Thursday, March 01, 2007

Some More Randomness

A friend whose blog I really should read more often I discovered today that he back in February posted on voting and such: one post is a reflection on voting the other is a posting of links to articles on our electoral process. When I do remember to read his blog I always find something thoughtful and thought provoking.

As you may have noticed, my day continues to be slow. I get a little bit of work and then wait. Time to think and post etc.

I think that perhaps the three things I posted on earlier may not be so random or unrelated. Pondering on them some more I realize that they all emerge out of a sense that Christianity and the Church needs to be articulated as its own thing, that the church exists to leaven the dough of culture, to be the salt of the world, that is the church is to at best transform (or be that through which God transforms) culture, the church should not be changed and transformed by culture.
This does not deny (as far as I am concerned) that The Gospel needs to be in some sense "inculturated", but rather it always give priority to the church and the Gospel over culture.

But then I have to admit all this talk of "culture" at times just seems like so much nonsense, and the invention (a very useful one, and one I love to play with)of anthropologists. This suspicion is root deep in my university education in which (at least in the 80 and early 90's) academics were fond of introducing a subject by showing how we have to assume so much about our subject matter including the existence of say something like culture to be able to begin but that we are unable to question whether or not something like culture actually exists, or more to the point can be defined in any truly critical way.

This is why I think the church should be skeptical about taking over as a guide for what it should think the any culture or the academy or science etc. This is not the statement of an anti-intellectual. Nor is it a defense of the rejection and trial and condemnation of Galileo nor of Evolution.

It seems to me that both the rejection and the constant attempt to adapt Christian thought and morality to the current academic opinion or scientific theories give too much to the academy and science, and do not recognize that the purpose of the church is not the purpose of the academy or science. That it is also fine and destroys nothing if from time to time church and science or church and culture say different even contradictory things.

I should remind everyone that I say this as someone who both accepts the theory of evolution and believes that God created everything and that that the first Chapters of Genesis tell us the truth about that creation of the world by God. It is the ability to hold all that together that I think is necessary to live truly as the church in the world.