clothes at their birth to maintain their ritual perfection adds yet more weight.

In the sixth century B.C., the prophet Daniel (Daniel 9) foretold Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem to the very day from Artaxerxes Longimanus’ decree to rebuild Jerusalem in 445 B.C. (years after Daniel’s death) to His entry on an ass as recorded in Matthew 21. This entry wasn’t unique; it was prefigured by Solomon, who entered Jerusalem as king of Israel on his father David’s donkey (1 Kings 1:33-38 and Zechariah 9:9).

Ezekiel 4:5 and 6, in combination with Leviticus 26:18, foretells the return of Israel to its homeland on May 14, 1948. This was discovered by the late Biblical scholar Grant Jeffrey, who claimed that the ancient prophecy was accurate to the very day; I have personally verified it to the year 1948, to my astonishment.

The third reason for my faith, like the first, is personal, involving the love of God toward me, and my responsive love toward Him. It makes me a bit of a pariah, as the intimacy I feel is related to my belief that the Holy Spirit is feminine. I’ve written much about that in postings and books, and again I point to my book Marching to a Worthy Drummer, which presents the logic behind that belief. In the context of the family-based Godhead supported by a feminine Holy Spirit, I view the future marriage of the Church to Jesus to be both substantive and productive, a re-enactment of the divine union of Father and Holy Spirit.

My Baptist pastor kind of looks at me sideways sometimes, but he’s managed to convince himself that my views aren’t so far outside the box that they represent heresy. In fact, Scripture itself, other than a few masculine pronouns that I suspect were inserted later to replace the feminine ones associated with the Holy Spirit, consistently points to Her femininity. I don’t understand how that escapes the Church in general. It appears that the early Church did indeed understand that. More recently, the Moravian Church of the 1740s, established in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, held to that view during her most successful and productive period.

The bottom line is that with this view I am able not only to maintain my faith, but to love God with the fervor He commands in Matthew 22:35-38, which echoes Deuteronomy 6:4 and 5:

“Then one of them, who was a lawyer, asked [Jesus] a question, testing Him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said to him, You shall love the Lord your God, with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment.”

This kind of love is akin to the fervor with which I love my own wife, Carolyn. It’s a beautiful thing, and I wouldn’t give it up for anything.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: