IS OUR THEOLOGY IMPORTANT TO GOD?

After I had a little debate with Jim, I decided to check out his website, Not For Itching Ears | Calling the Church Back to The Cross. In the process I checked out his latest post, God Doesn’t Care About Your Theology? | Not For Itching Ears. Jim‘s title overstates his argument a bit. What concerns him are the divisions caused by the doctrinal differences between different Christian denominations. Consider this excerpt.

It matters to us, but does it matter to God?

This brings me back to my conversation with my friend. Obviously, the doctrinal differences we’ve killed others for matter to us. They are a big deal. But do they matter to God? Personally, I don’t think so.

Before you get the kindling and tie me to the stake consider what I’m NOT saying. I’m not saying that God doesn’t care about the Gospel or the church, or the world of lost souls. He does. But our petty little arguments?

God Doesn’t Care About Your Theology? | Not For Itching Ears

What bothers Jim is the fact Christians argue, fight and separate themselves because of their theological differences. Is Jim right? Are we foolish to make our theological differences so important? I think the answer is both yes and no. If we consider the definition of theology, then it become obvious that we cannot just ignore our theological differences.

Let’s look at the primary definition of theology.

Definition of theology

1: the study of religious faith, practice, and experience

especiallythe study of God and of God’s relation to the world

Theology | Definition of Theology by Merriam-Webster (merriam-webster.com)

Think about the fact that the definition of theology primarily concerns the study of God and His relationship to us. What makes different religions different? Is it not each religious belief different because each religion defines God differently, including God’s relationship to us? Because each religion, be it Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist, Christian, Jewish, Pagan, and so forth, defines God and His relationship to us differently, each religion strives to love, worship and obey God differently.

Of course, Jim was just talking about differences between different Christian denominations, right? Those differences are not so big and substantial, are they? Well, they were serious enough to split the Orthodox Church from the Roman Catholic Church, and they were serious enough to kick off the Protestant Reformation, an event which led to terrible religious persecution and wars. Why? Different Christian denominations still define God differently, and they define God’s relationship to us differently. Different Christian denominations — different men — teach different things about what it means to know God and obey God.

God has given us His Bible. Almost all Christians use very similar Bibles, varying translations of the same original documents. If we want to resolve our divisions, Jim‘s complaint, then we need to use our Bibles. We won’t all agree about what we think the Bible tells us about God, but we will at least be using the same source and not some eloquent fellow’s interpretation of Holy Scripture.

Remember. The Bible does call upon some of us to be teachers, but whoever teaches has a great responsibility to get it right.

James 3:1 New American Standard Bible

Do not become teachers in large numbers, my brothers, since you know that we who are teachers will incur a [a]stricter judgment.

When I presume to teach on this blog, I don’t especially like being corrected, but allowing myself to be corrected is most certainly better than incurring a stricter judgement.

Does the Bible say theology is unimportant?

Jeremiah 9:23-24 New American Standard Bible

23 This is what the Lord says: “Let no wise man boast of his wisdom, nor let the mighty man boast of his might, nor a rich man boast of his riches; 24 but let the one who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord who exercises [a]mercy, justice, and righteousness on the earth; for I delight in these things,” declares the Lord.

Think about the way Jeremiah speaks of boasting. It is not about lording over others. Instead, we boast in the Lord by displaying His character, His mercy, His justice, and His righteousness.

When we study our Bibles, we learn about God. So, consider other parts of the Bible that speak of boasting in the Lord.

Theology is about knowing who God is. To put God first in our lives, we must first learn who God is. That is the point of the picture above. Before he could put God first for the rest of his life, the Apostle Thomas had to know God.

One last thought. Are our divisions necessarily bad? No. Not if we all seek to follow the example of our Lord Jesus. Consider an old proverb.

Proverbs 27:17 New American Standard Bible

17 As iron sharpens iron,

So one person sharpens another.

We don’t have to use our differences as an excuse to hate each other. Instead, we can see them as an opportunity to sharpen each other. Thus, I use Jim‘s complaint as an opportunity to dig into scripture, and I hope he does the same.

Additional References

Here are a couple of videos that R. C. Sproul put together.

44 thoughts on “IS OUR THEOLOGY IMPORTANT TO GOD?

  1. Your last paragraph…..I agree 100%. That time may be closer than we think. When that happens, we wont be debating the finer points of monergism vs synergism or anything like that. We’ll just be trying to follow Christ and sharing His message. Those are the issues that matter most to God.

    Still, what do you think Paul meant when he said….”What does it matter?”

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    1. Hey Slim, my question wasn’t “Does theology matter?” Of course it does. My question was about our in house fighting about theological issues. Do those fights matter as much to God as they matter to us?

      I don’t think so.

      Think of what Paul said to the Philippians:

      “The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice…” Phil 1:17-18

      “But what does it matter?”

      I’m not sure if this is Paul’s personal view or if he was sharing God’s view. But if it’s how the Father sees it? What seems to matter to him is that Christ is preached.

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      1. There’s a couple of points to touch here. St. Paul’s letters being Sacred Scripture are also authored by God being inspired text. It’s also important not to pull passages put of the context of the entire work, there needs to be a formal analysis of the text, who’s the author, to whom is he writing then working with a more detailed approach with the type of rhetorical devices Paul uses, the intertextual comparisons with other works, examining keys words, etc. The genre of the text is key too, Paul is writing true letters, reading letters is like listening to a phone call without being able to hear the other person, the sub-genre of a chapter or section needs to be addressed, and the form of the specific periscope.

        If we examine the letters of St. Paul, a lot of the domestic issues he’s addressing in the Corinthians letters (arguments against “super-Apostles” and the letter to the Galatians with the circumcision parties trying to persuade the Church of Galatia away from Paul’s gospel. In fact, in Paul’s letter to the Galatians he uses the justice branch of rhetoric because he is defending his theology by an apologia. Paul is concerned about Barnabas being led astray by Peter’s example in Galatians 2

        The letter of the Romans uses the discursive rhetoric device in attempt to persuade the Jewish community that it faith in the promise that justifies, not obedience to the law of Moses, the mark of circumcision is simply a sign of the faith which has already occurred.

        So, reading the text within the theme of the entire body of work of the letter it its genre format. And if the exegete reads the text as the inspired word of God, the proposition that differences in belief, how to worship God, how to pray, what is it that justifies etc. doesn’t matter is simply religious indifference, that is not supported by the biblical texts, especially in Pauline thought.

        That being said, when they round up Christians, will they care whether you’re a Catholic, Lutheran, Anglican, Methodist, Reformed Calvinist, Orthodox, etc. No. They probably only ask is Jesus Lord? And that confession will be enough.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. @Phillip

          That being said, when they round up Christians, will they care whether you’re a Catholic, Lutheran, Anglican, Methodist, Reformed Calvinist, Orthodox, etc. No. They probably only ask is Jesus Lord? And that confession will be enough.

          It has been that way before, and it seems to be that way now. The people who care the least about Christian theology are those who persecute Christians the most. All they need to know is who is your God. If it is not their God, that is all they need to know.

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      2. Well, I’m taking look at the Greek here and after “I am in chains.” The Greek reads, “ti gar.,” which literally means “What then?” English translations render it “What does it matter?”

        So, if we take this as a prison letter, written during Paul’s Rome imprisonment, the context falls into my last point, so perhaps, the strict context is under persecution and and martyrdom. If I was to make your exegetical argument, I would say that you would need to stress this point, but I don’t think Paul would claim that theology as a whole doesn’t matter.

        I’d have to take a look at the entire Philippians text, the periscope before and after this particular text. And examine more deeply this phrase and the context of the letter and its dating.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. That’s fair. It’s an intriguing question. Apparently, Paul and by extension, God the Father, don’t seem bothered if people preach the Gospel with bad motives etc.

          Or is your gut feeling telling you that isn’t what’s being said?

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Yes, but I could be wrong too. Little bit of background, I’m in my last year of Theology-Sacred Scripture, so I am being trained to be an exegete. The preliminary analysis of the text is simply to write out what you think is the context of the periscope. At that point, analysis takes place both introduction, formal, detailed, synthesis, reflection etc. Exegetes who believe scripture is the Living Word begin a conversation with the text and with the theologians that have before them because you can’t make the text say something that just isn’t there.

            My gut feeling based on Corinthian correspondence and Galatians is that Paul’s meaning is different than your analysis, but I’m open to being wrong or taking a nuance approach to your conclusion, that’s the method of exegesis.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Hey Phillip!

            I don’t think we have to do a structural diagram and word study to figure this out. Although, that would help. Let’s start by asking what those words meant to the Philippians? That’s the real question. How would they have understood it? It’s clear that Paul ISN’T talking about heretics within the church. He isn’t talking about the Judiazers. He has plenty of complaints against them. He isn’t talking about those outside the church. They don’t proclaim the Gospel. It sounds like Paul and the leaders knew these guys. So who is Paul taking about?

            He’s talking about believers, they’re the only ones left. Followers of Christ who, for whatever reason, don’t have the best motives when they preach Christ.

            But Paul, and by extension God (or is it the other way around?) thinks that doesn’t matter. What matters is that Christ is preached.

            If that’s even close to being the point, what does that mean for us today?

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          3. Except, exegesis requires all of the steps to be done. The same basic argument can be made about Colossians. Paul is speaking about “believers,” well some Scholars believe them to be Gnostics, but the author of Colossians still think correct theology is important. And you’re failing To acknowledge that we can easily see in Corinthians and Galatians that there’s some blurring between Judaism and the new movement The Way. Here’s San example, all of the undisputed letters of St. Paul assign things to God the father. The theology changes in Colossians and especially Ephesians with their more High Christology. The point being is that its not an easy read to decipher these letters and careful reading must take place. And quite frankly, your position the more I reflect on it with the other Pauline canon just doesn’t match the body of Paul’s work. You can’t base an entire development of a theological assertion based on Paul based on literally two Greek words, which are somewhat adapted into vernacular, as every translation is a work of exegesis.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. I’m fully aware of the steps of exegesis. I’m not saying you don’t have to do that if you’re going to teach this to a your congregation. I certainly would.

            Grab 12 different translations and read the passage. You’ll see that the gist of Paul’s point is the one I’m making. People are preaching the Gospel with less than pure motives, and Paul seems OK with it. The reason he’s ok with it is because the preaching of the Gospel is the thing that matters. That’s an obvious reading from the text. You don’t need a degree in theology to see that. At least I don’t need mine.

            I’ve enjoyed this conversation. Thanks Tom for letting it go on and on. Thanks Phillip for your willingness to engage the idea!

            Liked by 1 person

  2. Tom,

    I read your and Jim’s posts and I think that God does care about “Theology” what I think He does not care about is men arguing about it and interjecting their opinions into it (I believe the bible says or that’s just your opinion).

    I am not sure why folks read and interpret the bible differently. If we read it in original Greek and Hebrew, it is in most cases pretty clear-cut. We are as Paul said in 2 Tim 2:15, to study to show ourselves approved workman. That being said even with differences in basic Theology most times we have more in common than we think and in the preceding verse, Paul reminded everyone of this: Remind the people of these facts, and solemnly charge them in the presence of God to avoid petty controversy over words, which does no good, and [upsets and undermines and] ruins [the faith of] those who listen.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. @directorfsm

      Thank you for a thoughtful comment.

      BTW, your gravatar does not point to your website. So, you may wish to fix that.

      I was raised as a Catholic, but I decided that Christian theology, mostly because I had yet to read the Bible, did not make any sense. In my fifties, as I observed our country coming apart at the seams, I began to wonder what had ever held it together. So, I started reading classical literature. Since there is nothing more classic than the Bible, I read the Bible. Then I realized the Bible had to be true. I also realized that the commitment of so many Americans to the Bible had made the miracle of the American republic possible.

      Because it conflicts with their quest for power and their desire to “perfect” man, many of our ruling elites hate the Bible. So, they have used the public schools and the mass media to suppress the Bible and the truth about our history. Hence, confused by the continuous propaganda, people like Jim find themselves torn. Because our elites demand we believe that our religious differences, Christianity in particular, starts wars, we must not make to much of our theological differences. Meanwhile, the same people who think religion starts wars fear, utterly detest, and demonize Trump’s supporters. And why? They want to use the government to force their beliefs upon us, and we told them it is not right to use the government to force our beliefs upon each other.

      Are these conniving members of our elites hypocrites? Well, they are most certainly scheming liars.

      Anyway, I don’t think any Christian denomination perfectly understands the Bible. Is that a problem? I suppose so, but Jesus charged us with spreading the Gospel, not making other Christians perfect. We don’t apologize for being followers of Jesus Christ. Instead, we long for the day when we have learned to follow Jesus perfectly.

      What discipling people involves is encouraging converts to study the Bible and helping them to understand it. What discipling does not entail is making others think just like me. Our model is Jesus, and we achieve unity in Him.

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  3. Good points, Tom!

    You bring up a great example. God did intervene at Babel! And why did he intervene?
    He also intervened at Korah’s rebellion, to make sure everybody knew who His chosen leader was.

    He hasn’t intervened to make sure we have our Systematic Theology right. At the very least, I think that means we shouldn’t fight to the death over it.

    You mention competition. Do you think that’s why God allows all our disunity?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. @Jim

      I think God wants us to love each other, but He want us to love and becomes one with Him.

      So long as a church sees itself as part of the body of Christ, it can fulfill its mission and spread the Gospel, and that is happening.

      Our unity has to be in Christ, not an organization.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I agree. And practically, the emphasis is on loving each other. It’s easy to say one loves God. It’s a heck of a lot harder to actually treat other people the way he’s told us to.

        Put another way, it’s easier for me to study God, his word and his ways. It’s way more challenging to love my neighbor. 21st century Christians know enough about what God desires for his people. Further study isn’t what’s needed. It’s more application.

        That’s my view from the cheap seats.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. @Jim

          Put another way, it’s easier for me to study God, his word and his ways. It’s way more challenging to love my neighbor. 21st century Christians know enough about what God desires for his people. Further study isn’t what’s needed. It’s more application.

          I have a brother who could say something similar. The problem is that to discern the difference between good and evil we must have wisdom.

          There is a distinct difference between the way a Pagan would love his neighbors and a Christian should love his neighbors. The Christian applies Godly wisdom. He avoids evil, and he helps his neighbors avoid evil.

          Because the Bible teaches us to avoid evil, is easier to love our neighbors when we study God’s Word. If we don’t study the Bible, we soon lose track of the difference between good and evil.

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          1. I don’t disagree with that at all. We’d probably agree on this: it doesn’t take much biblical knowledge to understand what Jesus meant when he summarized everything down to two points.
            It’s not hard to understand what “love your neighbor as you love yourself” means.” But it is hard to do.
            I like the way the Didache states it: “Whatever you don’t want to be done to you, don’t do to another.”

            Liked by 1 person

          2. @Jim

            When Jesus summarized the Bible, He exhibited a profound understanding of it. The Bible is a rather complex work, but He got to the core of it with a few words. Nevertheless, think about this. To love God, we must know Him and what He wants from us. To love our neighbor, we must understand what we can do for him without harming him. That requires understanding and wisdom. How many people do you call wise?

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          3. It doesn’t take much wisdom to treat others the way you would want to be treated. Does it? You’re not saying loving your neighbor requires massive amounts of Systematic Theology are you? I don’t think you are. I also think we’re agree with each on this far more than we disagree.

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          4. @Jim

            You have to know what you are saying is untenable. Yet you are not the first I have heard to say such a thing. So, let’s think about what you are doing. Why do you find this notion, reducing the Bible to a single proverb, the Golden Rule, attractive?

            Are you are ridiculing Bible study? You don’t think we should study the Bible as much as we can? That’s is your position? No. I doubt that. However, it seems to me you don’t realize you are looking for an excuse to do what seems right in your own eyes. Not good!

            Here is the theme of the Book of Judges.

            Judges 17:6 New American Standard Bible

            6 In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.

            The Book of Judges is a horror story. How could that be? Proverbs 28 has a running theme that I think describes the problem. Here are a few lines.

            Proverbs 28:25-26 New American Standard Bible

            25 An [a]arrogant person stirs up strife,
            But one who trusts in the Lord will [b]prosper.
            26 One who trusts in his own heart is a fool,
            But one who walks wisely will flee to safety.

            What the Book of Judges illustrates is the truth of this proverb.

            Proverbs 3:5 New American Standard Bible

            5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart
            And do not lean on your own understanding.

            To trust in God we must know God. To know God, we must study what He has given us to know Him.

            2 Timothy 3:16-17 New American Standard Bible

            16 All Scripture is [a]inspired by God and beneficial for teaching, for [b]rebuke, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man or woman of God may be [c]fully capable, equipped for every good work.

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          5. Tom, I’m asking if God cares as much about our theology as we do. I think the answer is clearly that he doesn’t. I don’t think that’s untenable at all.

            Jesus is the one one who reduced it down to that. Not me.

            My approach to discussions is to find clarity, not agreement. I think I have that clarity with how you view theology. We don’t have to agree at all. But it was a great discussion. I appreciate you linking to my post.

            Liked by 1 person

          6. @Jim

            The Bible is theology. We are supposed to study it. The mission of church is to make disciples, Matthew 28:11-20. Ephesians 4:11-16 gives a brief description of what that entails. Hebrews 5:11-6:3 make it clear that we must progress in our understanding of theology.

            So, yes. God wants us to know Him.

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          7. With that we’re in 100% agreement. God does want us to know him.

            The mission of the church is to make disciples AND teach them to obey everything Jesus commanded. I don’t know why we always leave that part out. But it’s a big part. Right?

            Here’s where we disagree. Correct me if any of this is wrong:

            You think God cares a LOT about our different perspectives on Him and His ways. I don’t.

            You believe that studying theology is equally important as following Christ’s commands. I don’t.

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          8. @Jim

            I believe God commands us to love Him, and that includes trying to understand Him as best we can.

            The mission of the church is to make disciples AND teach them to obey everything Jesus commanded. I don’t know why we always leave that part out. But it’s a big part. Right?

            To become disciples of Jesus, we must strive to learn what He taught. When we become Jesus’ disciples, as the apostles did, we must also become His imitators. As He did, we must do our best to disciple others. If nothing else, we must at least try to disciple our children. How can anyone disciple another in the teachings of Jesus without knowing at least something about the Bible?

            As disciples of Jesus, do we have differences? Yes. Does God care a lot about our different perspectives on Him and His ways? Well, He is responsible for our differences. He made us different.

            God is completely sovereign. Nothing happens that He does not make happen or permit to happen. When God made each of us different and unique human beings, He created a situation where we would have different point-of-views, different biases, actually think differently, and so forth. So it is that no two of us read the Bible and come away believing the same things about God. Because we are different, we perceive Creation differently. So we perceive God and what He wants from us differently.

            What should we do about our differences? Should we think of our differences as being good or bad? For the most part, I think our differences desirable. Consider how it helps us to deal with the problem with pride. The proud and haughty think no one matters except themselves. Whereas the humble and poor in spirit realize that other people have value, that what others believe has significance. Because the humble are willing to listen and take the opinions of others seriously, they can gain new perspectives and a better understanding of the nature of God and His Creation. The proud, on the other hand, even though they may be brilliant, can never reach their full potential until they surrender their pride. Because they are unwilling to perceive God and His creation from any perspective except their own, they must almost inevitably remain mere scoffers, doubting and even denying the existence of God.

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          9. On my part, I don’t make a big deal about our differences. But, I think I’m in the minority when it comes to theological differences. It doesn’t bother if people see things differently than I do.

            The only reason I keep coming back with you, is you seem to be missing my point. I’m not trying to change your view. At this point, I’m trying to clarify what your view is. I asked you two direct questions to help clarify our positions and you didn’t answer those questions. But you answered a question I haven’t asked. Nothing I’ve said at any point in either of our two conversations has been against reading the Bible.

            Doesn’t God’s sovereignty on this issue make you wonder why he has allowed it? My thoughts? He doesn’t care if you believe in speaking in tongues or if you follow Calvin, Arminius, Luther or our brothers from the East.

            Liked by 1 person

          10. @Jim

            Why did God in His sovereignty make each of us unique? My guess is that arises from the fact that each of us is finite, and He is infinite. We each were created to created to appreciate a different aspect of our Lord.

            Sometimes we are so different we don’t communicate well. What two questions?

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  4. Hey Tom! Thanks for following my blog and engaging with my post. I enjoyed your take on it.

    If you spend any time reading my stuff over at NotForItchingEars, you’ll see I LOVE the study of God. I’ve spent a lifetime pursuing it. It matter to others and it most certainly matters to me.

    But that’s not the question I wrestle with. The question that’s often at the forefront of my mind is “does our theology matter to God?” And I’m not so sure it does.

    I shared my reasoning for that on my blog. But the gist of it is that He never intervened miraculously. Not to stop the East/West split. Not to stop the Reformation. If God knows all things, then he knew the absolute mess that would happen if he did nothing. And he did nothing.

    The nagging question I have about that is why? Why didn’t he intervene? I wrote that post to see what thoughts other people had on the subject. But like most of my posts, there wasn’t much engagement!

    Why do you think he didn’t intervene?

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    1. @Jim

      God wants us to know Him. If you want someone to know you, don’t you want them to study Jimology?

      Think about what happened when God did intervene. What happened when mankind was unified? We built the Tower of Babel. We were unified in the belief we did not need God.

      Disunity results in competition. Competition lead us to seek a Savior. Competition leads us to the realization that we need God.

      Consider what many expect to happen during The Tribulation. One world government. One world religion.

      Instead worrying about church unity, I think we need to focus on bringing people to Jesus and being one with Him. If we are one with Him, that is all that matters.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Hi Jim.
      I’ve never studied theology.
      I’m not even a good or devout Christian but I will try to answer your question from a logical point of view.
      There is a logical error in your thinking. If we think about it, there are all kinds of horrible things that God did allow to happen and still allows to happen without performing miracles to prevent them from happening.
      It is therefore wrong to infer from the absence of miracles that something does not matter to God.
      Nothing could be further from the truth that God does not care about soemething if he does not interfere miraculously.
      Rest assured that every person that perished in the slaughter of the holocaust mattered a great deal to God.
      Why does God allow these horrible things to happen?
      At first glance the answer seems paradoxical. The answer is: God lets evil things happen because He loves us. God could have made us in such a way that we cannot do evil. but that would make us beings without any freedom.
      God loves us so much that he gave us the greatest of all gifts: freedom.
      All of God’s commandments make only sense if we are free to choose to not follow them.
      Without freedom of choice God’s commandments would be totally unnecessary.
      Never mind that we could never be able to love God, which is the highest commandment.
      You cannot force someone to love anything. Freedom of choice is the necessary condition for love.
      By giving us freedom God makes it possible that we make the wrong choices, which includes the choice of a crappy theology.
      This however is more than outweighed by the fact that we can experience love, that we can love and be loved.
      I seriously doubt that God’s miracles would prevent people from choosing the wrong theology.
      How did all the miracles for the people of Israel turn out?
      How did God’s direct orders to Adam and Eve turn out?

      Liked by 3 people

      1. You’re right. The absence of God intervening isn’t proof of anything. But, it raises questions. He HAS intervened before, at critical points in history. The cross being the most significant, but not the only place. If the theological purity of His church matters to him, why do nothing?

        There are no conclusive answers. I have several thoughts on the possible reason. But, at this point, I doubt he cares much about our in house theological squabbles.

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        1. Jim,
          I still don’t find your argument convincing for the reasons I stated. If God doesn’t intervene to prevent all the bad stuff that is happening right now from happening, should I conclude that God doesn’t care? Not reasonable and not logical.
          Furthermore, it is impossible for any human being to achieve theological purity.
          The reason for this is obvious. If you have ever written a user manual you will understand.
          Readers of the manual have questions about things that you think you have explained in a perfectly clear manner.
          Leaving aside those who would intentionally pervert even the clearest explanation, there will always be questions that you could have never imagined and there will always be some room for interpretation.but just as the writer of a user manual for a transistor radio would not want us to use the radio as a detonating device I believe that God does care about theology.
          The fact that there is room for interpretation is not due to some limitation of God. It’s because God knows OUR limitation.
          God could have given us scripture(s) that answers all possible questions for all possible situations for all possible times but then you would have a bible with billions and billions if not an infinite number of pages. Easy for God to do but impossible for us to read and understand.
          The only one who can be theologically pure is God himself.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. It’s not illogical to look at the world and conclude that God doesn’t care about what’s happening in it. People do that all day long. To conclude he does care about it, in spite of how messed up it is, requires more information and faith. So my hypothesis that he may not care about our theological fights as much as we do isn’t illogical at all. Of course, it could be a wrong conclusion. That’s not the same thing.

            I agree with you that I haven’t proven the argument. I haven’t even proven it to myself. It’s still just a hunch, but I’m leaning that way.

            Do you think the Apostle Paul was sharing his personal views on the matter In Philippians 1? Or do you think he was sharing God’s view? I’m undecided:

            “The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice…” Phil 1:17-18

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          2. @Jim
            You said: “It’s not illogical to look at the world and conclude that God doesn’t care about what’s happening in it. People do that all day long. To conclude he does care about it, in spite of how messed up it is, requires more information and faith. ”

            It is illogical because it doesn’t follow logically that God doesn’t care about a situation when he does not interfere to change that situation.
            It does not follow logically because there can be multiple possible reasons why God chooses not to interfere.
            If God’s indifference was the ONLY possible reason for His non-intervention, then yes, then it would be logical.
            When God let His Son suffer on the cross, did He not care about the Son or did He have a very good reason to not interfere?
            What people do all day long is irrelevant. The reaction is totally understandable and I had that reaction too but it is an emotional reaction and not a logical one.
            We have all the information we need to conclude that God does care about the state of the world.
            If we are talking about the same God who gave us the ten commandments and who so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son then it is much more reasonable to believe that he cares about the world.
            To conclude that he does not care would be inconsistent with His nature.
            If you want to talk about a different God, that’s another story.
            By now it should be obvious, that there is a logical error in your thinking.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. @Jim

            God is sovereign, completely and totally sovereign. If He had made them possible, we would not be having any debates.

            Think about Roman 8:28.

            Romans 8:28 English Standard Version
            28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

            All things, even the most seemingly foolish things, in the end serve a good purpose. But how? More often than we would like to admit we have no idea.

            Like

          4. And I’ll add, we’ll have to agree to disagree on that one as brothers in Christ.

            I’d love to know where you stand on the question. Does God care about our theological debates/ positions as much or even more than we do? Yes, No or unknown? A simple one-word answer is acceptable.

            Liked by 1 person

  5. Tom.

    Your post subject reminded me of the same topic of discussion centuries ago in the USA. I liked this explanation.

    “The Great Spirit is not one that can tear the two people apart but ultimately unite them in their ability to peacefully coexist.” – Red Jacket

    Source 6/14/2014

    King Solomon, Pope Francis, and Red Jacket, Blood brothers? – Rudy u Martinka (rudymartinka.com)

    Regards and goodwill blogging

    Liked by 2 people

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