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Angst and Mental Acrobatics
News Radio, November 26, 02
KNOWING EVERYTHING AND UNDERSTANDING NOTHING
Today there came the news. It was this. The human ‘brain’ is good at picking up natural news, things, events, presentations. Too much artifice and ‘it’ knows that there is something wrong; but give ‘it’ a good blend of sound and picture and it is easy to recall. Were there not tests with various ‘products’ to see in which form, written, audited, pictured, or a combination, results were the ‘best’ ?
So the angst concerning ourselves is reduced. THIS is the way we are: isn’t it interesting ? That is the type of emphasis common in such cases.
How psychologists (naturally one was involved in the ‘tests’ reported) can be bothered when what they are is fundamental to their understanding anything, and until they know all their ‘understanding’ is merely stabs into the dark: it is one of the mysteries of the Age of Misunderstanding, which surely ours could aptly be called. They try to talk about our brains as ‘hard-wired’ to this or that purpose, but in that case, the hard-wiring One has to be there to HAVE a purpose! Moreover, this too is futile, this concept of deterministic cranial control.
If this were the case, ANY theorisation would be crippled at the outset by the plans of the hard-wiring expert! That would include the concept that there is one. On the other hand, when by choice, philosophic man is submerged first in the mystic fog of folly, then the purpose can be envisaged as in a purposeless thing, a mystic concept indeed! Such beauties of anomaly naturally proceed from man in disarray: being either the by-product of angst, searching the heavens and the earth (physical ones of course), and WANTING to be told by SOMETHING what it is; or of that magic of illusion, the god-like thinker who, without any ground or basis, specification or typing, becomes immune to mere invalidity. He IS, like a god, and the idea that ANYTHING could invalidate his thought seems tepid and weak. On the other hand, the idea that his thought is NOT validated by calling on this or that THING, and investing concepts of purpose into what lacks it, does not seem to occur.
It reminds one of
destroyers in the
Not now! says one, for they have all sorts of equipment. Yes, but this is because in the purely physical case of the channel, and the array of satellite supervision and the like, they are able to adapt their understanding to indicators which tell.
In the case of the nature of man, the indicators are ignored, and various local ways and waves are consulted, as to the purpose of shipping and the channel, WHILE they sail! This, it is as inane in concept as is the world in its current drab roll-call of disasters of mind, of body, or murder, of killings, of famines, of greed, of destructiveness, of mayhem addiction, of brawling religions of human invention and cunning of human intrigue. There is more to it than that; but not less.
Mankind is largely moving in the midst of mental miasma and clouded vision, in unpenetrated mist, spiritually, like those without satellite controls for positioning, by CHOICE!
As often shown on this site (e.g. in SMR Chs. 1, 3, 10, 348ff., TMR Ch. 5, It Bubbles … Ch. 9, Repent or Perish Chs. 2, 7, Little Things Ch. 5 and so on), the futility of seeking to found yourself on yourself is entire. How CAN you know anything if the source of the knowledge is unknown ? Let x = your specifications for operation, and x is unknown; now apply x to get x= or x+1 or x-1, and what do you have ? An unknown. What do you then know ? Nothing. Paul put it: Measuring themselves by themselves they are not wise (II Cor. 11).
If there WERE no absolute truth, how could you know it ? If you COULD not know it, then it is IMPOSSIBLE for you to utter it. That is all.
Thus they try to find the brain is this or that, or does this or that, not merely to find out what it does, as if the purposes of those concerned were not important (e.g. to wreak havoc on the lecturer, to show self-importance, to secure notoriety, to be different, to conform, or whatever), or as if their performances gave sanction to validity of their knowledge, but to give us understanding of what we ARE.
At this level, it is not ‘the brain’ which does this or that in terms of mere PERFORMANCE CRITERIA. It is the person whose it is. The brain adapts to the purpose, command and contrivance, the desire, the aspiration and the orientation of the person. It is equipment, like the eye, and like the eye it does indeed have characteristics of its own, but when the issue is not this, What do you see ? but this, What are YOU doing ? then the brain as an implement is merely one feature, limitation or aspect, a facilitator for specification. It does not create the purpose, or dispose its operator. It is USED. It may be used by program or by person, or by both. Like a car, it may be adapted to some uses automatically, and on these individual purposes supervene, making use of the provisions.
You could tell me 10,000 features of brain functionality, without even touching the real question, FOR WHOM does it function, and BY WHOM is it being used ? What are the purposes of this purposive person using it, and to what end is his work directed ?
THE FEAR OF THE LORD IS THE BEGINNING OF UNDERSTANDING
It is the same in diplomacy. You hear that the Saudis are US allies, and then find that there is multiplied attestation that money from this area may have been, or may actually be funding schools in Pakistan turning out guided missiles in the form of human beings (cf. Ch. 2, above), or aiding others more accomplished. Does the brain tell you that ? does its construction allow you to assess purposes ? does it enable you to deal (if so be the case) with treachery or trickery, to read what is not written and to find what is not said ?
Does an organ achieve understanding, and does a device enable personality ? If it did, then in it would be fitted with the invisible controls which erect TRUTH and the invisible criteria of ANALYSIS of personality. Yet in fact its impulsions are frequently entirely disregarded. At best, it gives the tecture of truth, not the touch, far less the dictation of it! It can be hidden, distorted, discarded, or ignored; and when Christ came, this of course is precisely, in entire verification of His work, what happened, now in this place, now in that; though as now, so then, many there were, though a small percentage, who were transformed by Him, to become what they could now be.
If indeed, and to take it a step further, if there were not truth, then the controls would be in vain; and if at the ultimate, no truth existed, then personality itself would be without truth. It would be vapid. It is however, in the sort of presentation before us, as so often, assumed as a part of the life of the brain! In seemingly innocent inadvertence, the actual life of man seems to be forgotten in the interests of inapplicable and remote theory. The capacity to have fits and to be unfit for what IN FORM is fitted to man, is one of his least amiable and most obstructive features, in domestic, social, political, academic, military and international life. Its lessons are multiplied; its bulletins are vast, it is contemporary, it is historical, it fills reams of books, it disturbs the heart, it molests the mind. It is rather like omitting numbers when taking mathematics, to be blind to this autonomous streak available (in aspiration) and so often deployed (in eventual frustration) in man.
If then truth were fitted, it yet does not fit*1A. Error is vast, confusion enormous, antipathy almost routine, alienations are evocative and enormous, variable and intense.
How is this so ? The brain is visible; truth like peace, courage and spiritual vision, is invisible to the senses. The realm of the invisible is the nature of that operational functionality, the human spirit. This is where it is, with its envisagings (invisible to the eye), its understandings (invisible to the outward vision), its wisdom (governing operation, but not part of any).
To confuse the visible and the invisible is merely a failure
to discern an essential, indeed vital distinction (It Bubbles, It Howls, He Calls
Ch. 9, Little Things Ch.
5, Biblical Blessings Ch. 13,
Spiritual Potpourri Ch. 12).
Materialism is general is dispatched in Repent or Perish Ch. 7 as in SMR Chs. 1, 3. The
concept that the validity of the mind is a
priori necessary before any thought about matter arises as possible
truth, means that mind must be taken as prior and ultimate above matter, its
founding a pre-condition of the knowledge of the nature, indeed of the whole
work of matter. The will of man likewise is not even a matter of his mind, far
less his body; for his mind can be sent to
Such is the nature of man in empirical fact.
Is there then no hope for man ? Not at all. His mind is seducible because his spirit is seduced from the first. As we have seen often, it is when you follow the realities of logic that you find that there is ONLY ONE POSSIBILITY of TRUTH, and that is what logic shows by its own internal validity, in forcing the mind to God, even if necessary, against the will, and this with irrepressible certainty (SMR, TMR etc.). When this is done, the VERIFICATION of the singular validity which STARTS without dispensing with the possibility of truth, confirms the truth (cf. SMR Chs. 3, 5, 6, 8-10): the Bible has verified itself for millennia, and rarely more than in this present Age (cf. SMR Chs. 8 - 9). Christ has verified it in a former Age (cf. SMR Ch. 6, Christ Jesus: the Wisdom and the Power of God Ch. 8, Biblical Blessings Appendix IV, Repent or Perish Ch. 2 etc.). History is in chains, to this present day, obeying the dictates of the word of God, there disposed and composed.
The reality of freedom for man lies not its ultimacy, but in its availability (cf. Predestination and Freewill); and God is well enough able to contain the consequences of liberty, to work out the impacts of the performance or otherwise of the messages, whether subliminal, or explicit, and to apply His draftings whether for the illustration of the messes, in terms of follies of unfealty in will, of its subversion, of the subversion of character, or for whatever other godly purposes He pursues (Ephesians 1:11). He has not made of Himself a prisoner in His own creation, being equipped with knowledge of all things from the first, being containted by none and ground of all (cf. SMR Ch. 1). He rules, in the last analysis and final presentation, even fools (Psalm 57:1, 14:1ff., 76:10 cf. Isaiah 45:1, 37:23-27, ).
What then ? The spirit of man, following logic remorselessly is forced to God (cf. Romans 1:17ff.), but does not like it. Far be if from the spirit of man to receive Him just because the demise of logic is the cost of not doing so; and so man uses his logic, despite its demise, to apprise us of ‘truth’, even when his presuppositions have long before removed it, and he has to assert it in the very face of irrationality. Irrationality ? if this is the way of it, then the arguments for it are based on a logic already dismissed.
Hence we really need not to talk about hard-wiring the brain, or the work of the brain in doing this or that, WHEN THE TOPIC IS MAN, and not the nature of his equipment. It is the nature of the spirit of man which is in view, BEFORE (logically) the nature of his disposable equipment. Thus, to revert to the issue of what is ‘best’ for informing man, there is far more to it than checking what he recalls of various forms of presentation, verbal, pictorial, auditory, in diverse combinations. There is the PURPOSE of the presentation, the purpose of man in watching it, the level of discernment required, the cogitation implied, the originality of perception included and so on. For some purposes – that crucial ingredient – of man, the cogitation and understanding, these are the MAIN POINT, so that time and phrasing, the art of expression and the depth of verbal control (or symbolic presentation when it is some other ‘language’ such as mathematics which is in view) may be crucial.
Here, print may be far the best. What helps most with it will depend on the purpose of the presenter, of the reader and the nature of the issues.
If it is a case of the flash recall of the simplistic, the mere data on a product, then that combination of sight and hearing which we have when talking to one another without any particular depth, may be best. It is a matter then of purpose and type, of issues and meanings, not mere mentality. The personality USES the neural equipment, as the auditory, ocular or organisational; but it is not to be confused with any or all of it (cf. SMR pp. 316Dff.). It is its instrument; and it USES this instrument with honesty, wisdom, agility or torpor, hatred, disgust, perplexity, complexity from disparagement and a million and one other ways, depending on the condition and position of the spirit of man.
Being blind to what you are, does not assist you to be it! Hence man is disappearing in this century down the hole he has dug, especially in the last two or three such spans (cf. SMR Ch. 3).
It is dark when it is deep, and also rather frustrating for those who go that way awry from the living God, as you see in the erratic wildness especially that associated at times with the Nazis, with the Communists as earlier with Romanism; and now more prominently with large sections of nations and persons, who are Moslem and follow elements of the Koran (cf. More Marvels … Ch. 4, Barbs, Arrows and Balms 30, SMR pp. 1032ff., 925ff., 125ff.). Once again, the fame of the thrust of the Islamic submission mandate is being felt, but it is just one more of the eruptive mechanics which come when you have not followed the evidence of reason and observation, to God and found it confirmed.
Without God, ANYTHING is possible*1B in the way of disaster for man, and we are experiencing at the present time how manifold is the anything! Madness becomes a way of life; and badness is called good, and even religious. It is precisely as it was – though the case with more data at hand, is more horrendous – in the days of Israel, in the time of Isaiah, as it drew nearer to its exile in Babylon for 70 years, and in time, came to the rather larger one of nearly 2 millenia*1,
v when the Truth,
v the biblically announced Jesus Christ,
v was murdered as predicted (Isaiah 49:7, 52-53),
v and when predicted (Highway of Holiness Ch. 4),
v with the impelling result of the predicted Gospel (cf. SMR pp. 763ff., vide Acts 27:25-28),
v reaching the predicted people (SMR pp. 775ff.).
That murder of the Son of God on mission, though to be sure it was pre-planned and predicted (cf. SMR pp. 755ff.), yet it was not a function of the brain, but of the will which used it to devise legal and physical ways of disposing of Him, though of course in vain (Acts 2:22-29). As to the crucifixion of the Messiah, the following events like the killing itself and its mode, were all in terms of what had been designated (Psalm 22, 16, 110). Methods and means were mere pawns; the power was in the plan, the purpose and the envisagement, the spiritual ambition and the religious desire: by no means implanted, but rather absent in many, raging in some, impelling others, tempting yet more.
Ø The brain is a very useful instrument, as are the eyes, the eminently obvious design of which, in the armies of interactive components, muscles, messages, programs, devices (cf. Technical Journal, Creation, Volume 16 (3), pp. 111ff., and its precursor by the same medical specialist ….), is magnificent in operation, like some advanced space craft: but it is far beyond this.
Ø (Space craft, as we know, do not construct themselves, but require that combination of purpose, mentality, method and knowledge which is then inscribed into characters the meaning of which is pre-determined so that their operation can be effective for the purpose in view, providing agents of the various and sometimes simultaneous actions with instructions not ‘understood’ but operationally precise and effectually performed. Really nothing does that but what is in that milieu, as observation and logic alike endlessly demonstrate – cf. Repent or Perish Ch. 7, SMR Chs. 2 - 3).
Ø It does not however propose and initiate personality purposes, merely allowing them to become operational, or in the event of adequate pathology, causing them to be frustrated or diverted (as when a muscle spasms, but this is psychological spasm, often with underlying intent).
So submerged is modern man is his equipment, that he despises marriage (increasingly in this country) in favour of sexual adjustments, and loyalty in terms of circumstantial changes (e.g. one past P.M. declared that although he admitted having promised X, it was no longer applicable, since circumstances had changed – why then bother promising ?); just as he disperses facts in terms of myths (cf. TMR Chs. 1, 8, Wake Up World … Ch. 5, A Spiritual Potpourri Chs. 1-9).
To be sure, this fulfils scriptural prediction for the end of the Age in which we bathe (Matthew 24:12, II Timothy 4:1-4 cf. Joyful Jottings 12, with Answers to Questions Ch. 5 in general and in two areas), which always has things covered in their spiritual nature; but this does nothing to reduce the pure enormity of the error. These magicians who ignore the evidence and demand of the nonenties of their own composition, the works of creation and composure, which even ‘nature’ most implacably denies: they have no magic! They can do NOTHING! What they do, however, is indoctrinate many who instead of thought, follow the sound of squabbling philosophy, equally vociferous and vacuous.
Alas for man in his millions! Quitting understanding, he understands that he would like to quit it*2; forsaking wisdom, he invites the sovereign scorn of Him who IS IT (cf. Proverbs 1, in one of the most excoriating exercises in the word of God). Achieving a ‘world-view’, he simply follows a specific form of reductionism, blind to most of the data of his own actual living, in favour of the satiation of various lusts. What is lust ? It is any inordinate desire which denies the whole and achieves for a part, denies the truth and seeks a glimmer, works for itself and not for the being whose it is. It is physical, psychological, intellectual, moral, spiritual, social, international or whatever is the realm of its pathology. It is impelling or compelling, depending in the case, but rank in dispelling reality in favour of desire.
Lust works ruin; and accordingly, a world more and more not merely following lust, but exalting it as the thing to follow, the very thrust of equipment, as if the steering wheel were tilted by a stone on the road, making it mandatory to go that way, grows more and more nearly in ruins. But it does not heed, and goes on in its terrorism, its greed and its hunger, its spiritual and physical obesity and its study of how to induce the ‘brain’ to follow certain courses desired for profit, for hatred or for power, gives courses on it, and proceeds on its drab way to the pit.
Let us however make a momentary allusion to Isaiah in his words on his own generation, which instead of being some mere part of history, was a divinely designated period which moral requisitions from God and moral indulgences from man, leading to predicted consequences, fulfilled to the uttermost in the short and long term alike. Its analytical presentation is most instructive.
Thus in Isaiah 5, we have this:
¨ “Woe to those who draw iniquity with cords of vanity,
And sin as if with a cart rope;
That say, ‘Let Him make speed and hasten His work,
That we may see it;
And let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw near and come,
That we may know it.’
¨ “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness;
Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
¨ “Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes,
And prudent in their own sight!
¨ “Woe to men mighty at drinking wine,
Woe to men valiant for mixing intoxicating drink,
Who justify the wicked for a bribe,
And take away justice from the righteous man!
¨ “Therefore, as the fire devours the stubble,
And the flame consumes the chaff,
So their root will be as rottenness,
And their blossom will ascend like dust;
Because they have rejected the law of the Lord of hosts,
And despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.
“Therefore the anger of the Lord is aroused against His people;
He has stretched out His hand against them
And stricken them,
And the hills trembled.
Their carcasses were as refuse in the midst of the streets.
For all this His anger is not turned away,
But His hand is stretched out still.
¨ “He will lift up a banner to the nations from afar,
And will whistle to them from the end of the earth;
Surely they shall come with speed, swiftly.
“No one will be weary or stumble among them,
No one will slumber or sleep;
Nor will the belt on their loins be loosed,
Nor the strap of their sandals be broken;
Whose arrows are sharp,
And all their bows bent;
Their horses’ hooves will seem like flint,
And their wheels like a whirlwind.
Their roaring will be like a lion,
They will roar like young lions;
Yes, they will roar
And lay hold of the prey;
They will carry it away safely,
And no one will deliver.
“In that day they will roar against them
Like the roaring of the sea.
And if one looks to the land,
Behold, darkness and sorrow;
And the light is darkened by the clouds.”
DABBLING IN THE DARK:
WILL WILTS OR BECOMES IRRELEVANT,
WHEN DARKNESS BEING CHOSEN, PERVADES
There is apparent a double remorselessness. First, man in the general rush of things, WILL not because he does not WANT to, do what is morally right, spiritually sound and divinely blessed. He does not, in vast numbers, even WANT deliverance from this, pardon for it or the love of God to restore him to his proper and operational functionality. Even when he does begin to seek this, dynamisms of desire on the part of friends, ambition or lust will frequently lash his purpose like tornadoes. He has no power to find God, but must be found. It is God who in the end, overcomes the rersistance, not with force, but with His Spirit sublimely knowledgeable, lovingly operative, and justly restrained. He knows who are His own, and He takes them; desiring all in compassion, He takes His own in that unpossessive wonder of the beauty of holiness which knows how to rescue, but will never merely impose (cf. SMR Appendix B, Tender Times for Timely Truth Ch. 11, The Kingdom of Heaven … Ch. 3).
As to man, the construction of his brain is just part of his
equipment for use, and has no more to do
with this than does the construction of the eye of a sniper in
Vain is it to seek to slither into psychological determinism, asking us to suffer for the poor man, whose youth was marred by too much money, or too little, by too bad education, or too ingenious! We CAN be sorry for him, but it will not help to misconstrue his disease or disablement. Poor can become industrious, and rich indolent from their provisions, positive or negative; foolish education can lead to stern denial or sinuous consent to its errors, depending on the person. Genetic disturbance can be overcome with amazing determination, or accepted with passive acquiescence, depending on the person.
No one in fact explains these things in physical terms, since these are not the determinants, merely elements of the opportunities, tests and challenges. The endless philosophic tensions between opposing paths in this field, comes purely from the morbid fascination with what is not the case, the extremes which tend to dominate the thought of man, with God made either irrelevant or an absentee. Thus,
Ø the confusion of man’s greatness with his divinely imposed limitations on the one hand (he is NOT autonomous, but subjected to much and subjects himself to more which in turn brings yet further subjection, before he is to be found), and
Ø the confusion of man’s lowliness with the grandeur of the potential with which the Lord has blessed him, on the other, these make the perpetual seeming bases of philosophic oscillation.
As to this latter point: man is no speck of dust, but uses the elements in a fascinating composition called his body, which is instrument in part for his mind, which is functional for his spirit, which is a divine domain with the miraculous provision of certain crucial elements of choice, the fouling of which is nevertheless not the final determinant, since God is able to handle even the sick with His authoritative physician’s skill. Man is very much more and very much less than he habitually would make of himself, in his extremisms, with illusions of grandeur which fit ill on his shrunken shoulders, or abysses of degradation, which refuse to cohere with the facts of his actual powers. He is however, by this same token, answerable.
But to WHOM!
Man in the domain of divine creation is answerable to God; but he is ALSO IN THE ENVIRONMENT OF GOD. Hereditary and physical environment are merely agents for the physical, and at most opportunities for the mental. What is actually to be DONE with all this depends on far more multitudinous realities than the physical, or even educational! It depends on the relationship of man to his service station, manufacturer, and this is the most important of all; for of what use is a brain, if it is autonomously or turgidly directed to make bombs for murder! It is merely expressing in formatted form the invisible purpose which is ideological.
The sort of unconscious atrocity concept, of Freud, who dismisses any POSSIBILITY of his being right, by making an ‘unconscious’ which subverts reality, and hence does so in himself, so that at least you never know what is REALLY active, is quite useless. Man CAN indeed be devious and harbour various lusts in various stages of recognition, since this is part of his pathology. If it were ALL he is, and that were all there were, you COULD not know this. You would be submerged in contra-truth compulsion.
The only way to know the truth, then, is to find the Creator and being healed of your pathologies, special and personal and racial (the human race!), to have purposes which are congenial to your construction AND your will.
How then can your will be changed, since it too is polluted ?
God can change it.
True, but how can it be done, since this is His affair ?
Is man then to be as pathological as he pleases (a rough construction available for manipulation in multiplied millions who present programs with just this amount of picture, and just this amount of sound, verbiage, or listen to them …), and forget about God. As well a baby forget about its mother when it crosses a road, being fascinated by the exact sights and thoughts being evoked by events occurring around it!
Such a procedure is not dangerous; it is spiritually insane (cf. Hosea 9:7). It bears stark and appalling similarity to the blindness of irrational philosophy, impelling the blind to walk in its way.
What then ? Then it is necessary to address God with realism, acknowledge that you do indeed have limits, but those which will prevent His finding you since He is on record to the contrary (Luke 15, I Timothy 2, Colossians 1:19ff.), trust Him, follow His word and so find Christ as your Saviour from sin with all its lusts of flesh, spirit and mind (cf. John 5:39ff., 1:12); and so by your own experience, in association with the Bible, find Him. You then find that He is what He says, and does what He says and gives orientation and truth which nothing ever destroys or distorts, and proceed in turn, like someone at last delivered from a TB sanatorium, free in the light of the day once more, with vigour and reality aloft and beside one.
In such eternal simplicities (in schema and operation) and profundities (in delightful expression of the love and depth of the divine nature, which He provides), does truth lie, unharried and impregnable alike. Man cannot suffer it, even murdered Him who is it; but He simply was resurrected. For love, truth suffered; but it did not alter. It is man who now must alter. A transforming relationship is required, posited upon repentance, presented in power, governed by decree, fashioned in Christ (John 3, Titus 3, II Corinthians 3, 5).
Relationship to God is not a matter of wires, hard or soft, as one Reader’s Digest title might suggest, here or there, in this or in that, literally or metaphorically. In this field, nothing is automated, nor is faith factory made; nor could it be, since it is a personal persuasion which invests the will, secures the understanding and requires a perception both intimate and not rejected (cf. Proverbs 1, John 3, Hebrews 11, Matthew 4:40, John 6:67-68, 14:21-23, Mark 8:12-21). In this last scripture, we see the entire parallel and essential presence of understanding that faith may be.
You have to know what you are believing, and not merely jump into the air, becoming psychologically airborne. IF you jump, it is because you know where the ground is, and can safely proceed on it when you land! Just as God knows who are His (II Timothy ), so those who are His, know God (John 17:3). The lack of compulsion is as in all love (Matthew 23:37, Luke 19:42ff.), and it is so vital and essential an aspect, that grief in the very heart of God, yes lament, may proceed, rather than have the texture of love violated, or its deep inner meaning trivialised or aborted! Faith, founded on God, works by love (Galatians 5:6). It finds what it loves and loves what it finds, trusting what it loves because it is true.
You know what you trust and trust what you know, and He whom you trust (Luke 7:7), is God, whose word you accept because it is truth (John -30, ).
In fact, the living God is normally rejected as one sees in checking the professions recorded for billions of mankind. Nothing compels acceptance so much as rejection compels divorce in continuity. Few there be who enter this kingdom (Matthew 7:15ff.), and this, it is not because of any deficiency in divine love! (John 3:16, I Timothy 2, Colossians 1:19ff.). We need to realise this:
ANGST MEETS THE AXE
AND THE SOUL MEETS THE SURGEON
Naturally man is disturbed by his condition, position, world, follies, abscondings, his theft of equipment from Almighty God, his abuse of liberty, his abuse of his fellows, his exploitation,humiliation and exaltation of folly. Does it not breed disquiet!
The angst for meaning and hope, for understanding and positioning, spiritual global positioning, it is seen in so many ways:
¨ in reductionist, contortionist modeling (cf. TMR Ch. 7);
¨ in extremist philosophies which with a sort of unyielding despair (as with Russell), hug what is unfactual, and love what is inconsistent and inadequate, as if it were a game or a play.
¨ It is seen in palpable self-contradiction, as when people tell us the truth while denying its very possibility;
¨ as in psychic disturbances which, like solar flares, can brandish themselves at the earth from above, and brand it below – as in Nazism, Communism, where thoughts of superiority such as good has over evil, and brotherhood alike are distorted into junk, exalting some race or the human race.
¨ It is found in individual mullings
¨ and confused aspirations, blocked forever because grounded on this earth and blind to heaven;
¨ in wild behaviour, interspersed with thoughtful self-reviling, or congratulation, depending on the mood, which does nothing to shock the heavens into speech, since God has spoken already.
It is all misconceived, intensely pitiful, profoundly misled.
As to God, He is SPIRIT and man’s spirit is not determined by wires, but by God in its presentation (cf. It Bubbles … Ch. 9, The Biblical Workman Ch. 7, A Spiritual Potpourri Ch. 9, Ancient Words, Modern Deeds Ch. 13), and by sin in its distortion. The way out is the way in to God, and this is specified. Follow the directions; for God is there before you, to specify and to enable. He knows it all in advance, but does not for that reason know it less, but more; nor does it imply less love, but more certainty. Seek the Lord while He may be found remains the everlastingly relevant advice (Isaiah 55:1-10) – at least, until this world passes, the opportunities at last retreating, and man is left with one sure certainty:
¨ IN CHRIST is no condemnation
¨ while REJECTING Him has no remedy
(Romans 8, 3:23ff., 5:1-12, Hebrews 9-10, John 3:15-19,36).
¶Love, it is not a matter of acrobatics or wiring.
It includes knowledge and debars hatred,
rests in understanding and understands rest.
Trusting what it loves, it loves what it trusts;
and when vested in God,
meets Him who issues with it, bearing it, being it,
so that the flesh of faith like the flight of birds from a
takes off from the known below, to the light above,
and soars with relish.
As similar to being a projectile, as water to fire,
faith is filled with animation but empty of animus,
a free concentration of subjectivity,
earnest and convinced,
on the objective reality of God.
Nothing is ‘fitted’ in this monstrously variable world, in this regard, except the FORM of truth, in the sense that we are made by it, and for it. When this is not followed (the OPENING for freedom making this volatile), then the obvious mischief which has so confused philosophy (without Christ) for so long, occurs. Man assumes he has truth (which is natural, in terms of his construction), and yet though this be his practice, he frequently assumes there is no absolute truth. In this alley of confusion, he operates, anon with brilliant nonsense (like that of Hume cf. SMR pp. 262ff., 305ff.), anon with wild surmise, dressed in assurance. It gets nowhere, and future generations routinely show this by destroying the validity of the work of past godless mullings!
It is all predictable since man is predicable on God, and in general does not follow Him, and so in following himself, he ends in antinomies of obscurity and intellectual fog (cf. ICorinthians 1:20ff.).
Paul presents the facts in I Corinthians 1:17ff., Romans 1:17ff.. They do not flatter man, but they do show the way to coherent, consistent truth and reality, which flattering or not, is essential for any good thing. It is to be found nowhere else (cf. SMR Chs. 1, 3, Barbs, Arrows and Balms 6 - 7, Repent or Perish Chs. 2, 7, TMR).
It is not however possibility but God who determines what, without warrant or guarantee to the rebellious, is the actual thing which shall be. Uninsured goods are in fact subject to some kinds of limits; but the only limit with God, by undertaking, apart from His mercy and goodness, is that justice can be done by the production of results without special controls! Thus man in this state of wilful contradiction from God, vacuously absconding, is like the chaff which the wind blows away (Psalm 1). In the relevant sense, anything is possible; although of course, chaff does not reach heaven.
Thus we had “in the way of disaster”. Even here of course, the Lord may move to intercept the wayward, knowing His own from the first, and seeking all. It is just that there are no guarantees when the governance of God is willfully dismissed… except this, that without repentance, the final resting place of the autonomous is not rest.
How could it be ? Distortion is not in the procedures. Truth does not touch it.
The Gospel itself has of course been made more and more conspicuous for far longer than that, its first depiction starting at the Fall of man (Genesis 3:15), and its crucial message being ever more conspicuously deployed through Abraham (cf. Romans 4), Moses and David in the Psalms (cf. Joyful Jottings 21-25), the prophets and the life and death of Christ: the witness cohesive, continually conformed to one basis, free and sovereign. However when one is given by a sovereign the opportunity for pardon and purity, it is not particularly oppressive! (Cf. Barbs, Arrows and Balms 17.)
This is often found to be connected with the disconnected desire, as of an automobile wheel sick of being in place, rolling scamp-like into the fields, so that it might evermore lie useless, divorced and alien, fulfilling some kind of rubbery zeitgeist. It will of course have some effect on what it leaves!