29 February 2008

Theology the Viz Way

I came across this a while ago, and having read it to a couple of people, describing each scene as I did, I thought I may as well post it here.
'Theology is simply that part of religion that requires brains,' as G.K. Chesterton noted almost a hundred years ago in his copy of Holbrook Jackson's Platitudes in the Making. As such, I'm sure you'll be glad to hear that none of these problems has evaded the consideration of Christian theologians over the years. People have realised that there are certain paradoxes at work.

The efficacy of petitionary prayer, free will and predestination, the purpose of miracles, and overall questions of theodicy -- all these are subjects of debate and theological exercise even today. I'm not saying that they've all been answered, not by a long way -- they'd hardly still be subjects of debate if they were -- just that Christians tend to be aware that their faith isn't always a simple matter. After all, it'd be odd if these issues had entirely slipped the notice of the what GKC described as 'the one intelligent institution that has been thinking about thinking for two thousand years.'

So don't worry, it's not as if any of this is news. Contrary to what some people tend to think, being religious doesn't mean being stupid, and shouldn't involve shutting down our intellectual faculties. After all, when Our Lord said he were to be like little children, he was exhorting us towards innocence, not towards ignorance.

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