Doctrine Débonnaires (#571)

When did Christianity become a religion more concerned about doctrinal conformity than it is helping people know, love and follow the living God? Knowledge about God and knowing God are two different things. Wayne and Brad discuss the growing divide between academic understanding about and personal engagement with him. This is not one or the other, but how do we treasure both? Knowing what's true about God is vitally important, but if we substitute that knowledge from God as a knowable reality in the creation we will tend toward arrogance and control, rather than love and humility. They also talk about the question as to whether God needs us, and how it is that we need him.

Podcast Notes:
Whose Afraid of the Big, Bad Shack, by Wayne
Am I a Christian, Pastor Timothy Keller?
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  1. I had the doctrine of living loved beyond works and striving. etc…, but have not known the reality of living loved. Wrestling that “reality” out is where I am at. I currently have some friends that do not pressure me and try to force feed me a dose of “truth and love” to get to the product of where they think I ought to be. However, I do have some well-meaning friends who want me to more or less force myself and will myself into right relationship with God. They encourage me to “trust god no matter what” and give a sacrifice of praise in the storm, etc… I am not there in that place….yet. And quite frankly, that place of willing myself into love and truth feels absolutely yucky and manipulative.
    I cannot, and do not think I will ever force feed myself “truth and knowledge” anymore. Living in the reality of where I am at and hopefully finding God showing up in that inner place again and again and again with His love and truth is where I am at. The inner life is what I am connecting with more and more and giving myself permission to feel and express and be authentic as a little child.

  2. I love this quote from back in the day: “A Pharisee thinks truth is more important than love. A follower of Christ knows that love is the most important part of truth.”

  3. I like the quote also. Finding the harmony and sweet spot of love being the most important part of truth, however, is the challenge.
    I often times experience truth from a Pharisee being impatient, judging, forceful, guilting, manipulative, condemning, shaming, dividing, etc… This is the opposite of love being patient, kind, quick to listen, gentle, compassionate, slow to speak, etc… I think the reality of pain, doubt, suffering, questions, etc… unnerves the Pharisee because they probably have not journeyed through their own soul to discover God showing up in the places of their own shame and fear. So maybe for the Pharisee, faith is some how a self-righteous garment to put on out of a fear and denial, covering and hiding the more authentic places of struggle and insecurity. This would leave the Pharisee denying oneself the chance of entering into a more authentic journey with God as a little child, and instead replacing this possible reality with more effort and works to make their way to God. I think becoming more like a little child depending on God to be much bigger than I could imagine takes more faith, than willing myself into truth through my own self-effort and knowledge.

  4. I watched the video, Joni. Good stuff! I have found my journey has intersected with Parker Palmer and things he has discovered frequently over the last 1 1/2 years.

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