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DESIRE AND DESIGN,
PURPOSE, POTENTIAL AND PROGRAMMATIC AID
SEEING IT AS IT IS
Walking amid the wild flowers, in their profusion, on the mounting path that led to wonders of inspiration as the cloud forms and extending vistas of the city yielded to the contours of vastness over the ocean, one could not fail to be impressed with two features.
The flowers were abundant, sprinkled over the not too luscious path, with the heat of Summer to be borne, with a careless indifference to difficulty which was little less than inspiring. No gardener did they need, nor any fertiliser, no one to soften the ground, far less to water them in days of 105º F. They simply declared their message and continued, delicate and durable, spread out over the path like hundreds and thousands on a child's bread and butter sandwich.
It was however their geometry and colour co-ordination which was both fascinating and evocative. Ornate and ornamental, lavish in display, sharply dark purples, quieter varieties, delicate purplish kinds and then those just tinged with a mere show of the colour, all were there; or there might be an opting for bluish hue of a delicate lightness, or subtle tints dappled with tips of white, or red or variable bases spotted or disposed this way or that, at this level or that, moving to mirroring tips tinted with white touches, while pink stood ready, and plain white, ready for a dab of yellow discretely, each base with frills of geometrical perfection adorning its head, to the number of perhaps 8, arranged in order, metrically aligned, symmetrically co-ordinated, the picture of the prim while at the same time the profusion of art.
It speaks to the aesthete, tolls for the engineer, communes with the architect, resounds for the artist.
How often does this lordly air of superabundant geometrical art, aesthetic plenitude, profusion of the seemingly delicate, delight to the eye and joy to the mind arise in the world of botany, to be supplemented by clouds in their intensity of glow, originality of design, beautiful in proportion, light and colour in an immense canvas that is not made of materials but mere vapours and gases, lit by the sun, moulded into forms and formats, rushing in splendour, bulking in gravity, with tendrils in grace, so that the art work that is presented makes little of some of the greatest of our artists by comparison.
Mix this with the floral superabundance that evokes the most intense aesthetic response because of its numerical felicity, its order-constraining programs, its subtlety of design, and variety, and the sheer wonder of the trees, vast in strength, or with the lemon-scented eucalypts, slender with proportion like a dancer, delicate pinks in their new bark like a painting and variety within this, like a dress designer's flair, and what do you discover ? It is this: that you have a joy to the most intellectual of minds, a delight to the most artistic, a wonder to the most avidly researching and a result which none can surpass.
In all of this there is that combination of elements with a unique individuality of totality, and a face which presents the integral reality of what is there. It is enough to elicit or indeed solicit the response of mind to its uttermost recesses, and has no bearing on anything less, since it has the very zenith of superabundance. For all mean purpose, it seems like overplay and otiose; but for the mind of man, it satiates with its very liberality, depicting not merely the cover of need, but the mind of the Maker, like an architect who, however lowly his task, has his hand revealed in each building, from the sheer spirit and esprit of the thing.
In the end, the reason for design, depends on the purpose of the Designer. It is quite useless and a simple waste of time to seek to argue that 'nature' is some unseen person with unseen motives or pseudo-motives, or teleological desires, which beckon like spectres from the future, or propel with brilliant inventiveness of sub-moronic mental powers, the works which ONLY MAN can fully appreciate. Man was not choosing between flowers, selecting on beauty, and so enabling them to come to be, at some time before his own advent! Rather does what is now there preveniently meet the mind of man to come, from the hand of the architect of the floral and the engineer of man.
In fact, the magnificence and magnitude of design is NOT something which we FIND 'nature' enabled to produce. All that we find able to produce it, from the elements available for design, is the Designer Himself. His designs are not auto-evocative, autonomous creators, except where logic and imagination enable thought, capacity to deploy power enables its visitation into matter, to make whatever product man may have the felicity to construct. Man the last, is not at all responsible for the first or any part of the way to him! Other than he, the mere conceptual capacity, the inventive spirit, the imaginative mind, it is not there. Even with him, it is not adequate for all we are. 'Nature' is dead to its production claims, alive to the products which it constitutes. Naturalism is febrile myth, tedious toying with what disappears like the smile on the Cheshire cat in Wonderland, as you inspect it. Cars do not make cars, books to not write books, and life merely keeps to its kinds; it is man who makes what is within his parameters, and God who makes the parameters by which man is guided.
Naturalism is as dead as spontaneous generation, autonomous information generation and decreasing designs over time: it has no go. It is mere contra-factual invention, contrary to the discovery of the methods used, the results obtainable and the nature of the case. 'Nature' or if you want to become scientific instead of flirting with fantasy, non-living objects do not show ANY power to INVENT forms of law. They show merely the power to FOLLOW them.
LIVING objects show no power to invent information; they only show the power to conserve it, and gradually lose it, but in any case, not engender it. Information being coded, comprehensible, communicable report, it HAS to be suitable for mind by being MADE so. The power to engender conceptually coded and comprehensible report is not part of matter. The power to CONTINUE such information is indeed in the DNA, by reproductive devices, with room for variations which NEVER show any power to invent new kinds, because new information has no source, and hence no result.
The MEANS of variation within kind are numerous, including such features and foci as diet, transfer of information, damage to genes or to the pleiotropic parcel covering control units, and so forth. Knowledge grows, but things do not change their kinds, while we learn more of the editing which controls, the leverage systems and the parameters of programs.
For that matter, and to be complete, we might add that imaginary 'spectres' as with Hoyle, himself far more realistic in facing facts and implications than most! or organisational powers with teleological foundation, as with Denton, when unhappily he leaves the facts at which he showed such promise, to fall into the ditch of philosophy and imaginary, non-causally, non-empirically attested fantasy: these do not attest themselves.
Any CHILD can imagine anything. Knowledge however requires that it attest itself. It may do so directly or indirectly, but IMAGINATION is NOT the bridge. It is not thinking about what might be if things only were what they attest themselves not to be; it is the use of imagination to procure the principles for thought and institute the logic for mind which is relevant.
It is reason based on evidence, and requiring validation as to its own premisses (as noted in It Bubbles Ch. 9, *1A, and exhibited in some depth in such sites s TMR Ch. 5) that is required for orderly thought and valid operations. Matter is not imaginative. He who has the necessary prime priorities in the case is God.
What has any CURRENTLY OPERATIVE, imagined 'spectre' calling the present to the glorious future, in some sort of idealistic depiction to do with reality which does not GO currently in any such direction, and does not SHOW any such attestation! Rather in the second law of thermodynamics we find an OBSERVATIONAL reality that such things do NOT happen now, and in the degeneration aspect of information, a second attestation in the same direction, while in terms of necessary causation, precisely this had to be so without adequate systematic and trans-systematic powers at work. It is useless to imagine what accounts for facts that are not there. The CURRENT is the nature of the hypothesis and the current excludes, by data available, and the aetiological constraints, the need for such an otiose theory.
Why are your children crying, Matilda ? asks her friend. It may be that there has been a significant emotional deprivation, or there may have been some emotive excitation, based on an ontological questing which is being frustrated ... Matilda, who is rich in imaginative resources, but empirically blind does not know. .
Oh my dear, says her friend Diana, who had just posed the question, how blind you are! They are not crying at all. I was just trying to see whether you are as blind at home as in your teleological theories at work!
Explanations are not required to explain mysteries which do not attest themselves. As to the past, as the Bible states, an adequate causation came from the Causative Creator, who created the material of causation with the manner of an author who calls into being by his power to do so, his design-creative, imaginatively-conceptual, felicitously-organisational flair and capacity to encode, what he conceives and so contrives. It may be a book, be it novel or other.
There is ALWAYS the requirement for this, whether it be held to happen at this time or that, or from some futuristically conceived pseudo-being, or other. It is just when you conceive of it from the perspective of an imaginary being calling things into being from an advance post in the future, you really need to be seeing it happen in order to delve into imagination for its existence. Moreover, what is the nature of such a pseudo-being ? Does it have the above type of cause-inducing and utilising power or not ? If it does have it, then it is not a pseudo-being but a being. If it does not have it, the hypothesis is just words, self-denying of any function and hence bumble-words that buzz and are irrelevant.
As to this calling into being, were it to occur, on the part of a being necessarily so equipped, in fact God, beyond nature and able to endue it with all it takes to be what it is conceptually, mathematically, organisationally, in terms of exegesis of designs and correlation of the same, the texture of mutually-reliant synthesis and so forth: then the Being would have to have a perfect understanding of the mathematics and logic of the case, to induce a model which goes, into being.
What then would it have to embrace, in order to be able to conceive as in the future looking back and inciting the present to grow into some unobserved increment in organisation or destiny or magnificence or splendour or development of artistry or engineering, such as are null in observation ?
It would need that vast knowledge which NOT ONLY knows enough to make and relate all the stuff, so that it is not stuff, and invent it, so that it is what is needed, but that additional power to adjust, with knowledge, all that is, in terms of what is (desired) to be, so that it might come into being, transformed, informed and cohesive in language, concept and correlative execution. That, as with efforts to rebuild a partly demolished and partly stranding structure, is a nightmare for a designer! It does not do it on its own, any more than did its first construction.
It is just that such does not evidence itself; and the logic makes it necessary for the Being to have all it takes whether it be conceived in an anti-observational and futuristic mode, or as attested by a NOT ongoing creation, empirically, one past as attested by the deposit of creation, of which we are all part through action very much in the past. To this, the First Law, that of the Conservation of Mass and Energy, give elegant testimony (cf. TMR Ch. 1 as marked).
As we HAVE already the brute hard work, which in fact is a toil of precision, and hence CAN be and are, already, it is illogical to try to make it come from what does not show any current operation in such creation, and exists in futuristic, retrospective operational mode, while making such things happen. The requirement of logic is to FIND what DID it, not imagine what might do it, and is doing it, when what happens shows nothing of the sort, and would in any case be the work of the same God of creation as is necessarily implied in the creation, which is ALREADY HERE (cf. News 57).
In fact, such teleological diversions are a monument to the unscientific nostrums of our Age, so that efforts are made to imagine what is loth to show itself, explain what does not evince itself, hypothesise what is null in self-exhibition, and to do so in the very face of what has already evinced itself (since we are), and ceased (since the upward surge is not evinced and would require the same Causative Adequacy, if it were). This, being ignored, as if by the ultimate of the blind and the thankless, is left like a cheque for a million dollars in your bank, used but never traced as to source, while you hypothesise on what might come next, which however does not arrive.
TREATING THE ACTION WITH REASON
THE SIMPLICITY OF THE REQUIREMENTS OF REASON
AND THEIR ACCORD WITH TESTABLE REVELATION
MAKE JOURNEYS INTO IMAGINATION
FANTASIES IN DEFIANCE OF FACT
In Tender Times for Timely Truth Ch. 10, we surveyed some of the elements of the case, and this sighted, will enable us to proceed more directly to our current topic: an excerpt therefore appears below.
The overall plan is what is IN FACT realised, and that, it is your personally mobile EQUIPMENT which you use in order to travel, think, walk, talk and grow (including grow old, but this is not fatal to the enterprise even physically, since many more may be built FROM your building, before your unit expires, so that the city of life grows in SIZE, though NOT in KIND! - and that is another marvel! Its levers are levelling, though at the same time permissive of variety in the kind).
WHAT is it which has many commands, all interconnected to the point of being a visibly joint operation, with many materials, aggregated and congregated, then dispersed into forms which interact and comprise a multiple function whole, of integral KIND and determinable PURPOSES ? It is what is called a DESIGN. Is there ONE LEVER which controls it all ? Of course not. There is no ONE LEVER in a CAR, but there are many such, all inter-related and in the ultimate, inter-connected in ... what ? in THOUGHT in the mind of the designer (provided only it is a GOOD design, with proper discipline of thought and planning, and proper KNOWLEDGE of the properties of what is being designed, and the PURPOSE for which the design exists).
In LIFE, the interconnections are profound, as are the interactive possibilities, for example, in nervous system, sympathetic nervous system, nerve cells, neurons, synapses, storages of information, brain centres, their interaction and to a degree, adaptability of function sometimes in cases of injury, like a team ready for being re-disposed by the coach (only in this case, the coaching also relates to program not a little, made thousands of years ago)!
This then is a LIFE DESIGN. That is the meaning of the word "design". That is the raw material which is exhibited in such a consideration as the human body. HAVE this and its exhibits the function known as design. We have earlier on this site discussed the follies of trying to distance the reality from the definition, and the absurdity of reserving for exclusion from the concept of DESIGN what is beyond all argument the greatest example of its FOCUS AND FEATURES as definable, which EXISTS ON THE EARTH!
That ? It is rather like saying this: Marjorie Smithy runs ten times faster than any other lady, has better limbs, greater proportionality, deeper savvy, is more sophisticated in preparation and in facility by far, is incomparably the greatest runner alive, or which ever has been known, but we do not call her an ATHLETE! Why ? Because she too well meets the criteria ? Is it envy, madness, then or both, which prevents the STAR EXHIBIT from the notation which corresponds!
Certainly, it is perverse, and the follies of KANT who as a philosopher helped this spiritual inanity, have been dealt with in detail as well as in overview before, exposed and justly dismissed as, in this area, mere confusion (see SMR Ch.5, and Predestination and Freewill Appendix on Kant, MA thesis for the University of Melbourne). Basically, you CANNOT with logical consistency EXCLUDE causation from consideration, and adequate causation at that, in any enterprise, because to do so you must reason with logic, which exists in its integrity and compulsive power, ONLY by rationality. If you despise rationality, then your OWN arguments by which you make your contempt known, are BASED necessarily on the very thing you dismiss. Hence you dismiss your own validity in seeking to present your adverse view of causality, and hence become systematically invalid in WHATEVER you present.
Further, you ascribe CAUSES for the correctness of your dismissive view, and IF YOU ARE RIGHT, then it is because you are wrong. If you are valid, it is because your arguments use validity; but since you dispense with it logically, then your presumed correctness is your demonstrated incompetence. You cannot say a car is useless in motion, while driving there to do it! (Not rationally.)
If however you decide to be irrational, then appeals to rationality as your ground for this preference are not only IRRELEVANT, but ridiculous. This is to despise 'capitalism' and use it for your own strength (the Chinese case), to lampoon mathematics, and to use it to show how correct your lampooning really is.
Further to ascribe GROUNDS for the existence of causality, which ASSUME it a mere derivation is a clear case of self-contradiction. If your research into its derivation is CORRECT, then you are thereby showing BY its presumed existence, HOW it came to be. Yet this is the par excellence case of begging the question, perhaps, which has ever existed! WITH an assumed active causative process going along simply splendidly, you are able, looking back to assumed netherlands of history, to find just how causation hopped into existence. You cannot however, rationally, account FOR the derivation of something BY using it as the BASIS of the derivation. In that case, it is there before it is there, in order to enable it to be there. HOW mankind can engage in such fuzzy thoughts is not entirely, to a teacher, too amazing, though it is staggering even to the most experienced.
WHEN a student 'hates' a subject, there is almost no limit to his torpidity, in potential. IF he dislikes the teacher, that helps the incapacity to learn. If he hates 'life', this will make for more opportunities of stultification, provided life is the topic. If guilt is in the mind, then the subject where it looms may have overtones of discomfort, also a ready remedy for clarity of thought! When however there is an overwhelming DESIRE to avoid something, such as a husband whom the wife hates, or a wife whom the husband hates, or a political party in the same sort of focus, or a nation, or a race or ... a religion: then there is a sheer splendour of incompetence available. Shouting and ranting, railing and failing, misapprehension and sulking, shame and shamelessness, twisting of facts and tormenting of truth: it is all ON!
It is the maker of this particular design, as it undoubtedly definitionally is, from a CAUSE which is dimensionally past man's uttermost capacity for rational thought, miniaturisation and sheer complexity of control to INVENT as the sun above the moon (and this is just at the corporeal or bodily level, forget ... the rest, which we are all currently using happily), it is HE who is the problem area ? In what sense, however ? Is it because it is HE whom the subject "just cannot stand" ? Is it even TALKING ABOUT HIM, which is intolerable, or thinking about Him, or worse still, any thought of RELATING to Him, and worse yet, RELATING REALISTICALLY!
"I JUST HATE HIM!" is concept often met. There is a sheer cliff face of verticality about it. It is elemental, it is like an arrow in the heart. It is ever there, always rankling, tending to dismiss life itself; or in this case, rationality and ... REALITY! Reality dispersers are frequently found in our race, and they can act as a kind of soporific, a drug, an analgesic, so that a person may choose in this way (or obsessively be borne in this way, like a glider in a down-draught) ... and disbelief and distaste are high on the list for this purpose.
Some may feel there is so much PAIN on the earth that it is intolerable to acknowledge the existence of the designer who created the man creature, since like some gigantic war criminal, still in power, He is best dismissed from the realms of thought altogether, while every effort is made to humiliate, to disperse and to overthrow His power. That is met in the coverage on this topic (Pain, Suffering and Evil). In fact, this forces us to look at the NEXT LEVEL OF DESIGN. Penalties are often unpleasant and unpleasurable, and mockery of folly is seldom embraced. However as we see in these references, they are not avoidable, and our very sensitivities and sensibilities are precisely those operated on, by our own Designer, in rebukes aplenty, both systematically over all creation, and individually concerning one person at a time! But let us return to the next level of design, after the merely physical or bodily.
Not merely, as the lady professor attested, is there an intricate series of inter-related LEVERS in the body, but there are further entire regions in the mind and the spirit. These entities are revealed in SMR Chs. 1-3 and elsewhere, including pp. 348ff., and we shall not rehearse these materials, ab initio, here, though providing some short coverage. Thus, we must simply note that material things are not capable of MISTAKES, since the concept is illusory.
It IMPLIES a plan and purpose which is being negated or compromised or failed. HENCE a mistake is conceivable. Without it, there is mere happening. We humans tend to be full of mistakes. There is the mistake which sank what was (even then) 1600 million dollars US in the sea of error, in the case of the Challenger spacecraft, which did not hit space but the ocean, because... a mistake was made in the planning. Planning! say some. Rubbish! that was O-rings. Really ? Did they then hop about by some program of their own ? Did BEINGS called CONTRACTORS and PERSONS called SUPERVISORS have a thing known commonly as RESPONSIBILITY for CHECKING materials to ensure that they conformed to the quality, composition, and placement which was REQUIRED by a PLAN which someone or some group CREATED!
Precisely. It is even so! The PLAN went astray because it was not fool-proof. The PERSONS went astray because they had too many assumptions about what would be adequate checking, or too many dismissals of those plans, by some other plan, which supervened. It may have been cost-cutting, laziness, lack of insight, but whatever it was, the ACTUAL plan performance, itself a form of planning, failed. So did the space-craft. It is well your own BODY does better.
What, however, about your own MIND! Have YOU ever made too easy assumptions about what it would TAKE to accomplish some objective ? in school ? in profession ? in the domestic domain ? with your children ? One does not meet too many perfect people on this earth, which, considering its nature, is a mercy... Of course you have failed in thought. Sometimes you have even failed in symbolic logic, and sometimes BECAUSE you did not use it aright, or even understand it: this is enormously probable. That is a purely MENTAL error. But at other times, though your mind may have been working with almost beatific felicity, like a savvy sports car doing its stuff, and you could SEE PRECISELY what was needed, you CHOSE NOT to do it!
THE POIGNANT PATHOLOGY
It may have been selfishness, that you wanted acclaim for yourself; or it may have been dislike, that you did not want someone else to get acclaim. It may have been ambition, that you wanted the opportunity to perform, even though realising to the full, that some other person would have been better according to PLAN. It may even have been spiritual desire, that you wanted to KEEP YOUR DISTANCE FROM GOD. Certainly, many do: they would literally rather DIE than have any overlord, God included! "We will not have this man to reign over us!" (Luke 19:14), in the Biblical parable puts it! You will notice the "WILL"!
It may have been soaring pride, in that you overestimated your own capacities, NOT because your mind did not tell you, but because your overweaning spiritual dignity misled you, and you imagined without thought, that you could and should do it, or not do it, as the case may have been in its attractiveness to you. The possibilities of errors of SPIRIT, of WILL are virtually limitless, layer on layer, concept on concept, consciousness on consciousness, aim on aim and evaluation on evaluation. AFTERWARDS, like Hamlet, like Macbeth in Shakespeare, you may REPENT or REGRET or even be INCREDULOUS that you could even POSSIBLY have done such a thing, performed in such a way. Alternatively, you may grieve that even POSSIBLY you could have failed to do it, such an opportunity for tenderness of kindness, or consideration or advance of goodness, or whatever may have been the case.
It may have been a thought soaring, imagination dull or over-keen, a hope, a level of aspiration; but in the end, it is dust. You know it, realise to the full the misuse of potential involved, and wonder how it could be. It was not MERE ERROR, though error it was. It was a form of blindness, of voluntary dulling of conspectus, or even obliteration of elements of life from the very arena of thought, altogether.
THIS is another sort of disease. We commenced with the genetic variety where, despite magnificence of causally induced, conceptual creation, there comes to be this or that error in the performance, and this despite all the editorial facilities to keep to type. Incidentally, the sheer incapacity of information to generate itself in life is one of the major thrust of information science (the sort that, being 'science', deals with facts, with actuality), and it is this which makes a mockery of the imaginative relish of disdain towards the majesty of the actual causative Creator, and does so, to the uttermost. Information is a conceptual and mental thing, and the formulation of the conceptual is a mental affair. Minds do not operate without their own presence. Their products do not so come any more than road transport on wheels without wheels. This is what DOES NOT EVIDENCE ITSELF. This is fact. It is also principle, for the domain of symbolic logic is not one of happening, but a guided tour of a conspectus of symbols and their signification, directive in type, interventionist in program.
The BODILY genetic pathology is one layer of levers. Then there is the MENTAL pathology, another entire region of action, where MISTAKES can occur, and do so because CONCEPTUALLY that is the WAY in which we ACTUALLY WORK!
We started it in Primary school and before, and our teachers were able to assist us to realise that MISTAKES CAN AND DO OCCUR, either because we are stupid as students, or they are stupid as teachers, or something in-between, or more pleasant to say, but not more pleasant to do. IT HAPPENS.
It is often arrogance, inattention, lack of desire, misplaced planning and so on. THESE errors later in life can be intricately involved in many mental mistakes in many disciplines like a plan over-wrought, mistaken, a building made by blunderers, which the real expert constructionists would rather destroy than attempt to remodel! (Biblically, we are "regenerated" or born again, this time in spiritual felicity, into the family of God Himself - as in John 3, Philippians 2-3, I Peter 1; and this from the state signified in Ephesians 4:17ff., to that shown in I John 3).
This is the mental sphere of error, and levers here can operate in various directions. They may intertwine with the next domain, but for the moment, this is our occupation of thought.
Thus you can have a wrong CONCEPT in mathematics or politics, and HENCEFORTH until you correct it, ALL your thinking is POTENTIALLY crippled, and actually often astray, FOR THIS MENTAL CAUSE. You can have a wrong PROCEDURE in thought, and this potentially always and often actually dims your wits, and ... your harasses your mental productions!
- Then there is the entire realm of the spirit, in which you may make a mistake through pride, distaste, contempt, self-acclaim, efforts at 'self-esteem' -
- (that horrible psychological mountebank which wants a feeling and has to attempt to invent facts to support it, instead of being content with the realities and doing one's best at these, allowing the emotional to be realistic and not a queen of fantasy, or a lord much to purr with his cat by the psychological fireside - but more anon) ...
- or other illusionist fantasies, deplorable devices, unseemly aspirations, exaggerated dimensions of misplaced hope.
- (It is true it sounds rather pathological, but what would you expect when the nature of disease is our topic - it does not imply that nowhere is there such a thing as health!)
- In this domain of the spirit, indeed, you may lack or seize something amiss.
CONSIDERING PLANES OF EVIDENCE AND PLANS OF ACTION
Thus we need to consider ALL the evidence, including man's attestable guilt, the Cinderella of psychiatry so well expressed by Shakespeare's Lady Macbeth, and of course required as a rational reality by the facts of our human case, as noted above.
What OUGHT to be, on the basis of our nature and observable actions, as a design, IS. What ought to be done with it is less conspicuously evident from what IS done with it!
Yet in fact, the entire so-called question is not even hard.
Thus, the information deposition has
the kind specifications are
substantiated in the code and in the observable limits of variation;
the nature of man for good and evil is superabundantly attested over millenia;
the designable realities are not producible by the pretentiously named
'nature', that is,
glorious specifications, whether by code or observable result,
What is required is assignable and has been assigned as above and in SMR Chs. 1, 3 5, with verifications logically, in Ch. 5 and empirically in Ch. 2, 8-9, with parallel considerations of specifics of verification in Ch. 6, and negative removal of contenders ungrounded and unfounded in reason, in Chs. 3, 4 and 10.
The fascinatingly apt elements of curse, whether in mosquitoes or leeches, are also investigable, and there is the like ingenuity in these, as in the other creation. There is the same requirement, but there is a very different operational result. In the one, as in the construction of man-KIND, there is a felicity enabling prodigious works of mind and body, as well as admirable or detestably destructive and irrational works of spirit. In the other side, there is a similar and indeed wholly parallel work which harasses, hampers, limits and rebukes man, so that in the moments when an intense and roving egotism is not driving him into dreams which never touch the realities of observation, or the necessities of reason, there is a challenge and a rebuke as operative in direct confrontation as in indirect whittling of his alleged wisdom, by things he can neither control nor imitate.
Man works with the powers given to enhance the results of the means provided, in things spiritual or personal, physical or environmental, social or domestic; or to damage or move to damn them indeed. There is always this provision of curse, the willing participation in works of devastation calling for more dynamic in the divine rebuke, whether this initiative of man sprang from deluded ideas of common weal, built on air, of or personal or racial or national domination, built on power and self-idolatry.
Man can act in both ways, to enhance the evils or to seek by patience and application, and the hand of the Maker, for the way that resonates with reality, pleasing to God.
He can attenuate some of the curse, it is true, but only marginally, and the more he esteems his powers to do so, the more are the chimeras of hope drained by the complexities of the case, never still, always active, always provided for. It is God only who can harness the curse to Himself, via the deposition of deity in Jesus Christ, and so exhausting it, assign the extraordinary and supernatural blessings to which man has neither claim nor access, except through this ministration of pardon, by the power of the love and mercy of the living God, who in Christ, died for us to and with sin, that we might in and through Him, to righteousness, and more, in the sanctity of the splendour of His Spirit, which ministers truth to our hearts, comfort to our lives and understanding to our minds, His word, the Bible, the message of majesty and the invitation of mercy.
This way is as narrow as your arteries; but they do bring blood. It is as constrained as the dendrites of your nerves, but it does convey messages, and result in necessary action, through the call of the divine to the denizens of the deep occlusion from light, the children of men. In this way, by the wit and wisdom of God, there is evacuation of pollution, immigration of mercy, disposition of strength, vitalisation of imagination, the serene surface of peace fathered by the presence without compromise of the truth, Himself as clear in diagnosis of our sins, as in those glorious provisions to remove the inglorious, and restore reality in Himself, from which it proceeds.
For this human race, this vying, dying, looting, loving, noble and infamous body of diverse people, there is provision or build or destroy; and in building, to become intoxicated with power or wit, and to ignore the very structure within, designed to enable such action. Man moves at length to destroy by the sheer idiocy of illusion, whether this should be expressed in amoral moral declarations - a splendid contradiction in terms, telling you what you ought to have and be and do in terms of morality - irrational intimations as in the follies of philosophies (cf. SMR pp. 422E ff.), or the splendid provisions of political systems, enabling puny propositions to extort liberty from those who follow their groundless emptinesses.
It is not that there is NO answer in these things; but that the emptiness of the answers derives from the absence of the Maker of mind, the tutor of spirit and the creator of life. Without Him, there is of course no answer, since that is like trying to drive a car where no earth is, no foundation, no basis, no road therefore and no point. It is like ascertaining the answer to a question already found in principle insoluble, because ignorantly asked, or couched in language which defies or defiles reality; it is like declaring that absolute truth is gone but it is true that it is so!
Thus there is a total integrality of language in life, operability of life in a cradle of matter, and direction of the steering of living objects such as man, equipped with reason, to delight in the design, discord with it, or discard it. The latter riots in schemas such as sexual perversion, political self-aggrandisement and ludicrous claims to portions of the earth because of the need, real or imaginary, for lebensraum, or because 'I was here before you,' as if squatting in vacant houses gave you the title-deeds. So man moves, cheating, abusing and robbing; or else to consistency with the tenderly triumphant provisions which enable such deeds of derring-do on man's part, in the beginning, but no less, the beauty of holiness and the gravity that relishes divine grace and seeks acutely to find its uttermost provisions in peace.
Thus does the material design, the
mental designation and the spiritual dynamic
wild follies, personally, socially,
nationally and internationally; or
that centres in the proud purveyors of self-interest; or
thirdly, the impetus to make him susceptible to spiritual understanding.
In this last case, it resembles the finding of the object, the 'steering wheel', that great ability and facility that is so much greater when man discards his blindness in favour of light from the Creator, so that he may live an abundant life. There meaning not muddle, certainty not ambiguity, light that provides understanding of the routes and ways, and the Lord who gave the equipment are all to be found, and the realisation becomes part of the remedy; for man in darkness is like a child at the wheel of a sportscar, with the engine running.
Man has long fought battles of spirit with words and war with soldiers, in different domains, and the former often provides rather directly the genesis of the latter, such as in the case of Darwinism, Nietzsche's wiles and woes, or the values of the French Revolution, including the poetically expressed thought that it would be a good thing if the blood of enemies were to soak their fields. Sometimes he turns to the truth, as in no small measure in the England which was moving forwards from Elizabeth to Victoria (whatever its combinations with power-hunger and commercial rapacity), and in the USA as it sought in the nineteenth century to find the application of its Christianity, with which the very soil itself was soaked. Alas, in the twentieth, like someone with a two set advantage in a five set tennis match, seeing how to lose it, American man is becoming treacherous to truth.
It is readily lost when power and privilege seek to steer.
Man wavers and wanders, often wantonly unwilling to continue with virtue, reason, goodwill and grace, derivable from the absolute truth without which he is a mere plaything of various forces, inner and outer, and a pit of confusion, more or less verbal but never rational (cf. SMR). His design permits this, and being made in the image of God, he has valid and verifiable access to God, without whom he is as Christ indicated, a mere cut-off branch. He lies beside the vine, but is not alive, a mere residual whirring and blurring occurring in the dying fragments of former (spiritual and designed) life.
Design, synthesis, significance, meaning, purpose, all these things reason discerns, and provides with but one answer. There is NO OTHER revelation, adjusted to the parameters of man's mind, which in no part has he created or improved in KIND, than that of the Bible. Nothing else is even testable, except in the negative cases such as*1A Seventh Day Adventism in its genesis, and Jehovah's Witness. The result of such test is appalling, error and things undifferentiable from specious imposition, unattested or counter-attested!
Yet negative testing is not to the point, but constitutes mere explicit attestation of error. POSITIVE attestation is scientifically needed in any assessable hypothesis.
What reason requires, empiricism finds. The Bible being eminently and uniquely testable, and this by explicit challenge to man to use his 'nut' (as in Isaiah 41, 43, 48), it is readily identifiable as having the knowledge of coming events which would be inconceivable over the millenia, since the very bodies, political, personal, and the cultures, assignable, declarable as to the weal and woe, are merely a beginning for the structure of the prophecy. There has to be the exact detail in the prediction as well, as meticulously provided as the definable design of that human integrality called man.
It is found. There is no opposition. Scientifically, forgetting and foregoing the wholly unscientific, and indeed anti-scientific duress on WHERE and WHAT is to be found that gives to man, the purpose-built, the Purpose-Maker's instructions: there is only one answer. What it is that is required is NOT our system, being its own source with the power to INSTITUTE it, since our system being what it is, shows no slightest power to make itself into something wholly diverse, just as this system is wholly diverse from nothing, which by definition lacks all such power. The latter is the absent; the former is the absentee as far as institutive dynamics is concerned. Yet it is this which is required.
What then of the actual dynamic of institution, and the power and imagination needed ? It is non-material since material limitations require causative ground, and this would merely be a staging post. Ultimately, there is nothing material possible, with its imposed limitations, in the purpose-maker.
But what is the purpose of man ?
You may imagine an African forest-dweller coming for the first time into civilisation. He sees a car. Cars manifestly do not make themselves, since
1) there is an integrality about
their multiple-methods of interlocking and degradable systems
2) it you sit in it and fiddle with
all its accessible parts, you cannot fail to notice
Pondering the whole project, you happen to open the bonnet and there find other things that move in a circular sort of fashion, and get a shock from the battery, which leads to believe that it has some sort of power. What would power in this vast, intricate looking engine be for ? Why, of course, in this design, there is a NEED for power and something which is large and seems to include power! Could it be that it has some sort of relationship to the comfortable seat next to the ... yes, steering wheel.
Certainly, it could. Then you discover that it has a screen with words on it. You read these and finding them intelligible, conclude that this is an information disposing device, to instruct you on how to go. In a little, you conclude that this is a transportation device of a sophistication far beyond your own. Its consignment with facility and brilliance of a large number of correlated and integrated features convinces you that a being with knowledge, wit and wisdom, purpose and power, has constructed it for some REASON and hence that it has some PURPOSE.
What, however, could this be ? Motion is clearly relevant and, noticing some cases in the back seat, transport! You are in no doubt, because all data are of one kind and none other, that intelligence like yours but either far beyond it or better instructed with knowledge to which you have no access, has devised this. You then LOOK for the agent, the man or ... more potent agent still, the purpose-maker.
You do not need to think further, except about the varieties of motion in view. The cause is self-evident because of the nature of the observable universe.
NOTHING acts like that on its own.
Contrivances ALWAYS need contrivers, resources do
To be sure, some things continue to organise themselves, in life forms, and to grow, like trees, so that without your efforts, you get more wood, but it is TYPE wood, and its origin is in a pattern which continues. NEW purpose-built things, in KIND, td not arrive, nor do the means, short of having a purpose and some power, appear. It all goes back to purpose and power, and power dispersal in what is made, as the purpose is fulfilled.
Hence you look for the Maker of the
Car, the Designer, the Purpose-Impresser,
Building has stopped, except by intelligence.
So we revert to our African from dark jungles of isolation, who found the car. You are he. What then ?
You find a man, and he tells you why he made it, and explains patiently the enormous amount of knowledge behind the design, the sophisticated mathematics, the computer concept and the whole relevant realm of computing, the engineering components and principles, and when 10 years later, you fully comprehend in a manner worthy of our technology, you say: Ah well, that just shows what our KIND, mankind, can do when he has enough time, and material, and opportunity and sequence over generations.
You are not in the least surprised: after all, you COULD follow it all when it was explained. You now find that this sort of thing is used in war to kill, as well as for comfort and in the air, to thrill or harm, as well as transport; and you marvel, perhaps at the sheer devilry of the designs of mankind upon each other, in this highly knowledgeable folly. By this, you find, they assign terrors for their own design, and theft for the earth on which they stand, that they might direct it as they will, for thrill, or till, or to bill their enemies; and so acting, never be still.
HOW could such inveterate folly disadorn such magnificent splendour in the technical features of the design itself ? you ask yourself. It is clearly the freedom which is part of the design. Is that the fault of the Designer ? Hardly, for without this liberty, YOU would not be able to be even interested, far less wise, and life would be evacuated. It is a marvel beyond all programming, this invention of derivative person who relates to the image of the Creator Himself, and can even thing coherently and rationally about Him.
Yet there is no lack of instruction in the valid, verifiable, monolithic Bible, and all its words come to pass. Hence man is in rebellion, not only in arrogance, to do what he will, to use God's creation to afflict it as he will, but to ignore the specification of brotherly love and co-operation, because he refuses to know the Father through whom the brotherhood can alone exist, have meaning or truth, involving purpose, plan and projects, and harmony in holiness.
INVESTIGATING KNOWLEDGE WHERE IT MAY BE FOUND
Man is in fact in this position. His evils are manifest, his irrationality is pitiful, his gross dreaming is delusive and his attitude to his Creator in turn, is an obvious ground for much of his difficulties, for his mutual hatreds and vyings.
Rapidly awakening to the case, you realise that it is because mankind in general and in his natural state does not care, as you did, to find the PURPOSE of the design (called mankind), even though it is easily found and utterly clear, and wholly testable.
But how did you find it ? Why, you looked around for it when you learned to read and to understand the use of words and inventions, and finding only one book, of all but infinite fame, testable and programmatic in prophecy so that for millenia back, it is checkable, you checked in and used the formula, called the Gospel, and found the Maker for yourself.
Man is simply now, as to the design of things geological, ecological, astronomical, biological, physiological, psychological and irrational, trying to subvert them to his own designs upon them.
You reflect on your recent introduction to modern science, from your earlier days in Africa, observe with a wry smile that had you simply sat in the car before you understood it, this would have been horrible, had you happened to turn on the key as you fiddled, or put it in gear, and far worse would it have been, had you in excitement, tramped on the accelerator.
How foolish beyond words such actions would have been; but now that you have knowledge from the creator of the car, why it is all perfectly safe, though you may wish to return to your obscure African village, rather than participate in the starkly obliterative pursuits of man, and pray instead to the testable God of creation, for the PURPOSE He has for YOU! That is one option.
Then of course, there is the live and rational option. It is the one you took. It is the one which Romans 1 reveals, and in which I Corinthians 1 exults. You reflect on some of your earlier adventures as you sought the answer.
You found it partly by probing and inspecting, but partly by asking.
With what horror do we find that man is doing. On finding what erratic, evil, what manifestly absurd uses are made of these steerable, engined sorts of things, man frequently selects to his taste. Our African, after his own conversion, might have followed this with some zeal.
Man might decide that there is little to be done except to abstract himself, like a Buddhist rather in principle (cf. SMR pp. 995 -1026 ) from the follies of his fellow humans. Yet this is mere insulation through isolation, and has no cogitation leading to illumination: without God, your precepts are mere contrivances of motion. He might decide to seek for former glories as in Islam, and seek to subject others to the god whom you erect as worthy of worship, even though his power does not work, his words do not apply and the God of the Bible by contrast does at all times, and visibly now, just what He said (cf. SMR pp. 829ff., 1080ff., More Marvels ... Ch. 4, Divine Agenda ... Ch. 6).
He might indeed decide to follow all sorts of hilarious irrationalities (as in Aviary of Idolatry); but in the end, it is mere will for its thrill, not reason thirsty for truth, fearless in enterprise, finding faith where it belongs, in Him who spoke and it is recorded in the DNA, as in the other realms of life and its environment, who spoke and it is recorded in His textbook and director of operations, the Bible. Aided by multiple, myriad connected contrivances of brilliant programmatic schedules, organisation, organs and in some cases, these with provision for limited intervention (as in holding your breath), man is pampered into personality, able to utilise the profound wonders of mind and spirit, like a fully conditioned sky-scraper. In its grandeur, were it personal, one could well imagine that it might hallow its own name, the very epitome of the current madness of cultural man!
What then might our friendly African find ? The more you study what the various races and phases of humanity do, the more you are amazed at the lightness and air of the surmises, the sheer fantasies of ecstatic dreams, like organic evolution (cf. Secular Myths and Sacred Truth, SMR Chs. 1 - 2), and the gross character of the delusion which suffuses the minds of man like poison gas - great swelling words of vanity indeed, as Peter clearly foretold for the time of the end of the Age (cf. II Peter 2-3).
When however it comes to the Maker of the whole definable design KIND called man, then it is a matter of checking out what He says. You reflect on the path you have trodden since you left the isolation of your former life in Africa. Perhaps God then has some solution for the individual who detests the sheer robbery of land and design on the part of those who made neither, and want to grab this or that part of it all, for themselves, and to rule, often with odious hate and fatuous non-wisdom, others of the race.
You remember this thought simultaneously with the sudden obviousness of the testimony of one body of words that met all criteria, and did so uniquely. You perhaps recall how you followed out the biblical charge against the human race (as in Ephesians 2, 4, Romans 1, 5). You read and you looked.
When you did so, of course, you found first of all, what reason taught - the depravity of the human race, in essence and in principle, since it does not, country by country, work on the wisdom of the Maker or heed His requests, far less obey His commands. Indeed, you found that much of the race mocks Him while it steals His products, such as man and environment, for the personal uses of delusion, often mixed with intemperance and personal or racial pride. You found this spelled out with precision, as in the Exodus, reported in the book of that name in the Bible, where the PLAGUES were DESIGNER deployed, to act as specific rebuke to pride, on the one hand, and the attestation of human powerlessness in rank but futile rebellion against God.
You saw what became of Egypt when it saw fit to directly tilt at the declared purposes of God (cf. The Exodus Escape and Beyond the Crypt ... Ch. 8), seeking to secure Israel as a long-term slavery project.
This intensified your understanding and reports what in principle had already been obvious; but it showed the direly and directly personal manner in which the Purpose-Maker can and does act. You found that this is merely an illustration - and what more impactive mode than history - of the work of God to provide by sacrifice (as in the Passover in Exodus 14-15), a just cover for man's sin, in the interests of the Designer's Desire to rescue His product.
Since that product, mankind in the case before you, is not merely personal, but able in this book to find that the Creator likes to talk His mind to the mind of man, which in turn explains why man's mind is so developed in the abstract and propositional level, a purpose-built wonder (like the engine in terms of the motion quandary about the car): you looked further. Soon it became obvious that there is a solution in store.
In time, he found in this Bible that God decided not only to rebuke evil, but provide good; but not alone to do this, but to cover the evils of man's heart, the sins, with a sacrifice not merely repetitive, and illustrative, as in the regimes of animal sacrifice (which hurts and costs), but unique and involving His personal coming as a man. This means that His sharing is not only in purpose-built communication capacities in the product man, but in personal actions in observable divine initiatives of meaning. It means that there is a divine rescue operation.
Meaning then is not at all limited to the ABILITIES of the freedom using creation, man, the intellectually facilitated being, mankind, but is overflowing from great depth, in direct communication from the Creator. God SPECIFIES not only the DNA requisites for the design, the most complex visible design by a large margin, ever known on earth by man - but the divine requisites for man in the aspect which matter does not share, and mind itself does not direct. God has provided propositions and proposals for man, as he moves in his chosen directions, his uses of his own personal, invisible steering wheel, in his spirit (as so defined, cf. SMR Ch. 1). There is a Spirit to spirit communication, invested in words, expressed in history, fulfilled in prophecy, intransigeant in character, immutable in thrust, reaching culmination in Jesus Christ.
Man thus discovers and we can consider our African friend, as assiduous in checking the words of the Creator as the works, earlier. This brought him to consider the work to be wrought, the pathology to be overcome, the condition that he is in. He saw that he is a sinner sentenced not only to harassment, adverse happenstances which appear merely a result of systems, but to what includes much more. To be found no less are the divine foreknowledge and possible direct intervention, as when an inventor sits in his car, and changes something to test or show something while he travels, which leads to an awareness. So there is no limit to what God can do with or for man (cf. Ephesians 1:11).
There then was found the Gospel, the cutting edge of the word of God, and the depths of it with it, and the height of it as well. Subdued by the Spirit, convicted of his own sin, astounded at the love of God and the power with which He had personally paid for it, the effectiveness of the action, the compassion of the King of men, and the practicality of what He did, you repented with a repentance never to be repented of, committing your spirit into His hands, who made it, which were crucified for it, which fashion the church of the living God. Then awakened personally, you realised more fully the sheer extravagance of the divine liberality.
This Creator loves His creations not only enough to avoid their summary destruction for their misuse of the equipment given, either
in their deliberate defiance of the instructions provided; or
in the ludicrous pretentiousness
of lordliness, as if 'nature' created itself, and that,
in self-affirming rebellion; or
in manifestly absurd autonomous capacity to 'handle' things.
The Maker loves them, you as our African read, and how much ? It is enough to pardon the folly, re-create the spirits, change the patterns of cultural or psychological - or indeed any other - dynamics, and enable man for all his past, in the present to subdue his madness and construe the will of his Creator. His word provides this attestation, that it is no mere matter of authority in action. Far from this, it is the Creator in sympathy and compassion, willing to be hurt and harassed, Himself in person, and to drop charges against anyone who is willing to receive His words, His work of salvation by atonement in the Second Person of the Trinity sent, Jesus Christ, as man (Isaiah 48:16 shows it, as does Micah 5:1-3) and as the express and definitive image of the living God, incarnate, incorruptible, unblemished by sin, invincible as Saviour and grasped as Lord.
Not only so: He is willing to send His OWN Spirit into the humble and contrite, the regenerated spirit of man, when this transaction of pardon and receipt of pardon THROUGH and ONLY through the death of Christ as Redeemer (Colossians 1:22), that work done to pay costs of human moral crime and spiritual fraud, to say no more, is done; and does so, where and when it is done (Romans 8:9). You recall the eminent empowering of your spirit, the energising of your drive, the awakening of your sensibilities, the strengthening of your perceptions and the new integrity in your heart. You reflect further.
In all these ways, the Lord has proceeded in this way to enable man to communicate freely with Himself, through the line and the power implicit in the work of the Spirit (Ephesians 1:12-13, 3:16), and in the name of the One who saved. He has provided, moreover, in the Book of the Lord, the Bible, a complete statement in propositions (cf. SMR Appendix D) telling the case, so that man's unenviable trickiness cannot delude people into confused misconceptions of His word. Thus, one may test those who come, whether they are mere adversaries, wolves in sheep's clothing as Christ put it (Matthew 7:15ff.), or simple brethren under this one Creator.
In your heart, now that this is done, there is a spiritual awareness of completion, satiation and a spirituality which seems to bring itself like a wind, into your own midst.
Here we leave our African. With the key to personal holiness, enabling voidance of inter-racial, international, society-cleaving vileness and violence secure, and turned in the lock, he reflects on the absence by exclusion of the love which is of God, which in its absence, is like oil drained from an engine which grinds. Yet this same love, in its presence enables John to cry (I John 3:1):
“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us because it did not know Him.”
Yet if there is a distortion, an abortion, an elongation, or crushing, man seeks to find it, and scrambles scrabbling, ready to be deceived; but his solution is attested by his dissolution as he ignores it, as well it might be, while he prolongs his agony in acute avoidances, wild in spirit, wily in mind, defective in reason, woeful without wisdom. Grieved in spirit, blighted in belligerences innumerable, frenzied in fiascos, he rejoices in rebellion (Ecclesiastes 7:29).
The futility of the misuse of the utility of freedom roars like a landslide, slides like an avalanche, cracked like a valley wall, drowning in its deluge, impoverishing in its loss, injuring his design as he designates his purposes, desiring what he forsakes even as he forsakes it, willing for the thrill of autonomy, unwilling for the bill. Yet it arrives.
Man has assuredly “sought out many devices” as Ecclesiastes declares, being indeed unwilling to be upright, while passions attach to the dreams of disorientation; and now that he is specialising more and more in the terrestrially devastating, the acmes of unrestraint, despising seemliness, reviling love, ennobling lust, his panaceas grin boldly in his grieving face. His fall is being reviewed in history as if in so many slides of pathology, ready for the microscope, and it proceeds and regresses, as in Romans 5, or Romans 1, and is depicting itself as in Ephesians 1 and 4, as if this were its very course, and career.
For the remedy of Ephesians 2, however, he has less stomach, though some are finding it, by the grace of God who having paid what is needed, pardons those who come to Him where He may be found (Isaiah 55, John 3:15-17, Titus 2-3).
So do the sublime ironies speak to the endless passions that propel man like an inane charioteer, to the impending crash, while the wheels groan and the chariot tears itself apart in the spree. Imploring help he is unwilling to receive, he spurs the horses the more, spurning life as if himself an agent for death, calling on his myths which do not hear, ignoring his Master whom he will not heed.
Such is his trend to the end. It all has long been exhibited in the word of God, like a lecture on history to come, couched in history long past as in Romans 5, with further glimpses of the advanced stages of disease, as in II Timothy 3, I Timothy 4, II Peter 2, Revelation 6-8 and on till the eschatological terrain mocks the blindness, mimicking man’s follies, by being precisely as foretold.
Much more can be and is often said in the realm of reason, righteousness and the cultivation of the multiplied marijuana crops of dreaming oblivion, literal or symbolic, in order to reduce the pain which nevertheless increases; and if this is desired, many features are to be found in this 117 volume set.
For example, one might ponder the ‘rejection syndrome’ or the ‘religions of negativity’, via the relevant index in SMR, or Secular Myth and Sacred Truth, or News 121, 122.
Folly is numerous indeed, its disruptions, dispersions and complications a comment on its ruinous role. Its voice is heard constantly as if the roll of an empty drum, but the sublimity which waits in vain for mankind, while in mercy seizing some, is crucified by mere violence, amidst the inane drum-beats of violence, just as Wisdom itself was crucified, when directly offered to man, in Christ Jesus.
As He Himself declared,
“You seek to kill Me, a man who has told you the truth” (John 8:40), and indeed,
“Because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me.
Which of you convicts Me of sin. And if I tell the truth, why do you not believe Me!”
In this, as always, the word of God is fulfilled, for some 7 centuries before, Isaiah foretold the preliminaries of the divine, sacrificial provision for sin, declaring (53:9 – bold added),
“They made His grave with the wicked …
because He had done no violence, nor was any deceit in His mouth.”
Not only, indeed, was it because of the unanswerable truth, so then as now, that they killed Him, He being inconvenient and truth undesired when it became practical.
It was also because He did not summon the divine resources which would have made light of the opposition of mere man, that He proceeded to die, and to accomplish the death to which He had been called (Luke 9:31): for how would He escape that for which He CAME, or how avoid what was the crucial point of His mission (Luke 22:39-46, Matthew 26:52ff., John 18:36)!
And that ? It was to die vicariously for sin, covering as many as called and received (John 1:12), by faith, the Lord as Redeemer and King, according to His word. Violence was for His mission, to receive it, since violence was inbuilt for His suffering, that He might redeem, even those who did it, if they should repent. Thus He did not call for deliverance from it, by distinct, divine decision, as reported and recorded, but gained grace to endure it.
Thus, instead of seeking what His power would readily provide, He sought what His grace eminently desired to confer, and accordingly did He continue to call (it is a continuity which is reported),
“Father forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing!”
(Luke 23:34), as also was foretold by Isaiah 53:12.
It was, precisely as the prophet had pre-announced, BECAUSE He had done no violence, and BECAUSE there was no deceit in Him (allowing a compromise for safety or security or man's pride) that they killed Him! Truth He embraced, and violence He did not commit for His own deliverance, and yes, He rebuked its use (Matthew 26:52) at the critical point, and told why, in His appearance before Pilate (John 18:36).
The precision pounces, the testable practicalities pursue history and will not let it escape. As it was to be in the wit and the wisdom of God, so it was. As Isaiah foretold, as Christ continually declared (cf. Matthew 17:22ff., 20:18ff.), and John the Baptist had announced from the first (John 1:29), His role was cardinally to bear sin as the Lamb which removes it; as it was instituted, so it was performed, and as it cost Him, so He paid, whether in the pungent preliminaries or in the anguish of bearing sin (Matthew 27:46): this too as foretold in Psalm 22:1 cf. Joyful Jottings 22-25).
Yet while the entirety of the pre-announced divine program rolled on as if on film and transferred to history, leaving man no excuse, the agents went on as the blinded may do, oblivious of the ironies and the iron that they faced. The rejection syndrome, that vast spiritual plague which dizzies man and bedizens his wandering head with the grievous and discoloured wreath of red defeat, moved on like a demented dance. Passion pouted, opportunism sought, ruthless selfishness, personal or national, betrayed the truth and opened the door to calamities unspeakable, with a bow.
The prince of this world winks and blinks; but he does not see (John 14:29-31). It is all as it was to be; and what now is constitutes its own commentary, calling into history, what has already been written.
DESIGNER SIMPLICITY FOR HUMANKIND,
AND THE DEVIATION OF THE DEVIL OF DESIRE
However, the case is ever so simple; so that when the Creator and Purpose-Creator, the Designer and Enduer of man with spirit and mind and body in an environment of logically unity but diverse directions of flow in terms of blessing and cursing, declares just that, it is apparent that it is so. Man is like a fighter or wrestler, holding down the truth (Romans 1:17), and the wrath of God is pursuing this inane, or urbane, or devious, or proud, or wanton, or disenfranchised, or ruined relic, as Paul acclaims there, while at the same time the love of God is appealing to this same KIND, mankind (Romans 5:5, Titus 2-3, John 3:16, I John 2:1ff., Ecclesiastes 12, Proverbs 1), to be kind to himself and realistic about his creation, and to seek his Creator where and when He may be found (Isaiah 55).
That, it is where He has provided in His purpose-built salvation, attested over millenia*1B, in each of which all the ingredients are further exposed, or applied, as in prophecy and history. It is found in the Cross of Jesus Christ, that epitome of the love of God, of His practicality and His nearness, where pardon is paid for and power in the resurrection is shown, so that man CANNOT show anything but the resurrection, either logically or practically*1. The body of Christ, zealously (and naturally so) watched as to its deposition by the women who mourned (what woman does not trace her tortured child as she may, and what GROUP would do less, when intense love was involved, even to the uttermost - cf. Luke 23:55), was not available for ANYONE to undo or display. It was only while He lived that they had that privilege, to desecrate the devoted, to contaminate the pure, to torture the truth.
When He was buried, burial was contemptible for the One who created death for sin, and He overthrew it, moving out with a power that nothing could inhibit, with a liberty nothing could undo; for when God acts, man is as powerless as he has been these 2 millenia, to find the crushing to his taste; for God is neither mocked nor moved.
What He said He would do, to this point, He did; and what He said man would not do, man did not do; and the Gospel He said for a millenium beforehand, that would result, did result, and its world coverage which Christ foretold MUST be before His return, has been. Just as this has gone, and gone out, so did the body of Christ which nothing could withhold from resurrection. Man failed, despite two millenia of notice. He was utterly and wholly powerless to stop the Lord (cf. Matthew 16:22), either from this exhibition of love and provision for pure and just pardon, on the Cross, nor from the resurrection which sealed its efficacy.
It was like the case in which Christ asked, Which is easier, to tell this man that his sins are forgiven, or to tell him, a paralytic, to take up his bed and walk ? In that case, He did the latter to exhibit the former; and in the case of the crucifixion and resurrection, He did the former to secure the place of pardon, and the latter to exhibit the power of God, that the trust of man might be in Him whose life is eternal, and who is so disposed to share this with mankind, that to ANYONE who calls on Him in faith, receives these provisions and puts His trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, God's only begotten son, the Lord of glory and express image of His person, who has confirmed His written word: there is a free gift of life (John 5:25, 3:16, 10:9,27-28, Romans 6:23, 5:1-19).
What then was the review for the reviewer to disclose ?
In the event, as to the body, it was gone. Nothing could circumvent this assurance from Psalm 16, Isaiah 26:19, Psalm 22, where the forces of evil and good met, and the power of God prevailed first in word, as in the creation, and then in deed.
Neither the power of Rome nor the hatred of Jerusalem could find that body. The most intensive motivation, together with the repeated pre-announcement that He would be raised, in prophecy some 1000 years before, and repeatedly (as in Psalm 16), from the lips of the Saviour Himself (as in Matthew 16, and often), as a challenge and pinpointing of the issue: this could do NOTHING. Thus, just as Christ raised the dead in His life on earth, and healed the incurable ill, so His own resurrection, the more following His resurrection of Lazarus after four days, became a profound placed for test.
it became an issue, His power obviously needing control. His resurrection MUST not happen. One can see their preoccupation and its ground (Matthew 27:63ff.). He had raised the dead so obviously, this being a cause of a huge notoriety just before the crucifixion, it was clear that this was no ordinary case, and stringent care would be needed. Since that very power of God had touched the limits past man in raising the dead and healing the sick as predicted likewise, and available for refutation had it been observed to be otherwise (as in Peter's speech at Pentecost and thereafter in Jerusalem), steps to discourage its exercise in the case of Christ's corpse were essential. The whole viability of their case depended on it. If not only Lazarus but Christ Himself, slain and that tortuously, were to rise, what but empty words could answer!
It was that attempt was made to increase the guard; but the religious authorities, they had their own as seen in the arrest of Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Indeed, the religious anti-Christian zealots had plenty of power themselves, and they set the guard over the stone, the boulder, only to have no way of producing the body, which was left to the mourning contemplation of the Christians who met Him and worked with Him, till He left as He had come (Luke 1:35), mission complete, for the present. He came by the power of God and He left the grave in the same way. For the Creator of the universe, reversal of death is like changing a circuit: child's play, though the pain and the contempt, the passion of love and the singular anguish and agony were no play!
What then did God plan and convey in words, that He would do in the face of the revolt, the reviling and the ruin called mankind ?
He did not seek to ferret out of man some resource, being wholly his constructor, Himself not at all delimited, since none but the Creator is thus. Indeed, were He otherwise, it would be merely a creation confused with the Creator. He had no need from man; but man had much need from Him!
Yes, He came to save, to deliver, to re-orientate, to re-create the kind called mankind, according to kind (cf. Colossians 3:10), and then to spread the Gospel throughout the world (as provided for in Isaiah 66 and many Psalms, and foretold in His own words, in Matthew 24:12). This, Christ indicated, would proceed until the finale as in Isaiah 66, Micah 7, Deuteronomy 32, Luke 21, II Thessalonians 1 and so on).
In the overview, it is apparent, then. The Purpose-Maker for the construction called mankind, has CREATED, while man has desecrated; has JUDGED in preliminary judgments (cf. SMR Appendix D, Exodus Escape, Pitter ... Ch. 4, Beyond the Crypt ... Ch. 8), while man rebelled; has appealed and OFFERED over millenia (while man toiled and spoiled), and has SAVED (on the Cross, after displaying His power over sickness, death, the weather and the hearts of man, and fulfilling the pre-announced plan there), so that anyone who wills,
may drink (Revelation 22:17),
may come (John 6:37),
may enter (John 10:9),
but ONLY by Him, naturally, for the Planner has His own plans!
Other plans are rubbish, children drawing designs about what to do when your engine over-heats, mere follies. It is the Maker who knows, and He being infinite, without bounds as the ultimate source and causal basis for our kind of causation, and with it, its temporally consecutive correlation with chronology: He has no equal.
His plan is necessarily as unchangeable and unrescindable as Paul declares in Galatians 1(cf. Sermon Galatians 1). Indeed, were it otherwise, it would be another being not the Creator, with whom we would be dealing. But in this as in all things, the enquiries which reason provokes are the answers with precision, and indeed super-abundance, which revelation, testable revelation, provides. That to which reason points, this being a God-given gift in a God-given world with a God-given spirit in man: it is this which revelation provides. Its solution is unpredictable; but its necessity is clear (cf. REASON, REVELATION and the REDEEMER). When it is found by His revelation, then it must be received, for to fail to take the redemption is to insist on the pit: what else!
It is then for THIS that God waits, and it is for this reason that man is not altogether and entirely, already consigned to the rubbish basket.
It is, after all, not a bad design, but one marked by a brilliance of conception staggering to thought, which custom often encrusts, but which remains more wonderful than any other visible creation; but a wretched misuse of it by those so magnificently endued by the Creator, has created havoc. Miscreancy has this for its tale.
Man has been provided with mind and spirit so that he may in principal contemplate that vast novel realm of choice and decision, and ponder, even about ultimate things, and use the power of reason to investigate, whether the item be the material, the mental or the spiritual. Even if his will is so diseased as to be deceased in the realm of godliness, mere intimations being present in the lost spirit of deluded man in his autonomous pretensions, so that he cannot choose God (John 15:1-4, Romans 9:16, Ephesians 2:1-10), yet far is this from precluding the love of God which HE asserts would have ALL to come through the Cross of Christ to the holiness of His haven for man, in Himself. If therefore HE operates the final opening, yet it is with the passion shown in the Cross that not one be lost, that He does so.
How often He laments the end result for man, in the very face of His most stringent desires and exceedingly grievous protestations, in heart-rending seeking for him (cf. Ezekiel 33:11, Jeremiah 9, Matthew 23:37 - cf. SMR Appendix B, and even for Moab -Jeremiah 48:36-38, and for Babylon! as in Jeremiah 51:9)!
But love does not intrude; does not force; and has its own way.
This then He has SHOWN in deeds innumerable in the days of Israel, and thence in the New Testament as every particle is fulfilled. This He has WRITTEN no less; and the two are like a see-saw, moving up and down, but illustrating the point in one location, the testimony of God.
It is not after all, space which is so enticing and so rewarding to this creation, this purpose-built contrivance called mankind; that is mere adornment. The central issue is SPEECH from the Designer, and it is this which for a vast assortment of generations has been available to man, preached and taught by him, until there is now no excuse.
The anti-scientific and scurrilous effort (although proceeding from the spiritual blindness already biblically attested and here noted) to remove certain realms from thought and investigation concerning creation and design: this is mere feckless fantasy, and the very end of scientific integrity (cf. SCIENTIFIC METHOD, SATANIC METHOD AND THE MODEL OF SALVATION).
It is not what your pre-conceived notions make desirable, in science (though in the past whether in spontaneous generation or phlogiston or paleontology, this has not been altogether uncommon): it is not this which is the correct site for exploration. Rather is the correct site for exploration that to be found in the unprejudiced, who are willing, yes zealous for any test for the truth, in the ways of those who follow scientific method, to ANY field and ANYTHING which offers explanation with facility and breadth of coherent coverage.
That breadth, it is to this that one goes; one does not move in contradiction of ruling laws, to exclude what one's subjectivistic religion objects to, from research and the agenda. One does not, if following scientific method; but man assuredly does perform this excruciating distortion of objectivity and science, when following the current cultural norm! It is PRECISELY this which is done. What is desired by the hallowed precincts of humanism, or materialism or other ridiculous reductionisms*2 to make what you want to be the ruler of what you are and of all things, though these be merely names for parts: it is this alone, with a witless irrationalism which beggars science, which is to be so much as considered.
The shameless shibboleths of scientistic squalor erect their ruling citadels, in the ruined neighbourhoods of pretence. Thou shalt not follow the evidence, for when it is negative, it might have been positive; and when it excludes, it might have included, and when it is by law contradictory of your inane theories, yet there must be other laws, and when logic disagrees, then flights to fantasy must be sanctified in your misbegotten slums of irrational squalor, till science becomes but a memory, and truth a wry grin.
What is factually based, MUST be investigated, and the religion of evolutionism with its humanistic or anti-theistic warp has become the greatest violator of truth since the Inquisition (q.v.), or Communism*2, and perhaps if possible, towers over these, for its sheer obscurantist cant.
By contrast, the ONLY field which is rational, aetiologically sustainable, empirically verifiable and wholly explanatory is that in the Bible, in particular, and in creation, in general. That is what our research has shown these many years, and what has been declared amidst these 117 volumes*3; and it is this to which the (otherwise named) Education Department of South Australia refuses debate. Why ? Is the truth not keen on coming into the light! Are rationally illicit laws and scientistically sordid dreams to replace what stands upright in the light of common day, scientific method, rational test and consistent application!
Blind by passion, man continues as he did in the First World War, in the trenches, refusing to change his heart or thoughts or the aspirations, stuck, inconsolable, dying, wretched in the mud; but here, it is not to rebuke an invader, but to resist the Creator. It is done in educational establishments, in communication media, in books, in radio broadcasts; it is thumped like any other hollow drum in its seedy time.
The entire departure from reason, revelation and truth has become a passion, embracing war, disdaining the bases of peace in the Creator who made what man is and has the remedy for what he has become, working in its meretricious and often devious diplomacies, power blocs and deceits; ignoring God, it engineers dissension, confusion and calamity; and asking for no mercy, it brings in divine judgments as well.
It is not new; it is merely more intense. Its champions are feeding man to the lions, and only divine mercy has stopped the process from that finale where man will no more be ABLE to inhabit his appallingly mistreated globe, spirit and life (cf. Matthew 24:22).
Predictably, IN THE END, this can (cf. Isaiah 57:15) lead only to the ruin and rejection, the reduction to garbage dimensions, of the mankind who was so unkind to himself and to his kind, as to be wilfully blind.
Decisively, in that end, the Gospel will have its consummation as already it has received its culmination in the death and the resurrection of Christ (cf. Revelation 7,14, 21-22). Meanwhile, this so clever world, full of its own foundering and unfounded wisdom, has a dearth of truth and a renegacy from its Maker, which starves the obese, and makes gaunt the distressed.
See Sects, in Index.
See Barbs ... 17, TMR Ch. 3.
See on the Resurrection of the body of Jesus Christ, the Messiah
foretold and confirmed:
Great Execrations ...Ch. 7;
Barbs, Arrows and Balms Appendix 3,
Biblical Blessings Ch. 15, Extended Endnote 2,
Acme, Alpha and Omega; Jesus Christ ... Ch. 11,
With Heart and Soul, Mind and Strength Ch. 3,
The Magnificence of the Messiah, Endnote 1,
Dastardly Dynamics ... Ch. 11, SMR Ch. 6 and Index,
The Kingdom of Heaven Ch. 9, Section 14,
Joyful Jottings 25, A Spiritual Potpourri Chs. 15, 16,
Stepping Out for Christ Ch. 5,
Things Old and New Ch. 2, Excursion 2A;
Light of Dawn Ch. 3,
Beyond the Crypt: the Divine Script and the Face of God 2;
Dizzy Dashes, Heady Clashes and the Brilliant Harmony of Inevitable Truth Ch. 2;
Spiritual Refreshings Chs. 5, 6,
Ancient Words, Modern Deeds Ch. 8 (on resurrection and Lazarus, yes and both with Jerusalem); contrasting Greek bodily terms - Let God be God Ch. 2 ;
and New Zealand
Dizzy Dashes, Heady Clashes and the Brilliant Harmony of Inevitable Truth Ch. 6;
The Frantic Millenium and the Peace of Faith Ch. 4
See for example, Repent or Perish Ch. 7, News 97, 97, Aviary of Idolatry, SMR pp. 867ff..
See for example:
The gods of naturalism have no go!
SCIENTIFIC METHOD, SATANIC METHOD
AND THE MODEL OF SALVATION.