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THE MISSION OF MEANING
Here is a Design Panorama:
Co-ordinated Tissue of Symbolics
Mentality of Meaning
and the GOD OF CREATION
It is time to break with the evil traditions of obscurantism and to find new relish in the realities of power, person and practicalities.
Look at life. It has a number of features of symbolic, sequential, significant and unique formulation. The power to formulate concerning life is in itself an exhibit of the power of formulation within it. You cannot have rational, reasonable, symbolic, conceptual, co-ordinated access to a realm, sphere, operational medium by a means foreign to its construction, or by constrictions alien to its nature.
What is conceptually investigable with explicatory unbinding, is conceptually originated, with implicatory binding. It is impossible to find empirically anything contrary to this, as distinct from hijacking dreams, product of impossible philosophies, never seen in practice, never given ground in reason.
If you find evidences accessible to reason, so that this cause and that effect are situated in multiple profusion, one after the other, in time and sequence, order and according to known laws, giving answers to mysteries, and if these things are each one, internally verified as having a certain mode of working, and together, certain methods of integral co-ordination, then in scientific method, you do not conclude that none of these things were operative. If further, you expressly work out experiments to show that the elements in the expository order, each one of them, does in fact under relevant conditions act and react in the mode brought to mind, then the thing is considered against any lesser composition of thought or conclusion concerning the matter, to have taken the field.
You do not ignore the experimentation. You do not invent limits never found. You do not inject features incapable of expressing themselves. You do not invent laws or controls never found. That is the mode of looking at things in the status quo.
If further, you never find information inventing itself, conceptually compressed, symbolically expressed, or comprehensively co-ordinated data suitable for mind and working in that modality, then you do not conclude that these things are irrelevant, since this is their status of matrix and mode of operation. If nothing that does the same is known or found, or featurable empirically, you do not imagine what is of that kind product of imagination in erratic frequency, but work with the known kind, because its features suffer exemplification and are logically in order.
That too, it is the nature of scientific method.
It is also necessary logic. You may always IMAGINE something more, never anything less. Capability is the first consideration; operation is the second. Both are necessary. Non-causal worlds are a contradiction in terms, since thought itself involves criteria and characterisability which involves conception tied symbolically to operation, and organic arrangements of verbal symbols in correlation with functional reality. Even imagination, which does not need to be tested in its own domain, when it sallies forth into the world of practical empirics, has the discipline of what is capable of doing the thing in view, and what is capable of testing.
Imagine now that we see the nature of life and thought and person and meaning and concept and verbal symbolism and articulated, sequential coded control, and say, Thought is illusion (therefore the thought that thought is illusion is illusory, so that this is simple contradiction in terms), and all that matters is what happens (but thought happens, another self-contradiction), so that it is wrong to look for causal considerations and testable matters when giving account of life. It does what it does and there is no ground for any of it. Such is the oration of intellectual nullity.
If however there is no ground for any of life, and this is known, and it is known by reasonable means, then the 'reason' that says so is itself groundless. Life is what we are exhibiting; groundless, its mode of operation is not susceptible to reason. Hence reasoning concerning it is unreasonable and void at the outset.
When however we return to testable reason and operational minima for man in his thinking, surveying and inveighing, we have to look for what is to be found, for operation, and what is not to be found, in assessing its nature and capacities concerning origin.
What is found is this: that reason MUST be satisfied if reason is to be used. You cannot in RATIONAL simultaneity do two things: namely, make use of reason to establish your case and disestablish reason as part of your case. If then there is to be reasonable discussion, the validity of reason is a pre-condition. The experimental verification of this point is found when not merely the negative, self-contradiction, is removed, but the positive is found, that is the result of deploying reason in the field of origins, using the field of the empirical on the way, to find what happens and what does not. That is, as we shall see in a little, just what is the case.
Thus hierarchical systematics, such as are found in life, and we shall move on to man as our example of convenience, is not a product of its absence in control. You do not find interlocking systems of symbolic kind, such that one REQUIRES the other for its operation, and EACH has its own integral operation with which it must meld with the other for the total result in empirical reality, created without mind. It is not to be found, not to be seen, not possessed of grounds of operation: the empirical and the cognitive agree. Only dreams do not.
One system of symbolic measure requires systematisation. It does not arrive without reason. Systematisation of symbols requires knowledge of meanings. Symbols are in the matrix of meaning: this is their soul, point and purpose, programmatic medium. They REFER to something which is not themselves. They INHERE in what is a tissue of meaning, of which they are not only an illustration, but a component. Their milieu is not merely one-code to one-object, but a multiplicity of symbolism in a SYSTEM of meanings, where not only the thing signified matters, or the thing that signifies, but the MODE of signification. There is symbolic semantics as well as symbolic signification.
When in addition you have a lead code, which provides modes of working, information to a receptor code, as in information DNA (formerly in the ludicrously misnamed 'junk' DNA category*1), then you have two systems of coherent, correlative meanings. The one as above, has its own cohesion of meanings, and the other as a feeder code, has its cohesive controls of modalities for meanings, how information is to be deployed, and this is BY an information of specialised kind for such purposes. Information about information dynamics and working (their 'meaning' modes) is not derivative from what is then meaningless code, nor does it derive it from itself, since it is an instructive format for what is taken for granted, the receptor of its directions.
We now are entering more than a multiplicity of meaning in symbolic form; we turn to a multiplicity of meaning modes in symbolic form. Symbols about symbols, meanings about meanings now represents the field. We are in other words, embraced in a complexity of the nature of symbol-meaning-operation of a multiple and mutually invested kind. Without the information about information, the information so deprived is useless; without the field for the application of the information about information, the information to inform is useless. Without the meaningful presentation and assessment of the symbols conveying meaning, both are useless. You need all three elements for the effective configuration found in DNA life.
There are three co-ordinated fields of information, one more directive and one more operative; but each operates and both co-operate. Each requires the other. All are implicit in each other. This is a multiplied situation for causality to investigate.
When meanings are specified for the manipulation of meanings we have a dictionary type situation, a control co-ordination and a conspectus of concepts, for meanings are concepts in a milieu of systematic interpretation modes, as in semantic symbolism, the implicit and the operative. We need then the cause of meanings, of semantic manipulation and forms for meanings, the correlation of actualisation with the meanings, for cognition is only part of operation, the actual DOING is needed. For this we also require the materials, and not only their availability in time and place formation, for the purposes of the meaning execution, but the orders with their power recognition, interpretation and performance.
We have thus material-time-place-sequence-meaning-symbol-semantics-organisation-orientation in an ascending scale of necessities since magic is not in mind: pleasant as magic for children, but they DO have to grow up when examining the real world. Unreal worlds can be fun, but their confusion with reality is not funny. It is exceedingly dangerous, and for a child to fail to distinguish could, for example lead to a fatal motor accident very readily. Adults are not immune in their own domain. It is necessary to be realistic.
To inject meaning into something is a mental operation. It may use a material conveyor mechanism or mode of any kind. However once you distinguish the MODE of insertion from WHAT is inserted, you are in the mental realm. This is how it operates. Its causality is one of meaning, method and injection, and on the other hand, reception, symbolic operation and retention. Matter gives neither sign nor signal, neither method nor performance of this kind. It is under orders, but does not originate information for this purpose. Mind does, but what sort of mind is needed for this! We shall investigate to see.
Thus what is inserted, the information, the meaning, this is a mental phenomenon. It involves first of all CAPACITY to make symbols, a symbol-thing correlation, then power to put them in semantic harness, so that what they signify is not a meaningless atom of floating meaning, like a dead branch in a sea, but an integrable part of an operative totality. That is meaning-in-action. Life involves action. It is not a theory. It happens.
Meaning with its symbolic utterance and semantic milieu, is a forged thing. It involves symbolic mastery, situational knowledge and semantic aptitude to become operable. The plotting of symbol against meaning is a conceptual affair. It requires understanding of the meaning of symbols, as an art form, and of the point of each one as an empirical assignation. Meaning has no meaning unless it is meant. Concepts are the mode for meaning. You have to conceive - conception has to occur - before meaning can be assigned. Meaning is a mental phenomenon, and its assignation is another one. Correlation of both aspects is a part of the totality of operational meaning. Life is not least, operational meaning. It involves conceptualisation, assignation, orientation and operation.
To have this happen, conceptualisation is required, explicit in the actions of a person, or implicit in the programmatics which require the same tissue of causality. It is a mental phase that we are considering. It might be GREATER than this, in its origin, but it cannot be less.
This mental phase in turn has a purpose basis. Meanings assigned and semantics invented are determinable events. They require determination. They represent choice and imposition. This implies purpose. Purpose implies person. The person may be greater than our own depiction of it in mankind, as mankind, but it cannot be less. We are not speaking of jolts of something interpretable, like jars in an aircraft's course from air current suddenly arriving; but of a series and sequence of meanings symbolically invented, meaningfully oriented and integrally holding convention with means of performance, impressing themselves on the latter in a timely and ordered, organised and operational manner.
This is the realm of hierarchical conceptuality. There is the concept of purpose and that of imagination (both to conceive purpose and to conceive the modes for its implementation), with that of wit and wisdom significantly operative. That is the realm of person as a minimum.
Life is personally produced. Its modes and matrix, systems and hierarchy of holistic performance modes require nothing less. What operates in these fields is of this kind and not of that. Integrality, conceptuality, interpretability (direct or indirect in mode), correlativity, meaning, semantic tissue, all are required, direct product of mind and person.
On the negative side, you could LOOK for matter in itself, thinking, for material matrix conceiving itself and so on; but you do not find it. It is not of this kind, does not evince these characteristics and that is why we call it matter, and the other that uses it, mind; and what has the power to do this, we denote as mentality. Moreover, what has the power to use mind to achieve purpose is given a name, spirit. The terms are not in themselves vital, so long as their definitions are known. This is a long-standing norm, the facts are long-standing facts. No imagination will alter either. They work together in explicatory form.
Thus we are in the realm of the mentality of meanings, the co-ordinated tissue of symbolism, of hierarchical systematics, both mental and material in practical implication, and of multi-coded conceptuality. That is one phase of life implicative in the power required for it.
There is of course much more than this required. The whole domain of chemistry, first, and then bio-chemistry (we are speaking logically, not chronologically here) is merely one area for institution, not by nothing, since this is by definition in all things inoperative, both in actuality and potentiality. Potential is not nothing. It is by something sufficient. Nothing is without entity-ship, power or potential, and nothing comes from it.
That is what reason requires. It is moreover something in particular sufficient, that is required logically, and not a dysfunctional. Operation is to the point . Otherwise it has no causal and so no rational basis (cf. Causes, SMR Ch. 5, Predestination and Freewill).
To this, the whole domain of physics has to be added, since chemical mobility involves the laws of the realm, such as concern atoms and protons and neutrons and electrons, expressive in combinations in elements and compounds, and these involve the considerations of the realm of matter and the phases of that realm, chemical, physical, engineering and sequential, indeed the correlation of all of these, a master art.
To that, the whole domain of control must be added, so that what is made, continues, and realms sent into operational actuality, proceed coherently in terms of their comprehension and distribution of dynamics, along the lines of their institution. If they did not, we could not codify them.
To that, the foundations of mentality have to be added, what makes it a realm of meaning and to posses the practical power to assign meaning to material in order to invent mentally sought, materially wrought results.
We could go on and on, for life involves a massive myriad of operational realities combined and controlled, indeed subjected to orders, so that the physical aspect can BE, together with the mental powers so that it can be UNDERSTOOD in various aspects, and the PURPOSIVE capacity, so that one can formulate and operate with purpose of apprehension and comprehension in MIND. This in turn requires the 'one' (which Hume so forget in his unsystematic systematics - that is, marred endeavours cf. SMR pp. 262ff,). This one (person) has to 'have' mind and imagination and to be capable of purpose and deciding whether to have it or not, since purpose is a deployment not of a symbol, but of a power, and without oversight, it could 'happen' anywhere and in any way. This however is anti-systematic while life is ultimate system.
This statement is in reference to its physical aspect, first of all, but we must pursue the supervening realities. Mentally, life USES system, semantics, operational symbolism, and physical responsiveness to mental machination, to actualise purpose (we are dealing we man for convenience, one will recall). There are fields of operation, each distinct, decisive and necessary for life at this level. They are at the lowest level, the least commanding,
the material, then
the organic which disposes material for unitary
operation as a system overall,
the bodily which is the summit of this system,
the mental, as we pursue the cockpit
of dirigible dynamic in operation, with
the conceptual, a concentrate and
calling into power of much subordinate, this with
the imaginative and the contrived, and
the spiritual, with the purposive, the selective, the elective and the orientational, for example.
These have to be conjoined in an integration of co-operation at their various levels, in a hierarchical fashion, in ascending order of impact, yet without total subordination -as in the case of indigestion, physical or mental. Nevertheless, this is their mode, their field of labour and their imposed orientation. Not uncaused, each has a facility, this while an integral overall correlation of components in such assignation of role and ascent of capacity and control is operative. To achieve each phase, and the underlying mechanics and systems for it, and the co-ordination of phases and meanings with symbols, and the power to symbolise and apply symbols, and to choose to do so, involves a refinement of method, a mastery of mind and a purposive thrust of spirit.
Since man, who has in generic form, some of these powers, even though he cannot in absentia as it were, without life being a GIVEN THING, create matter or mind (that is without using what is there already as a basis and consignment present at the outset), let alone spirit: it is not he who is the origin. He cannot even do it now... he cannot yet do what needed to be done so that he could 'arrive'.
We look therefore beyond all known systems which have required the operative capacities noted, which in generic form are in terms of known vocabulary (our own verbal systematics in semantic formulation) called creation. Man is himself a recipient of creativity as well as an exposition of it. He is indeed both exponent and exposition of creativity, a creative created being.
What is the name of the creativity which created man in his own creativity ?
It is not man.
It is not matter.
It is not mind.
These operate in themselves. We are looking at the genesis of each operator, not its continuing capacities as granted.
The highest of our assemblages, that is, the most overall in its disposition and capacity to dispose, is spirit. That, with all the rest as above, is the least required to achieve the totality of the result.
The word "GOD" is used of such a spirit which is not man, not matter, not mind, but capable of using mind and investing matter with existence - that is, creating it, as we create thought or make new materials WITH materials already there AND thought AND purpose AND imagination. The nature of God is then the question. There is no less than these causative powers required. This is not the limit, but the exclusion barrier.
If He were a resultant, scientifically (science is not limited to matter, except by desire, which being a purpose, is merely an isolation of interest) and logically, He would need a cause. If there were endless mutually operative causes, this is what is known as infinite regress. This would leave unmet, the rational need for a cause of the causally inclined system and the correlativies involved in the imaginary sequence. For this, you need what is uncaused in such serial systematics.
If causality is always there, then you have no cause for it. If you start with what is needed by assuming it, you are begging the question. That is neither scientific nor rational.
It is logically necessary to find the cause of what causes, of causality. It may be urged that this is a contradiction in terms, but it is not so. To say that a thing is uncaused would be so WITHIN a causal system, but to speak of the ground for a causal system, which is not subject to causality of a serial character or derived from it, but an exponent of it, merely differentiates between the thing found, life, and the basis for it.
If it were held that the ground for life were PART of the system, then logically this is a failure, since you have to HAVE the system for this to be part of it, whatever may be the system you have in mind. You logically have to have the origin for the TYPE of causation which we have, in other words. You have to have meta-causation. It is not of our type, but it makes it. Causality as we know it: this is one of the things within the system which requires its origin and the capability to invest it with reality in observable multi-partite, informational, conceptually complex, symbolism and actuality.
What is its cause ?
Cause-originating person (at least).
What is the cause of that ?
This WOULD BE a self-contradiction, since we have just conceived it as the origin of the thing in view, causality as we know it and use it in symbols and writings, in words and meaning.
HOW could it just BE there ? The question assumes that the type of causal system created HAS TO BE operative IN the basis for it. That is rather like saying that a mother has to be part of a child. She is not. Elements from her integrality are systematically subsumed in the child, but the mother per se is not at all the child. That is the point of creation. This is only procreation, but it has elements of creation. More absolutely, one has only to abstract from the particular to see less and less release of actual components in a given creation, and more and more imaginative election to make something exist, to move from motherhood to Godhead.
Absolute creation is the only alternative to nothing as basis, or question begging something; and as such it requires an absolute creator to exist and to be directive. He is far more than the designer*2. for a designer has the limits of gear, mind, conception, extant laws, materials and so forth. He is not less; but exceeds the normal or even normative concept of designer by many magnitudes of existence. Design is merely an aspect of creation, and when the latter is of all that is, then design is a sub-set simply. The munificence of His magnificence is elemental as well as compositional, and of both in unison; it is compartmental in its creations (cf. SMR pp. 332Gff.) as well as co-ordinative, and occasions grandeur of thought past, but not without, designation of correlative elements.
HOW can such a One be ? It is so simple: if He were not there, nothing would or could be. Causality has to have its origination or it logically cannot be. It is. Its origination cannot be what assumes it is already there, and hence it must be made by what is not subject to it, as if already in a system with it: that is begging the question, taking as given what you are trying to account for.
Therefore the only rational conclusion is this: that our causally conditioned, cognitively investigable, sequentially operative, multi-systematic, mentality of meanings and production of purposes equipment is the occlusion, the creation of what is not this. It must have ALL of the capabilities involved, without being it. That is precisely what is the nature of God. It cannot be less. You have logically to start with what is called for, adequate; this is it. It has to be beyond time and space as inventor of such designations and delimitations. By BEING eternal, it is the explication of all.
Prejudice against what is eternal is not even feasible. It is not those who investigate to assert to what is required that it cannot be. The source is not itself, being inadequate and assuming what has to be shown; it is not nothing which is impotent and unproductive, whereas production is the very point at issue. Hence it is SUPER-NATURAL. It cannot come from anywhere, since that is to put it in a system requiring as a question-begging circumvention, what is in need of being. Beyond prescription must be what prescribes. Without that, you do not get what you have got, and with it, you do. Its eternity is necessary since its construction ALWAYS implies the very things you are trying to account for, and so begs the question and short-circuits the reasoning into nullity.
God then is eternal, supernatural, personal, prescriptive. This is not all; but He is no less.
Nor can He be subject to desire to harass, exploit or misuse His creation, since otherwise He would be subject to psychic compulsions or need or both, and so be subject to a system which is operative OVER Him, and hence be no account at all of how it has come to be. Make such a system and then assign the term GOD to its basis, and you merely move back as far as logically necessary for the result.
Nor can He tell a lie (actually the Bible says this in Titus 1 - it would be self-contradiction). If He were to be motivated to do this, and so do it, then His purpose would be contrary to the reality which depends wholly and solely on Him. In this field, the internal sub-systematics of various fields is not to the point, since God has occasioned them to have whatever powers and interactions they possess; and since learning is growth and growth is subjection to what is outside oneself, God cannot grow, there being nothing outside to endower, or inside to reach a potential programmed into it, or enabled for it.
This type of action is part of the created systematics which is not the ultimate, but dowered, whether by the potential-to-actual coding, or for the development internally of an endued potential, which is for what is made as to type*3His immutability is consonant with His word and works being in accord. Time is mere creation. It has no control whatsoever over Him, nor do therefore any of its developments.
To contradict Himself, that is to make a verbal creation (speech) in conflict with a material or mental one (distort truth about creation) implies an internal conflict of action and word. This means that something is not sufficient within Himself, that something is contrary in one phase or power or function, to something in another. This is merely an import from created system to uncreated reality. Forces within oneself contrary to one another represent limitation, each limiting the other. Limitation involves what is beyond oneself, being able to do this. It cannot be therefore in God, the Creator.
Even self-imposed conflict for 'fun' as it were, would have its come-uppance. Escape from reality implies inadequacy of that reality, and since this One has made it ALL, time included as a control and limit of imposition, and is subject to none of it, there can be no such inadequacy. To lie is to make war on reality, to impose a constraint on the verbal-actual media, and to set them one against the other. This implies an inadequacy for the PERSONAL BEING, in the creation in the first place. It is after all NOT AT ALL Himself, and His own resources CANNOT be limited by it, per se.
In making man, God has used purpose and concept, symbol and semantics, hierarchically conceived and composed SPEECH (just as we do, though we are limited in it) in conjunction with ORDERS, the latter FOR man to be, and the FORMER TO man, to hear. Man is given powers of cognition and symbolic interpretation in semantic format, and these are operable both among his own kind and to the Creator of that kind. Since man is a masterpiece of liberty, making mouths and moues at God, at his own kind and at 'nature', lower life and matter, as it takes him so to do, a site for criticism and complaint by virtue of liberty, and a deployer of reason, by virtue of that internal mode of causality in the mind: therefore, he can and often does speak to, reply to or assault God; or bless and praise Him. This can be duplicitous or sincere, as man is multi-functional in purpose.
The mutual corruption (killing, marring, maiming, agony-imposing, reputation-distorting dynamics from the purposive structure of mankind) of man by man, and the misuse of his coded commands for bodily welfare and mental operational felicity with spiritual efficiency and point, which is now endemic, and human lies, are a situation: for this, we must ponder what result is to be expected. Since this harasses and harms, distorts and disturbs, spoils and renders disproportionate and deranged what God has made, it is an assault on Him, taken in itself. It is an assault on Him because it is an assault on what He has made, but also because it includes lies and attacks on His own being, purpose, purity, probity and power.
A necessary result of this is the clash of Creator and creation. In the case of man, with his power to learn, assimilate and respond to symbolism immersed in semantics, the elimination of mankind is only one option. Elimination of ignorance about what he has done and what God sees fit to do is the other. This would require divine speech. God is in other words, not mocked, not set at nothing since He is not nothing. Nothing might be, but then nothing is irrelevant here. God cannot be, since He is not that.
He did not destroy man. His speech should be checked. In all the world there is only ONE place where what is alleged to be the speech of God is extant and rationally testable. The importance of reason here is this: a dream is an event. If you follow it as reality you do not last long, or if you do, your tenure is likely to end at any time. To confuse actuality with an invention of the mind is exceedingly dangerous and is often called being DERANGED. It is a violation of actual ARRANGEMENT.
Man is a masterpiece of creative symbolism, by symbolism induced into continuing generation, and he is receptive to the same. Hence to provide TESTABLE information FOR him, as well as IN him (which latter is the case*1) is an option for God. Without this, man would be unmanned, made to operate in a fashion not using what he is given, one subjecting him to further derangement irrationally. WITH THIS, man becomes responsible NOT ONLY for his clash with his Creator (present in every lie and each injustice), but also for whether or not he LISTENS to this testable speech and whether he DOES it.
The Bible is the only such book (cf.
SMR, Swift Witness
6) and Christianity is the
only such religion. Further, as shown, it is not only testable, but verifiable
(cf. Light Dwells with the Lord's Christ ...
Deity and Design, Designation and Destiny,
The Meaning of Liberty and the Message of Remedy).
Since such speech must be and this alone qualifies, this is it.
It provides in turn a key. Man is capable of purpose and may or may not turn that key. IF he does not, he is responsible, precisely as is someone who having access to a car, while an army is chasing him on foot, does not get in and drive away. What happens next is his responsibility in terms of choice of purpose.
The key is Jesus Christ. Now the imagery would have 'turn it', but this is in the parable. In fact, what is required, biblically, is that one TURN TO HIM. Thus if your father is addressing you, you may turn to or from him, or even physically draw nearer or go further, even much further, even out of earshot altogether, or even perhaps try to live elsewhere. Leaving the illustration, in practical reality relative to God, this last option we do not have. This world and this body, this mind and this spirit is what each one of us has. Suicide merely ignores the issue and faces the result.
However, to open the mind, eyes or heart, this is something different. Certainly to close them is an option, neither unknown nor unpopular (cf. Matthew 13:14-15). The current epidemic of children 'divorcing' parents is an illustration. It is a matter of preference for something ... else.
With God, the preference for something else (John 3:19, such as darkness*1) can turn the mind from the test of His word, the thoughts from the import of His instructions and the spirit from the offer of His operations.
He has operated in creation; He is operative in remedy. This world being contrary to Him, it goes from Him (to destruction - cf. Matthew 24:35), or He goes from it (man is alone). In the latter case, however, God being Spirit, this is orphan-style aloneness for man. It is not natural, not part of the systematic whole, that the One inventing communication and communicability for him, should not be heard.
If He is not heard, then the systematic corruption of systems proceeds, each at its own level. Indeed the Bible speaks both of everlasting shame (Daniel 12) and everlasting destruction (Matthew 18:8, II Thessalonians 1:7).
However, it also speaks of everlasting life (John 3:16, 10:27-28, I John 1, John 6:40ff.)
The cause of this is, in marked contrast to the gift provided, is temporal death, on the part of God's eternal word, who came as the Bible instructs us and history shows, in the form and feature, format and function of a man, without ceasing to be WHO HE WAS, and is, as if forgetting reality. Philippians 2 and John 3 speak of these things, with Micah 5.
The Bible further intimates that His purpose in so coming included such features as these ...
to manifest life (John 1:31 - the
life of God as the basis for the created life of man,
to cancel guilt with its death
sentence (since contrariety to God, who is the source,
to remove the terror and taunt of
death (Hebrews 2);
to illustrate resurrection as
authentication and inspiration,
to give with this, love, joy, peace
and the spiritual criteria invested in eternal life; and
to grant eternal life to those who
What a splendid thing, and how one praises the Lord God of creation, the beginning and the end of all creation, the first and the last, the alpha and the omega, the only Saviour (Isaiah 43:10-11, Acts 4:11-12, John 14:6, Isaiah 45) for this action. It was an option. It is imaginatively glorious, conceptually profound, emotionally a marvel, spiritually a sacrificial splendour of love; and therefore, to neglect it wilfully is really worse than never having been born. That was the explicit situation for Judas (Matthew 26:24). It is not a good one to have for life.
Christ is the good one, the ONLY
GOOD ONE, perfect in eternity, dower of eternal life, and
indeed the necessary One.
So does the secular find its darkness of incomprehension, the sacred show its finger prints of comprehensive rationality, pointing to revelation, exposing truth, and the sublime shower its light of glory on the life of man. Praise God for His goodness; for just as man will never of himself expunge his badness, so will nothing alter the goodness of God, the grace of God and the Gospel which enshrines, illustrates and applies it to man.
Dig Deeper, Higher Soar, Divine Glory Delights the More
Hapless Hitches and Holy Healings ... Ch. 4,
on this and related concepts in the secular and sacred domains, though the former moves towards the legerdemain, disagreeable to the data, and disjoined from reason. .
When once the soporific sedatives of sundered minds wear off, and consciousness of vital facts is no more a vague and almost intoxicated seeming mirage, then one can once more readily and freely see the designs not only in the mathematical marvels, the assembly-line techniques, the triple weaving of information and supply of information about information in correlated systems, but the simpler things in their just and true terms.
Birds are frequently very delightful in colour combinations, geometrical shapings of the colour splashes, amazingly sophisticated shadings and blendings, things gay and splendid, quiet and sober, striking and remarkable - like thousands of Emperor penguins, or the birds endued with navigational wonders miniaturised with a blend of sophisticated techniques and usages of technically advanced ploys to utilise things that would appal the learned to produce; while beauty abounds in many dogs, setters, Cocker Spaniels, and devotion that is more than dutiful is to be found in many also. Again, the wonders of botany, the exquisite stimulus to creativity and aesthetic appreciation to be found in flowers and leaves, in the vast marvels of trees, waving and interweaving, with modes and methods of dissemination of seeds, cute to acute, with loveliness of outline against skies, changing as the wind soughs, and sighing as it moves, bespeaking stability and strength, the necessity of being grounded and planted, and this in a multitude of forms: all this leaves the artist gasping in wonder.
Talking of 'nature' which does not exist, being a collective name for a multitude of creations, which should better be called simply creation, of this as the source of it all is merely to ask what-is to be the cause of what-is, when it shows neither propensity for its sophistication nor evidence of ability of any type so to act. What is works; what makes it to be that it might work is something else, just as driving a car and putting together the idea, the methods, the inspiration, the testing, the technical knowledge and its imaginative outlay, are somewhat different (like a genius and a piece of wood).
It can be detected, this difference, just as the earth and thought about it are ... different.
When this fad is put to rest, then there is awakened anew the delight in and awe at the work of God, both for that matter, in creation and curse. In the latter department, take the mosquito the surgical instruments of which are not only clever in conceptual implication, but manifest in sequential usage facility, whilst its capacities for evasion evoke a delight in direct contrast to the grief the pests can cause (though personally, I find they do not think much of me, an attitude I hope to continue long!).
Imagine, then, released from subversive subterfuge, the wonder pressed into little man on his two legs with his two arms and two lungs and one heart and one brain (the last able or enabled to relocate and revise its operational locale when injured, to a sometimes remarkable extent, this in itself a work of something more than genius, of life with its light, of God). Fancy being able to imagine things like this, to pursue their logical implications, as also to find their manifestations in vast detail as creation scientists in particular now in significant-sized groupings, are doing more and more with research and presentation, both architectural and literary! Think of the splendour of massive falls, mist, rainbows and power in the uttermost composition, the hues of Autumn, the vast plenitudes of skies racing with wonder, forming in terms of formulations initially enabling it all, displaying a third world to sea and land, in its ingenuities and divinely wrought splendour, a work of art enabled from thousands of years ago to be both mobile and transient, while permanence of type underlies its fluidities.
But enough! once one is liberated to think rationally in this field, and join the vast majority of the race of mankind over the ages, but with clarity because of His word and His work, the Bible and the Lord Jesus Christ, the myths put to rest like squawking children with high fever and no patience (cf. Secular Myths and Sacred Truth), then what ?
It is then that the beauty of holiness, the wonders of creation, the vast superfluities of need invested in living realities, in terms of the mandated beauties, designations, designs and arrangements, things marvellous beyond immediate thought and delightful beyond almost desire, to stagger the heart with its wonder, that these things once more direct the heart to the worship of God, the ravishment by His glory and the desire for His more immediate presence which, in a vast mercy, is actually available in Jesus Christ, not only Lord of life, but Saviour for one to enter into its eternal exhibit, into eternal life itself (I John 5:11-12, Titus 2-3).
The simplicity of the concept is beautiful, as found in John 1:3.
It is this:
“All things were made through Him,
and without Him nothing was made that was made.”
It goes on, “In Him was light, and the light was the life of man.”
First of all, there is the category of “all things”. That means what is visible and invisible, material and mental, spiritual and purposive, personal and powerful, able and actualised (cf. Colossians 1:15-16, where Christ as the Creator of all things and kinds of things is exhibited, having place as first among men because He is the creator of all). There are thus only two categories: the all things in ‘MADE’, and the MAKER.
Next, we find that in the category of the MADE, there are no ring-ins, additives, as in the concept of preservatives and so on, as distinct from the thing in view, a matter found with manufactured jams and so forth. Not only did He make all things, but this is an exclusive. Operations in this field without Him are non-existent. The one involves the other ? But of course, but such is the mentality and will of man, that it is necessary to cut off the jargon of joy-riding and the follies of confusion. The two categories, then, are The Maker and the Made, and the latter is that on which HE has an exclusive.
Light ? This is then mentioned. Darkness from the context (John 1:1-14) means lack of comprehension, spirituality, understanding, due knowledge. Light then implies at least comprehension and understanding, knowledge and reality. It is perspicuous – clear – but as Paul points out, it is what makes manifest. Light explains, exhibits and gives conception is cue.
In other words, He acted with causative power, conceptual vision, imaginative control, victorious understanding and mastery, with knowledge, orientation and comprehensive envisagement, seeing all as it is, clouded by nothing (cf. Proverbs 8).
This light is infused into, or reflected onto, or produced in the context of man, so that he is not without it. It comes from the fact that as to the WORD, IN HIM WAS LIFE. As the life, His is the light. For man as a creation by Him, the one involves the other (cf John 9:4-5, 8:12).
As the Maker, giving LIGHT to man is part of His production impact. That is, the LIFE OF MAN is something which includes what is an emission, a commission, an impact, an enduement of understanding, knowledge. It does not state that this is either total or unspoiled, limitless or without control, regarding man. Indeed, since In HIM, the WORD as life (cf. I John 1:1-4), was the light, then what He does with it for man, is under His control. Again, it is not maintained that in giving man light, man’s life-light, it was not rejectable.
Nevertheless, the life of man, which includes all his facilities and powers, is intrinsically something that has this light. It is neither merely abstract, as if the Creator abstracted it from Himself, nor automatic, as if it did not require adjustment of focus to see with it. It is however NATURAL to man to have such a light.
The WORD in whom was life, in imparting to man his life, provided this light as part of the original creation for man. It was in its first setting, an intrinsic, but not an inalienable, property; though for all that, it depended on the person of the WORD. Thus, it was the NATURE of the case in the creation of man, that this life, from God, became man’s light, ground of comprehension and source of inspiration, grant of meaning and gift of understanding. Without this, man is not man, for the life which made him being interrupted in its relationship, means that what is normal, natural and intrinsic to him as an operator, is missing, a site for darkness, a vacuum without spiritual air, a gyroscope without turning, a rock under water.
Moreover, we are then directly informed that this light, the life of man, is shining in a dark environment (John 1:5). Man is not now in the light as he might or could or should be, but rather in an obstructive or oppositional or rejective mode; and this means that the understanding that should or could be his, is not his. As a race, he is distorted, aborted, his eye is averted, his heart is obscured, as if by a film that renders it opaque and non-reactive or hypo-reactive (cf. Ephesians 4:17-19). Since LIGHT is what has and GIVES understanding, man is in misunderstanding, uncomprehending mode. He is alienated from the life of God and THEREFORE in ignorance of heart. This is pathological, but historical.
Small wonder then that this earth contains that exposure (rather like that of segments of it physically, to ultra-violet light because the ozone layer is dissipating there) to events which tend to depersonalise, tend not relate with sensitive design-scrutiny to those who know not God; for the entire ENVIRONMENT is not only subjected to curse (Romans 8:17ff., Genesis 3), but requires cover, so that the abstraction of mankind from his Maker might be muted, as well as commuted through repentance towards the Redeemer, Jesus Christ. Even the saints and at times especially the saints, the Christians, those who have this cover: these through the love of God, just as Christ suffered and died for them, suffer for Him so that the love of God might be demonstrated to successive generations, as much is borne that souls be born. It is useless to protest, for this entire world is in disarray spiritually, and requires deliverance. not shut-eyed pretensions of 'innocence'.
Not resistance to God but repentance before Him is the need. Rendering this the worse, by judging the Judge, metaphysically, just as Israel once judged Him physically, merely shows where, under pressure, the heart finally lies. It is not for darkness to attack light, but being exposed, to receive it; for whether the fall is at the first, from innocence, or as at the last, the prelude to repentance or the confirmation of guilt, it is not a pulpit for proclamation against God.
When therefore Christ came to earth AS MAN (John 1:14), He came as light into darkness, as knowledge into ignorance in spiritual terms, as perspective-imparter and comprehension donor, to what was averse or astray, absent or uninformed, and this not by a lapse in creation, the making, but by a lapse in the creation itself, the thing made. It was not what it was made to be.
Would men receive this light ? not as something diverse and novel, but foundational and currently obscured ? On this topic, we learn two things: “He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him.” The nation endued with commission to bring revelation to man had itself forged a lie and sought to damage the light source. The second thing ? “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.”
Thus the light had been shining in darkness, normal comprehension had been averted with the eyes that did not behold it, and this was true in the remedial episode of Christ’s coming, even of the nation as such, which He had made His commission agent concerning revelation of Himself, via Moses and the prophets. However, whatever any person or nation might do, what God had done was applicable on a one by one basis (John 1:12).
As MANY as received HIM – the light source – these had a power provided. It was given to them to become children of God. In other words, light would be restored in the field of the former presence of darkness; the niche of understanding would no longer be invasively invested with what did not belong, but with the light of life, and this would be because … resumption of the post of CHILDREN OF GOD (not this time in hypothetical emplacement as at the first, but permanent replacement), had as its natural counterpart - this light.
The necessary norm of life in the image of God, this light comes FROM and THROUGH the WORD of God by whom mankind was created, and is thus personal. Man’s personality is not an additive but the mode of activity, like a radio of old: the valves were not the radio, but a mode of transmission. Confusion on this point is elemental. What is GIVEN is what matters, more than how; what RESULTS is crucial, rather than HOW it comes. Back as a child of God, man now is naturally, indeed supernaturally since this is at the margin between Creator and creation in this case, back in the light.
As an addition, we learn that there is a ‘birth’ for these children, that it is not a matter of glancing light and shade, but of elemental light-reception by receptors cleansed and reconditioned, remade indeed. They as persons have a reconstitution which is a new creation (II Corinthians 5:17ff., 4:6), and it is not mere interplay of forces, of illumination or anything else. It is a constitutive matter, a regenerative one (Titus 3:5ff.). It is wrought by God as was the original creation. It does not depend for its operation on the will of man, his ancestry or genes, his computations or disputations. They are born in disjunction from all of this, OF GOD (John 1:13).
While man’s preference for darkness is a ground of condemnation and a facility God enables, yet when it comes to the ACT of regeneration, it depends on God only, and the outcome is as sure as the income (John 5:24). It is in the nature of the case, the case bought, brought and bred through the Cross of Christ (Galatians 6:14), the ransom from rebellion and sin of all kinds (Matthew 28:20), the ground of redemption (cf. Hosea 13:14, Galatians 3) and the basis of restoration.