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Sunday, November 7, 2010

Does God Exist 2: What Kind of God

Oct 29 in Does God Exist 1 Suzan (my sister) left a comment which nailed the central issue. I want to begin wrestling with that today!

We have looked at the thinking-feeling-willing components of saying "I believe in God." In summary, the word "believe" has different shades of meaning. Today a new direction, the word "God" also has different shades of meaning! I thought about doing some comparative religion work here, but honestly think it is beyond my reach. However, a comment about what I am doing in this blog appeared in Facebook some time ago. I so want to address that.

"All Christians and Muslims are on the same path as I see it" was the comment. My response: It is probably true that is the way he sees it. However, it is probably not the way most people see it, especially people who know much about Islam and Christianity. Perhaps it is snarky to suggest that the commenter move to Muslim countries and spend a few years trying to preach that message at the local mosques. My guess is he would quickly learn that there are many Muslims who strongly (even violently) reject such beliefs.

In fairness, the word 'path' can simply meaning "seeking God" and in that case I do think it is true. I think it is fair to consider Christianity a world religion. (I know some Christians do not) It is certainly helpful to discuss Christianity in terms which could similarly be addressed to Muslims (revelation, worship, ethics, etc.). But where the commenter is totally wrong is Christianity is on the path named Jesus. Jesus said, "I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except by Me." Islam condemns the Chrisian belief in the Trinity as polytheism. Calling Jesus divine is blasphemous to them. What we say about God is not the same and there is a sense in which we worship different Gods. With the reminder from Suzan, that "any God small enough for me to understand is not big enough to be God", we will look at some pointers to what kind of God Christians believe in. Fortunately, we are not alone in this quest. Others go before us marked with the sign of faith!

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