a theodicy of hope

Instead of attempting to use logic and reason to deduce a way to establish a valid justification for God (‘theos’) being just (‘dikaios’) in the light of suffering and evil, it may be more simple… The following statement of Jesus in John 16:33 is key: “In this world you will have trouble; but take heart,… Continue reading a theodicy of hope

world + flesh + devil

The world, the flesh and the devil. These three entities have been said to be the three sources of sin and temptation for Christians.  That is to say that when we get it wrong, we can point to the influential lure of culture (the world), the weakness of natural desire (the flesh), and the overarching… Continue reading world + flesh + devil

ordinary sin

The doctrine of Sin has been something I’ve had an interest in for a while, and some of my research and writing has touched on both sin and the forgiveness of sin.  I think it’s a very important doctrine, and thus very important to understand with clarity and balance. Scholars of Aristotle and Aquinas will… Continue reading ordinary sin

human sin: an example

The sinfulness of humanity is nothing I am ‘proud’ to believe in.  Sin is tragic.  But, rather an illustrate this with a list of actions that are easily diagnosed as harmful, it’s more interesting to give an example where sin may not be so obvious.  Whether it’s an Olympic opening ceremony, a corporate philosophy or… Continue reading human sin: an example

the truth about us

I know what self-justification and self-protection looks like, because like all of us, I do it far too often.  Into a world of self-justifiers (like me) where we defend ourselves from any responsibility for any specific wrongdoing, the words of Jesus by the hand of John’s gospel cut through to the basic motivations behind such… Continue reading the truth about us

tsunamis and life building

In a reflection that is most certainly to be categorised firmly on the side of what is understandably seen as the impersonal, cold, logic-chopping philosophical problem of evil (rather than more humane existential or pastoral problem of evil), it occurs to me that the feeling of unjustness we almost universally feel when, say, a massive tsunami wipes… Continue reading tsunamis and life building

good creator

The world is a dance in which good, descending from God, is disturbed by evil arising from the creatures, and the resulting conflict is resolved by God’s own assumption of the suffering nature which evil produces.  C.S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain, 72 Evil as the absence of Good is a suitable description, but better… Continue reading good creator

night

I’m probably the only worship song leaders who, during a Christmas day worship service, introduced the song “O Holy Night” by way of a reference to the book “Night” by Elie Wiesel, which recounts his experiences in the death camps Auschwitz (which I’ve visited and will never forget) and Buchenwald. The juxtaposition is too profound… Continue reading night

omniscience: terrific & terrifying

I love movies that are realistic.  Portraying life like it is – whether it is pleasant or not.  “Seven” strikes me as such a movie, though it’s been years since I’ve seen it.  One striking example is the ‘sloth’ character.  That apartment is pure filth – stuff everywhere and chaos and ruin. I was thinking… Continue reading omniscience: terrific & terrifying

power, complexity & ethics

Two things (neither good/evil of themselves) which will not make humans more moral are technology & science. Technology gives us ever-increasing levels of power; and this power can be used to do both good and evil.  Spiderman, anyone ((“With great power comes great responsibility.”))? Science gives us an ever-increasing amount of data/facts; which make ethical… Continue reading power, complexity & ethics