Thursday, March 26, 2009

Cosmic Christology

Small step for man
Neil Anderson July 1969

LIFE hosted by Google

Space Age theology faces enormous challenges in bringing the Gospel about Jesus Christ to modern man. Our views about the universe in which we live have utterly changed from the times when Biblical scriptures were written down in the Near East. The change has not been easy and involves many sad chapters when Christians have fiercely opposed scientific discovery and new insights into our existence.

The purpose of this blog is to examine the impact of space research on the Judeo-Christian traditions based on the Bible and especially on our faith on Jesus Christ.

The address of Christ in the Universe

Let us assume that an imaginary Galactic traveller wanted to find Jesus Christ. His address would be something like this - using the names that we have ourselves given to the space objects in our vicinity:

Jesus Christ
Planet Earth
Rocky star no. 3
Solar system
Milky way Galaxy

In other words, the Bible is earth centred. In the time of prophets and apostles the human race assumed that earth equals the entire universe and sun, moon and stars circle on their paths on the sky above the earth. Yet, according to the Scriptures Jesus Christ is involved in the creation of everything - which for us modern people includes the entire cosmos, visible and invisible.

For by Him were all things created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions or principalities or powers: all things were created by Him and for Him.
Colossians 1:16

The Creation story in Genesis 1 begins with the making of heavens and earth. Green plants were made on the second day even before God had made the sun and the moon and the stars as light source for day and night and as a clockwork.

So how do we travel in time from this Ancient Near Eastern view of world and creation to modern times?

There are those who stick literally to the Scriptures, reject science and say that "Bible is God's word, the truth and nothing but the truth. Sooner or later we shall understand how science has again erred in going against the Holy Scriptures".

And there are those who give up the Biblical stories of creation and say "Holy Bible is not a textbook for natural history. The spiritual message is important and in Genesis we find the fundamental truth that God has created the universe and everything in it".

Both these views start to be outdated as school children learn about cosmos and are getting familiar with the concepts of galaxies and the enormous distances in the space.

Theology and Science of Religion
Theology tries to bring the message from the ancient Scriptures to the men and women living in today's world. Theology attempts to bridge the huge gap between ancient and modern world views. Science of Religion, on the other hand, uses scientific methods to study religions, including Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

However, although often seen in that way. Theology is not a branch of Science of Religion that concentrates on Christianity. Despite of overlapping methods there is a truly fundamental difference: ultimately, Theologians work from the unique viewpoint of Biblical faith. This is, of course, self-evident about Systematic Theology but it is also true of all the other branches of theological studies, as well.

The distinction is not easy to define and some think that because of such claims Theology is not an academic subject suitable for universities. By this criticism they show that they do not really understand Theology, which is one of the most accurate disciplines in the sphere of human thinking.

This blog

Anyone is invited to comment and expand on the themes presented in this blog. I am well aware of my limited knowledge of the deep subjects discussed here and readily admit that I may make factual mistakes more than I would like to.

This blog hopefully will have links to other blogs and web sites interested in the same subject so that there is a rich network of sites representing different points of view written in many different languages.

The site is not denominational. The purpose is not to discuss the many different doctrinal views that separate Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Coptic, Armenian, Protestant and other churches from each other. Rather, the site concentrates on the fundamentals of faith that unite all Christians who confess the Nicaian Creed.

Love of truth
There is a very basic principle in the Bible that should be emphasized: the love of truth.

This is something that God wants to give as a free present. It is not something secondary or an embellishment of our faith in Christ. It is so essential, that God allows great lies to fill the earth that all those who did not accept the love of truth would go astray, if possible even the elect.

Second Thessalonicians is among the oldest writings in the New Testament. Apostle Paul warns the Christians in that city:

Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?

And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.

And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:

Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

2 Th 2:5-10 KJVA

A note on the Bible that I am using.

There is a great number of excellent Bible versions and search engines available in the Web. However, the e-Sword desktop Bible is very handy because of the many useful study tools built into it, the ability to quickly switch between translations, the Hebrew, Greek and Latin texts and very efficient search that picks verses in the current selected language.

It is quite amazing that Rick Meyers has been able to create this system and to maintain it and to provide the service freely to all around the world. May God bless him and his family and all those who have submitted Bible translations to this service!

Especailly I like Rick's mottofrom Matthew 10:8 "Freely you received, freely give"

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