One as Another
“Adolescent killed by elephant in tragic misunderstanding”, claims newpaper, The Christian Appropriator
A tragic death occurred yesterday, when young Johnny C. Liche was trampled by an elephant during a circus performance. Upon questioning, his teacher, Mrs. Rela T. Vism, stated that she was shocked that it happened. “We teach the children about great beasts,” said 4th grade teacher, Vism. “He was such a bright boy and always knew all the answers – especially in zoology lessons,” she continued. This is no unique occurrence, though. It seems that many students from After-Modernity Elementary School of Subjectivity have been suffering these “accidents”, due to a lack of LIVING WHAT THEY LEARN . . .
The article went on to explain that some methods of education lack the ability to appropriate what has been learned. Appropriation could be defined as,
from L. appropriationem (nom. appropriatio) “a making one’s own,”specifically regarding education – to take knowledge and apply it to actual living.
Some children know about fire, yet think they won’t get burned; know about ethics, but cheat without remorse; learn about the size and nature of elephants, yet stand below a bull during a dangerous performance – these are the results of taking things that are true and treating them as mere possibility. It is the motto of the After-Modernity Elementary School of Subjectivity, or (AMESS), to imbue such compartmentalization:
Learning that Truth is what You make it
The Christian Appropriator continues,
This is an issue on all fronts of life, Christianity not being immune. It is not uncommon for people to “know” something as true, yet not live it out. In fact, the knowledge, for some, proves to most often be empty at best and false at worst. The Fathers understood the difference between Knowledge, Understanding and Belief (latin, notitia, assensus, fidicia). It is only when one believes (fiducia) a something as True (a capital “T” being Objective Truth), will one apply it to their lives. Many would deny the existence of such objective truth, yet ironically “believe” that statement to be absolutely true. Everyone believes, it’s just some believe the elephant is a fact only in the story and others find the truth in the sound of his trumpet and the pound of his footstep. They need not be mutually exclusive, the information and the thing. It is just that the information must always point to the thing – AND THE THING IS THE POINT, NOT THE SOUNDS AND SYMBOLS ABOUT THE THING . . . NOT JUST THE LANGUAGE. This is where Anselm, Descartes and even Aquinas helped us a bit in their discussions of ontology – namely that something can be shown to exists because we can conceive of it in our minds. They apply this mainly to God and His existence. One might argue that could mean that because a little girl could draw a pink, panda with purple polka dots, dancing with monkey on a high-wire made of noodles, over a sea filled with mermaids that such things exist. This takes the argument further than it intends. It would merely prove that pandas, monkeys, colors, fishtails, women, oceans, dance positions and noodles exist. The unusual and unrealistic in the painting is just a combination of reality, otherwise the child could not conceive of them in their mind.
Truth is definitive, not relative. We are not to define it, rather discover it before “the shoe drops.”
By the way, the article above is not actual, but the point is.
Essentially a community is designed and populated with robotic wives – perfect robotic wives, so their husbands can do what ever they want without the trappings of spousal accountability, commitment, humility, etc. It is: I create a world that appears to be like the real world, yet under the surface it is artificial . . . maybe sinister.
Remember that idolatry is really self-worship. That is, when one carves an idol, names the idol, places the idol and then decides (without the input of the idol, I might add) how the idol is to be worshipped – and yes, I’m talking about pseudo-pagan/animistic polity here – at the end of the day, who’s Creator; who’s Sovereign; who’s the real God? For the idolators, it’s themselves.
Let me lob another kernal into the popper before I get to the punch-line. It was C.S. Lewis in his The Four Loves, I think, that remarked in regards to love, that at the moment it becomes your god, it becomes your devil.
Now, with those two ideas in the hopper, let’s get back to the original. The church is messy and sometimes a mess. Why? What’s the problem? People.
Of course, they’re (we’re) the point also.
It was a phrase that just popped out today during our friends of the church plant meeting – “We worship the way we worship Jesus more than we just worship Jesus.”
If we look around we see it all the time – great emphasis on style, little emphasis on content. Even when we have solid content, the way that it is presented eclipses the message. I remember being at the T4G conference last year and when John Piper spoke, I literally thought the two guys directly in front of me were going to come out of their skin. The were shaking first at his appearance and then about every 30 seconds one would say to the other, “Hear how he said that? He’s awesome!” - Or some derivative of the like.
“Hear how he said that” . . .
This is Way Worship, not even real worship – not even real idolatry. It’s a cheat.
1. What do we do?
2. (and maybe more forefront in our minds) How do we do it?
Now, there is a danger crouching behind these questions, but I will deal with that in 3.2.
So far we have seen that we have been given a Mission and such an imperative has the implied call to obey it. I suppose it isn’t too cliche to say that God doesn’t make suggestions. This should be delightfully obeyed, because it should find an immediate harmonious connection within our own desires, thus given us a very organic internal Motivation – namely, that we are Christians who love Jesus and we want others to love Him too. If you have trouble agreeing with the first two points in this paragraph and series, then you may not know Him, even likely so. If that is the case, go here.
So, to answer the first question, we are to make disciples of Jesus Christ. This must never be eclipsed by men, fellowships, denominations, traditions nor religion.
We DO NOT make disciples of ourselves.
We DO NOT make disciples of (human) leaders.
We DO NOT make disciples of our local fellowships (churches).
We DO NOT make disciples of a denomination.
We DO NOT make disciples of a particular school of thought.
We DO NOT make disciples of Christianity.