C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

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SEG
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Re: C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

Post by SEG » Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:19 am

Og3 wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 6:01 am
Lewis is not saying that no witches have ever existed. He is saying that we do not kill witches today because our legal system -- the corporate "we" -- do not believe in such things.
It is you that is missing the point here Og. He is ignoring the fact that an author of the Bible believed that witches existed/they should be killed and it was the cause of untold misery that is still in operation today.
If we did—if we really thought that there were people going about who had sold themselves to the devil and received supernatural powers from him in return and were using these powers to kill their neighbours or drive them mad or bring bad weather, surely we would all agree that if anyone deserved the death penalty, then these filthy quislings did.
Sure we would NOT agree that another mythical being called the devil existed and people should not EVER kill and torture innocent people from acting on a crazy passage from the Bible, let alone calling the victims "Filthy Quislings".
Filthy quislings? Is this what he calls old women and children in Africa today that are suspected by ignorant Christians over there that have blamed them for crop failure for example?
No, that is what he would call - subjunctive case here, please note -- someone who had in actual fact:
1.) Sold himself or herself to an actual indisputable evil power (i.e. an actual devil, not a figurative or mythical one),
Lol! Where's this indisputable proof of an evil power, an ACTUAL devil?
AND
2.) Received ACTUAL supernatural powers in return, AND
3.) Were using these powers to:
... 3a.) Kill their neighbors, OR
... 3b,) Drive them mad, OR
... 3c.) Bring bad (i.e. destructive) weather;
Whatever it says in the Bible about magical powers, doesn't necessitate them actually existing. Your thinking is just as ignorant as the ancient/3rd world people today that follow the illogical commands written in the Bible.
THEN, in that HYPOTHETICAL CASE, such a person would be a filthy Quisling: filthy in the sense of the impurity of the spirit within them, and filthy in the sense of being undeserving of mercy; Quisling in the sense of a traitor (to humanity, siding instead with unclean and impure spirits dedicated to the destruction of humanity) who accepted power in exchange for treachery, as did the late and unlamented Vidkun Quisling, who donates his name to traitors everywhere (In America we might have said that such a person was a Benedict Arnold).
Your hypothetical case is built on crazy foundations. It's like saying a unicorn or a 7 headed dragon is a Quisling in the sense of a traitor and killing such a being would not only be the JUST thing to do, but the only SMART thing to do as well. Oh hold on...
To make it even worse, he uses an analogy to liken these persecuted wretches to rodents!
He is not speaking of humans innocently accused, but of an actual bona fide witch, were there (hypothetically) to be one nearby in actual fact. To call such a filthy quisling by the name of a rodent is only an insult to the rodent.
Sure, whatever you say...
Last edited by SEG on Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Premise One: If a compassionate God exists, then he would do things just as a compassionate person would.
Premise Two: God doesn't do things as a compassionate person would.
Conclusion: Therefore, a compassionate God does not exist.

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Re: C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

Post by Og3 » Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:23 pm

Okay, SEG, if you don't get it, then you don't get it. I'd ask you to read it again, but...
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Re: C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

Post by SEG » Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:41 pm

Og3 wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:23 pm
Okay, SEG, if you don't get it, then you don't get it. I'd ask you to read it again, but...
...but reading it again wouldn't allow me to share your irrational beliefs in an actual devil or other magical beings that are made up in your Bible. Sorry, there is no other way to say it. Mere Christianity should have been called Abject Christianity or Crazy Christianity. To enjoy this book you need to accept without question a divinely created, universal, objective morality, the existence of good and bad gods, a historical Jesus and whatever else pops into his head without a shred of evidence. I'm done with this book. If this is the best apologetics book (and I think it is) I'm done with the rest of them too.
Premise One: If a compassionate God exists, then he would do things just as a compassionate person would.
Premise Two: God doesn't do things as a compassionate person would.
Conclusion: Therefore, a compassionate God does not exist.

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Re: C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

Post by Og3 » Tue Jun 25, 2019 12:34 am

So in other words, you will not seriously consider Lewis' ideas or any other idea in conflict with your own *coughKripkeanDogmatismCough* so there is no point in explaining Lewis to you.

I've shown you that your knee-jerk reaction was not actually aimed at what Lewis wrote, but rather than answer what he wrote, you insist on dancing with straw men. Okay, if that's what you really want, have fun. When you're ready to discuss what Lewis actually wrote, let me know.
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Re: C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

Post by SEG » Thu Jun 27, 2019 2:21 am

Og3 wrote:
Tue Jun 25, 2019 12:34 am
So in other words, you will not seriously consider Lewis' ideas
I've already done that and he has come up short.
so there is no point in explaining Lewis to you.
I don't need any more explanations, he makes stuff up without providing any verifiable evidence and pretends to know the mind of God without giving any good explanation of HOW he knows. Just like someone else we know.
I've shown you that your knee-jerk reaction was not actually aimed at what Lewis wrote, but rather than answer what he wrote, you insist on dancing with straw men.

Which straw men? You need to be specific if you want to talk about it.
Premise One: If a compassionate God exists, then he would do things just as a compassionate person would.
Premise Two: God doesn't do things as a compassionate person would.
Conclusion: Therefore, a compassionate God does not exist.

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Re: C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

Post by marcuspnw » Thu Jun 27, 2019 6:46 pm

Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am

So with Conscience pointing to an intelligent creator, the argument is not that we have a conscience and that therefore there is a God who gave it to us -- THAT would be analogous to Newton's thumbs -- but that we have a conscience and we ought not to have. We ought to have a sense that whatever will help us is good and screw everyone else. And we see that in primitive defective minds: We call them sociopaths.

We can apply the hindsight bias and say, "Well, we have a conscience, therefore we clearly can develop one naturally without a God-given pattern" but this is begging the question. We believe that a conscience might develop through herd-instincts and similar survival of the group instincts, but this is backwards reasoning. Also, Lewis raises the point that there are times when our herd-instincts direct us one way, our survival instinct goes another, and it is the conscience, an over-riding tertium quid, which tells us which thing is best to do at that moment.

When SEG and I discussed it, we spoke of a sailor seeing an unconscious shipmate two decks below: Herd-instinct says to save the buddy; Survival instinct says to save oneself; and proper training -- what conscience knows is right because of training, that is -- tells us to alert others, don breathing apparatus, and to climb down in a well-organized rescue.

So it's not exactly the same as Newton observing that we have thumbs.
The question is do the behavioral traits express themselves over time through genetic adaptation to a fitness environment or were they hard-wired by a designer. I didn't expect him to dwell on this as his intent is to inform the readers of basic Christianity and believers assume that God created life regardless of His methods.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am

Not to put words into Lewis' mouth, but when Lewis says that it is simple, he seems to mean simplistic. His point is that atheism rarely if ever addresses the meat of the faith; doctrine as it is held by informed adults who have carefully considered the proposition.

He says in the referenced passage that the atheist typically attacks a version of Christianity suitable for a six-year -old, and when a Christian in response explains the deep doctrines behind that simple version, and the reasoning behind those doctrines, the atheist then shouts that it's too complicated and that he cannot understand it; that it's dizzying and overly complex.

Well, we can't have it both ways. We can't oppose Christianity as simplistic but refuse to hear the deep doctrines.

And that is why he says that atheism is "too" simple: that is, too simplistic.
During most of his lifetime, the logical positivists in England were at their prime so he does make a valid criticism. In their view, there was simply no meat to address.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am

Christians find the universe meaningful because of God; God and meaning, to a Christian, cannot be divorced. That the universe APPEARS meaningful is a sign of God, but it is only God who gives life meaning.

We do not mean that you cannot find fulfilling things to do; but ultimately, in a godless universe, those things are meaningless. You build a great skyscraper to be your legacy. Three weeks after you die, they tear it down to make a new freeway. You give to the poor. The next year a hurricane kills them all. You leave a fortune to your children. After you die, they spend it all on strippers and booze. Or worse, give it to a con man selling cheap bridges in Brooklyn.

When we come down to it, a universe without God is a random series of events. Tomorrow the earth might be struck by a random meteor and all of our fulfilling exploits might be so much dust plus a few curious artifacts on the moon. In such a universe, a person is just a gamete generator, producing another meaningless lump of DNA.

If that seems wrong -- if it feels like the universe has a meaning -- then you are feeling that there must exist something outside our universe that gives it meaning. Otherwise, death is the ultimate mockery of fulfillment and meaning in life. Do not ask if you "buy" it, do not ask if it's pessimistic. Ask if it's true or false. Does life as a whole have meaning, yes or no?
You are conflating meaning with permanence. Something can be meaningful and still be temporary. For example, teaching my child to ride a bicycle is still meaningful to both of us although it occurred in years past and is no longer necessary. However, I don’t miss the accompanying backache so permanence is not always a desirable quality.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
The problem is the method. Suppose that I am ten years old and wish to be an adult. I can start imitating adults around me -- smoking cigarettes, spending my days in office buildings, driving cars, living beyond my means, becoming involved in adult activities... Or I can follow the plan before me, going to school, growing into adult thinking, adult action, and adult responsibility over time. In one case, I'm likely to have any number of misfortunes interfere with my becoming an adult, or at least a proper adult as I am meant to be. In the other case, I'm likely to become the sort of adult that I have the potential to become.

We want to be like God in taking on responsibilities that we are not capable of handling, such as being our own arbiters of right and wrong, or trying to rule our own lives based on our own emotional whims -- things that we are not spiritually mature enough to handle.

God intends us to develop into "little Christs" by a gradual process of growth and development, in which we slowly but surely become more Christ-like over time. Paradoxically, to want to play God is to desire power without responsibility, but Christ modeled giving up power to take on responsibility. And that is where the cryptic sayings of the new testament come from: That the first shall be last and the last shall be first. We are most surely on our way to being like God when we become the servant of men -- remember Christ, washing the feet of lowly fishermen, a task relegated to the lowest of servants.

So wanting to become little gods on our own is a bad thing; wanting to become like Christ through the models of humility and meekness that he modeled is a good thing. Even though, as you correctly say, Jesus is God.

Well, I think what Lewis and you are trying to say is that the goal of being a little god/Christ is good but we can’t achieve this goal apart from accepting Jesus Christ as Lord. So there was a little truth when the serpent spoke although his intent was to deceive.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
That's just the surface of the argument from desire. You see, the key premise is that every desire has a matching gratification. Every itch has a scratch; every hunger has food; every thirst has water. But for justice, or perfect love, or perfect joy -- for these desires there is not perfect analog. Not in this world. Which argues well, says Lewis, that we were made for a different universe.
Here I think Lewis is influenced in his thinking by Plato. For hunger, there is no perfect food and one will be hungry again. In fact, one can choose a variety of nourishment which will achieve the temporary goal of satiation. There is no one perfect food so why should there be one perfect love or joy or justice? Are we not well-made for the world in which we live? If so, then why should we think we are destined for a different one?
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
Think of the universe as a book. You, the reader, are able to see the entire book at once. To you, the beginning and the end are only an inch or two apart. If you know the book well -- if perhaps it is a book that you wrote -- then you can possibly open it to any page and know both what is before and what is after, the end from the beginning, the thoughts and intents of the hearts of the characters.

If you are in that book, then you cannot know the end from the beginning; the arrow of time points one way, from page one to page 243. You know only what it has been ordained that you should know, and only on the page where it is ordained that you shall learn it. But the author is outside of your time. He is apart, separate; he knows the entire story, envisions the forest on the day the seeds fell there and on the day that the lumber is cut down. And it is possible because to him they have happened and are happening and will happen at the same moment, as an author sees the story all at once from a single vantage point.

So it makes perfect sense that the God who invented time would stand outside of time.

My criticism is that the analogy requires you to reintroduce God back into time and space and so isn’t a good example as an explanation of how God in not in time. If you have a book and you are reading, you can only do so in time. The words are written in sequence. Furthermore, you cannot read them without reading the words and letters in sequence. This takes time and space. Imagine the book is not written on paper and ink but etched in glass plates. Then, you can hold all the plates up at once. Now this gets you a little bit closer to the idea of “not in time”. However, you cannot make out any pattern. If all the etchings are reaching you simultaneously then there is no order and no decipherable book.

For God to hear your prayers, He must be experiencing time and space. Otherwise, your thoughts and utterances cannot be deciphered. Your thoughts require time for you to think them and for Him to receive them in an intelligible pattern.

The knowledge of God revealed in scripture is that He is the alpha and omega. He is at the beginning and He is at the end. Also, throughout the ages of history, He is here. That’s as far as I am willing to go in explaining the Christian concept of God’s interaction with time. I can’t imagine God standing outside of time without a dimension and a moment whereby I can place Him. Time and space keep creeping back into this idea. It’s baffling but then so is the idea of initial singularity.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
Imagine a man who builds a robot, and also fathers a son. One of these is a creature -- made but not begotten -- and the other is a son, begotten and not made. The son contains a part of the father, and is made from the father's substance, and is like the father. The creature is an interpretation, and image of the father, perhaps, but not a part of the father.
But the word begotten infers that a father precedes a son but that is not the doctrine. My criticism is that he should have started with an introduction of the original Greek word of monogenes. This is a clearer (at least for me) starting point than the English translation of begotten which can easily lead to misunderstanding. Now I might have missed it or he could have addressed this in detail at another time or in another book, but I don’t recall reading it in Mere Christianity

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Re: C.S. Lewis - Mere Christianity

Post by Og3 » Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:00 pm

marcuspnw wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 6:46 pm
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am

So with Conscience pointing to an intelligent creator, the argument is not that we have a conscience and that therefore there is a God who gave it to us -- THAT would be analogous to Newton's thumbs -- but that we have a conscience and we ought not to have. We ought to have a sense that whatever will help us is good and screw everyone else. And we see that in primitive defective minds: We call them sociopaths.

We can apply the hindsight bias and say, "Well, we have a conscience, therefore we clearly can develop one naturally without a God-given pattern" but this is begging the question. We believe that a conscience might develop through herd-instincts and similar survival of the group instincts, but this is backwards reasoning. Also, Lewis raises the point that there are times when our herd-instincts direct us one way, our survival instinct goes another, and it is the conscience, an over-riding tertium quid, which tells us which thing is best to do at that moment.

When SEG and I discussed it, we spoke of a sailor seeing an unconscious shipmate two decks below: Herd-instinct says to save the buddy; Survival instinct says to save oneself; and proper training -- what conscience knows is right because of training, that is -- tells us to alert others, don breathing apparatus, and to climb down in a well-organized rescue.

So it's not exactly the same as Newton observing that we have thumbs.
The question is do the behavioral traits express themselves over time through genetic adaptation to a fitness environment or were they hard-wired by a designer. I didn't expect him to dwell on this as his intent is to inform the readers of basic Christianity and believers assume that God created life regardless of His methods.
He seems to be trying to establish that Good and Evil are not just questions of relative moral orientation, but actual objective realities. And for that, he needs to establish his tertium quid that overrides both herd and survival instincts.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
Not to put words into Lewis' mouth, but when Lewis says that it is simple, he seems to mean simplistic. His point is that atheism rarely if ever addresses the meat of the faith; doctrine as it is held by informed adults who have carefully considered the proposition.

He says in the referenced passage that the atheist typically attacks a version of Christianity suitable for a six-year -old, and when a Christian in response explains the deep doctrines behind that simple version, and the reasoning behind those doctrines, the atheist then shouts that it's too complicated and that he cannot understand it; that it's dizzying and overly complex.

Well, we can't have it both ways. We can't oppose Christianity as simplistic but refuse to hear the deep doctrines.

And that is why he says that atheism is "too" simple: that is, too simplistic.
During most of his lifetime, the logical positivists in England were at their prime so he does make a valid criticism. In their view, there was simply no meat to address.
But I could say the same thing in a butcher's shop, if I stood in the doorway looking out at the street.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
Christians find the universe meaningful because of God; God and meaning, to a Christian, cannot be divorced. That the universe APPEARS meaningful is a sign of God, but it is only God who gives life meaning.

We do not mean that you cannot find fulfilling things to do; but ultimately, in a godless universe, those things are meaningless. You build a great skyscraper to be your legacy. Three weeks after you die, they tear it down to make a new freeway. You give to the poor. The next year a hurricane kills them all. You leave a fortune to your children. After you die, they spend it all on strippers and booze. Or worse, give it to a con man selling cheap bridges in Brooklyn.

When we come down to it, a universe without God is a random series of events. Tomorrow the earth might be struck by a random meteor and all of our fulfilling exploits might be so much dust plus a few curious artifacts on the moon. In such a universe, a person is just a gamete generator, producing another meaningless lump of DNA.

If that seems wrong -- if it feels like the universe has a meaning -- then you are feeling that there must exist something outside our universe that gives it meaning. Otherwise, death is the ultimate mockery of fulfillment and meaning in life. Do not ask if you "buy" it, do not ask if it's pessimistic. Ask if it's true or false. Does life as a whole have meaning, yes or no?
You are conflating meaning with permanence. Something can be meaningful and still be temporary. For example, teaching my child to ride a bicycle is still meaningful to both of us although it occurred in years past and is no longer necessary. However, I don’t miss the accompanying backache so permanence is not always a desirable quality.
We're talking about objective meaning. It was meaningful to you, subjectively, and to your son, subjectively. It might have some vague meaning to your grandchildren in the sense that Grandpa used to talk about teaching Dad to ride a bike. But your greats will shrug it off with a "Oh, yeah, okay..." and never give it a second thought. And if (God forbid) your relationship with your son should sour over time, then memories like that will cease to be meaningful. I can imagine a father (not you, let's say) so enraged by his son's actions that he regrets ever having begotten him, much less taught him to ride.

So that's not the answer, not the meaning. We're talking about the kind of questions that used to wake Tolstoy in the night: "Why are you here? What are you supposed to do? How do you justify living if you don't know why?"

So we are absolutely talking about permanence when we talk about meaning in life. I can't see Tolstoy waking up, hearing himself ask, "Is there a reason for you to be alive?" and responding, "Yes, I'm teaching my son to ride a bicycle." The answer doesn't fit the question.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
The problem is the method. Suppose that I am ten years old and wish to be an adult. I can start imitating adults around me -- smoking cigarettes, spending my days in office buildings, driving cars, living beyond my means, becoming involved in adult activities... Or I can follow the plan before me, going to school, growing into adult thinking, adult action, and adult responsibility over time. In one case, I'm likely to have any number of misfortunes interfere with my becoming an adult, or at least a proper adult as I am meant to be. In the other case, I'm likely to become the sort of adult that I have the potential to become.

We want to be like God in taking on responsibilities that we are not capable of handling, such as being our own arbiters of right and wrong, or trying to rule our own lives based on our own emotional whims -- things that we are not spiritually mature enough to handle.

God intends us to develop into "little Christs" by a gradual process of growth and development, in which we slowly but surely become more Christ-like over time. Paradoxically, to want to play God is to desire power without responsibility, but Christ modeled giving up power to take on responsibility. And that is where the cryptic sayings of the new testament come from: That the first shall be last and the last shall be first. We are most surely on our way to being like God when we become the servant of men -- remember Christ, washing the feet of lowly fishermen, a task relegated to the lowest of servants.

So wanting to become little gods on our own is a bad thing; wanting to become like Christ through the models of humility and meekness that he modeled is a good thing. Even though, as you correctly say, Jesus is God.

Well, I think what Lewis and you are trying to say is that the goal of being a little god/Christ is good but we can’t achieve this goal apart from accepting Jesus Christ as Lord. So there was a little truth when the serpent spoke although his intent was to deceive.
The best lies are half-truths. You might be interested in a book by Lewis called Perelandra, which deals with a sort of a serpent in the garden kind of theme.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
That's just the surface of the argument from desire. You see, the key premise is that every desire has a matching gratification. Every itch has a scratch; every hunger has food; every thirst has water. But for justice, or perfect love, or perfect joy -- for these desires there is not perfect analog. Not in this world. Which argues well, says Lewis, that we were made for a different universe.
Here I think Lewis is influenced in his thinking by Plato. For hunger, there is no perfect food and one will be hungry again. In fact, one can choose a variety of nourishment which will achieve the temporary goal of satiation. There is no one perfect food so why should there be one perfect love or joy or justice? Are we not well-made for the world in which we live? If so, then why should we think we are destined for a different one?
Lewis was in fact a Neo-Platonist, though I'm not sure he ever admitted it in so many words. The Last Battle seems to establish his Neo-platonist views rather solidly.

Also, Christ himself pointed out that earthly bread gives life only for a time ("Your fathers ate manna in the wilderness, and died"), and earthly thirst returns ("Who drinks of this water shall thirst again"). Thus his later statements, "I Am the bread of Life" and "If any man is thirsty, let him come to me" or "Who drinks of the water that I give shall never thirst again."

So Christ Himself seems to promote a Neo-Platonist view.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
Think of the universe as a book. You, the reader, are able to see the entire book at once. To you, the beginning and the end are only an inch or two apart. If you know the book well -- if perhaps it is a book that you wrote -- then you can possibly open it to any page and know both what is before and what is after, the end from the beginning, the thoughts and intents of the hearts of the characters.

If you are in that book, then you cannot know the end from the beginning; the arrow of time points one way, from page one to page 243. You know only what it has been ordained that you should know, and only on the page where it is ordained that you shall learn it. But the author is outside of your time. He is apart, separate; he knows the entire story, envisions the forest on the day the seeds fell there and on the day that the lumber is cut down. And it is possible because to him they have happened and are happening and will happen at the same moment, as an author sees the story all at once from a single vantage point.

So it makes perfect sense that the God who invented time would stand outside of time.

My criticism is that the analogy requires you to reintroduce God back into time and space and so isn’t a good example as an explanation of how God in not in time. If you have a book and you are reading, you can only do so in time. The words are written in sequence. Furthermore, you cannot read them without reading the words and letters in sequence. This takes time and space. Imagine the book is not written on paper and ink but etched in glass plates. Then, you can hold all the plates up at once. Now this gets you a little bit closer to the idea of “not in time”. However, you cannot make out any pattern. If all the etchings are reaching you simultaneously then there is no order and no decipherable book.
Every analogy breaks down at some point.
For God to hear your prayers, He must be experiencing time and space. Otherwise, your thoughts and utterances cannot be deciphered. Your thoughts require time for you to think them and for Him to receive them in an intelligible pattern.
Why? I do not have to be in the story of Tom Sawyer, reading it in time and space, to know that Tom and Becky will get out of the cave safely and that Injun Joe will not. I can imagine both the scene of Tom whitewashing the fence and the scene of Tom throwing dirt clods at Sid, and even riding his bicycle with his head on the seat to impress Becky, all at the same time. They are happening and will happen and have happened.
The knowledge of God revealed in scripture is that He is the alpha and omega. He is at the beginning and He is at the end. Also, throughout the ages of history, He is here. That’s as far as I am willing to go in explaining the Christian concept of God’s interaction with time.
and if I hold a book in my hand (or in my mind) I am at its beginning and its end; throughout all of its pages I am there.
I can’t imagine God standing outside of time without a dimension and a moment whereby I can place Him. Time and space keep creeping back into this idea. It’s baffling but then so is the idea of initial singularity.
I can't imagine quantum tunneling, except in very vague and inaccurate analogies. But it seems nonetheless to be real.
Og3 wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 6:37 am
Imagine a man who builds a robot, and also fathers a son. One of these is a creature -- made but not begotten -- and the other is a son, begotten and not made. The son contains a part of the father, and is made from the father's substance, and is like the father. The creature is an interpretation, and image of the father, perhaps, but not a part of the father.
But the word begotten infers that a father precedes a son but that is not the doctrine. My criticism is that he should have started with an introduction of the original Greek word of monogenes. This is a clearer (at least for me) starting point than the English translation of begotten which can easily lead to misunderstanding. Now I might have missed it or he could have addressed this in detail at another time or in another book, but I don’t recall reading it in Mere Christianity
In one sense, it is a point of doctrine that the Father begat the Son, though we are never told when or how. Certainly the Son is pre-eternal, and we are told that in the beginning He existed with God, that nothing was created without Him, and that He is literally the Word of God. So we are not given the detail of what exactly it means that the Son was begotten by the Father. But that should not be enough of a stumbling block to throw one off of the point.
EGO TE ABSOLVO, and there's nothing you can do about it.

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