Saturday, March 30, 2013

Good Friday Indeed

I went to lunch with one of my friends today and we discussed doubts he has about the resurrection and other supernatural religious claims. He is where I was a year ago and I enjoyed our discussion. It is rare to have a friend you can be that open with and freely discuss heavy topics. Most people get squeamish and then avoid you after the fact.
Getting into a liturgical church that celebrates holy week gives Good Friday a much deeper meaning. The service is somber and the chancel is bare. Even the pastor doesn't greet you as you leave. You really leave the Good Friday service feeling the loneliness Christ felt through the passion narrative and to his death.
I am ok with the resurrection now because I have looked into other religions or no belief at all. It seems to me that if the resurrection of Christ isn't part of the theology then the belief system becomes self centered. Most of these religions make you a god and not submissive to a greater force. I have listened to lots of debates and it boils down to whether or not you have faith. All worldviews require some level of faith to fill in the gaps that there is no proof. Atheistic Darwinian Evolution has many gaps and to buy it 100 percent you have to speculate and hope the science is correct to make a perfect belief system. In academia and scientific circles you have to talk the right way and believe the evidence to fit in. Sounds like science can get baptistry doesn't it.
I do think a lot of evolution is true, and am not a yec. There are just some things we are never going to know 100 percent about our origins or why God became incarnate on earth through Christ. For now the depth I have found in studying church history and Christian theology is amazing.  In many protestant traditions there is a shallowness and even dead ends. If you go back and study the church fathers and see they took on all comers and tried to hold to Orthodoxy while wrestling with the current secular thought of the day.
I guess if all you knowledge of Christianity is based on a fundamentalist model and that crumbles for you then it is easy to dismiss the resurrection claims. When you are taught a black and white version of faith, it is easier to dismiss the mystery. When I doubted I think the resurrection wasn't as much a problem for me, it was why it mattered. If all you gained from Christ's death and resurrection were more rules to follow it was pointless to me.
If your view of the Christian faith is just to follow rules and no inner transformation, then you are wasting your time. Eventually, the fakery will wear you out and you will have to act out embarrassingly to let off steam. That is why all of these Christian leaders end up getting busted for acting out like Swaggart, Haggard,  Schaap, and Bakker. You have to want to die to your old self and see the foolishness of sinful behavior that tempts you. That is the beauty of Holy Week, through worship we begin to understand the passion of out lord.

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