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The article on p. 24, Sex & the Sacraments, has all the sense of lurid lewdness which the world likes to secure in even the sacred places.
It leaves a criss-crossing network of attestation to 20th century blindness in major churches (that is, in size), starting it all off with the heading which links procreation with salvation, or rather a visible expression of it.
In fact, however, nothing changes. As Habakkuk says so grandly, and rightly, "His ways are everlasting" (3:7).
People are forever trying
slickly change His words, adroitly using vapid cultural misconceptions to "adjust" His declarations (as by adding "not" when it is absent, or removing it when it is present, in the commandments),
so that the modern preoccupation with cleverness brings a change of mode rather than of reality (Cf. The Shadow of a Mighty Rock - SMR - pp. 442Eff.).
It is the same old tale; and alas, the tale told by an idiot is this: man's efforts to circumvent God, directly, consciously, or confusedly, erratically. Thus this current theme of 'cleverness', spread from space-age technology to adjustments directed to making life longer by trying to interfere with the life-limiting mechanisms or devices in the cells, seems merely a 20th variant of an age-old process.
In fact God can be no more created than 'controlled', subverted than changed.
Men try to find a way to have
In fact, of course, chance is merely an indication that there is no personal or purposive intervention within a system; the system itself is the datum! It is THIS which has to be ACCOUNTED for! GETTING the thing there in the first place, it is this which counts, and irregular inadequacies are no way to bind any system in word or work. As to ours, it is bound in both... except when its ETERNAL (and hence never asininely "derived" from what is inadequate) and uninhibited Maker chooses to intervene directly beyond the system, as any of us can do in our own created systems, thereby using our wills and the systems jointly to fulfil our various purposes. Chance is merely verbal ploy and play to avoid the issue. If you HAVE what you need, or the essential conditions for it, chance does not create; it is just that the system will operate within the parameters provided: and if you do not create, it cannot.
What shall be said of this spurious, furious travesty of reality that for ever looks for the "arising" of what is beyond all that ever has been seen at work, by principles unknown, unthinkable and contrary to all logical thought, alike untested and unfound in all laboratory work, which always uses what is sufficient to produce results, not magic surnamed "chance" ? It is invaluable as
philosophy through phrases, an option instead of
performance through illustration!
It is manna for those who want to protect themselves from reality for a while, till it takes them by the throat at death, and they meet belatedly, their Maker.
The desire for the goods never seen, never heard of, never found, never produced, sought but not found within our universe, the magic blocks which will do what has been done in our universe as is, and build it from inside itself, starting from when neither they nor it were there: this extravagant irrelevancy to logic is as constant as is the denial of the One
requires us to observe that this is a fact. To it, we add nothing; for we are part of what He has created; and though creative, are not vested with divine powers.
For all this, the traffic in the ab initio impossible continues as if gold were under the pavement, Einstein were under a leaf and food production were simply a matter of letting atoms bang about. Fantasy instead of actuality is the name of the game.
Yet it never has worked in any field, could not work in any effective logic, cannot be reproduced in any laboratory and has no mathematical basis, for enumeration of any sort does not create what is not there.
in our race, observably human rather than humane to an increasingly lavish
degree, have in a second field, that of politics and people-management, tried
to do much the same. They want to PRODUCE what is never produced: goodness and
virtue and goodwill amidst peace and good understanding, by some technical
formula, as if the mockery of the One who gave them both the minds and the
desire, were their only career option.
TWO GENIES, BUT NO GENIUS
Biology and politics, then, are two fields of reality-evasion of enormous portent and ones which have exacting prodigious payment from fantasisers: or rather from their followers, such as Darwinists and the neo-contrivers who build on the same sand with different implements, such as Marxists and the like, as placed in China, which retains power by Marxism and makes money by free enterprise, as if duplicity of speech were the only way to go.
These two then: the vital and the political disciplines, have been used to the near demise of the race, for though many remain, the CONDITIONS in which they remain are far more suspect... now! The very earth is beginning to share something of the fever, through dire misuse, advanced extravagantly through preoccupation with power play and exploitation of people, whether for profit or management, in a web of illusion which ignores the only plan that works, that of the Creator whose it all is!
Thus we have been distinctively afflicted by these two undisciplined but not indisciplinable disciplines which, with scientific method in the basement, have built titanic skyscrapers above, as if to sink from space would hit bottom later.
It may - but with more thud! The first is courtesy of that publiciser of the magic of organic evolution, himself confused amidst confusion and attacking (quite rightly) the evidential basis of his own work as inadequate, that is, Charles Darwin; the second is per favour of his cousin in mind, Karl Marx. In each of these developments (and there have to be many when the thing is wrong at the commencement, as indeed there are in both cases), scientific method suffers duress (cf. refs. above, and SMR pp. 145ff., 931ff.), and observation is observably in demise. Thought rules, but is unruly, being irrational. What then of Marx ?
The task for him is simple. How to create a good State by evil means, gentle virtue by vicious virulence, a warless peace by a profusion of wars, a world of abundance by the politics of want, a time of liberty by the arousing of the genie of compulsion, good people by bad means, and a world like an earthly version of the kingdom of heaven (Christ said, "My kingdom is not of this world!"), from an assumed systematic matrix of history, which had no liberty at all: this was his task.
It fails in thought by simple omission of an adequate cause for the desired ( or, biologically, the observable) result which he proceeds to manipulate, even any observable power to coerce life-production into being even WITH intelligence; just as it fails in producing what is beautiful and good by assailing something amongst many things, compulsively, as if it contained all evil, rather than being a form of abuse of freedom. So Communism fails in principle just as it fails in history by the omission of the obtaining of it by the prescribed and clearly irresponsibly inadequate means!
That is what irked Sir Karl
Popper in the
WHAT does not happen ? NEITHER the Marxist predicted product happens, NOR does the Darwinian one happen to happen in any way practically apparent, or formulated with theoretical causative force: this was what Popper declared in his massive review of the actual evidences. As to ARRIVAL, not a SINGLE organ has been accounted for causally in the Darwinian mode, he notes (just as, in fact, not a single one has been seen in transitional stages, or clearly exhibits the same in retrospect). It is true Popper himself tries (metaphysically) to get reality inventing itself by prongs of interchange and development, potential realising itself; but all such efforts fail at once. The GRANT of the potential in the first place is the all-important question-begging commencement; to which one needs to add the potential to develop the potential, and then the actualisation of both potentials, which is merely slow-motion smuggling of the divine powers under phrases. These, however do not provide the reality. God's words can do this, since He has the relevant power; ours do not, since we don't.
Popper's account of the
causative force of these 'scientific' theories, then, is fine. What in sum is that ? This: They never amount to anything, never account
for anything. It is in this, an accurate review: for the simple fact is that in
each case, it does NOT happen like that, though it be watched
for, worked for, hoped for, dreamed of, for centuries. Logic is not about to capitulate, and to murder it requires its validity to be there,
in order that one may logically destroy it; so it stays, and these results do
not arrive by logic any more than by observation.
FREUD AND FRAUD
HOW Freud would KNOW that this was true, when the pervasive sub-conscious, the unconscious would, on his own premisses, be at work with its intrusive compulsions and fragmented repressions, he never got around to showing. And as Jung showed him, the idea of creativities as diverse as those of scientific imagination and opera singing in some way "arising" from a vague interface with what had no face, but was mere mental profusion, confusion and proliferation, was simply not worked through, not scientific, the mere work of ... dare we say it, some subconscious imagination!
Nor did Jung manage it either. With his ideas of archetypal figures of the past, experiences of the ages, managing to transfer themselves, documented suitably with leading roles, keys and symbols to be found in dreams, some mental energy flowing, as he put it, like a stream over time, some libido fashioning things for itself: this was quite as vague as Freud's misconceptions. Indeed, if it was (as it indeed is) refreshingly less specialised in its solemn, almost religious overtones than Freud's views were, yet it is no better in unscientific vagueness. (For the parallel, empirical failure in Jung's theorisation, at the level of non-verification, see SMR Ch.4, pp. 333ff, including 349D-E.)
It is just that in its broad spread of mental involvements, it is to that extent nearer to reality, less reductionistic, less obsessive and less reflective merely of some of the passionate pathology of a conventionalised society.
Whence the power to
co-operate and the desire for goodness, whence the power to exist in all the
mini-wonder of man, spirit, mind and body; whence the mental dynamics of man,
with all their spiritual involvements, and remorseless ingenuities, forever met
by underlying necessities ? From a cause adequate,
using whatever mathematics, from a mind capable, with whatever reservoirs of
mental energy, like holding tanks, from a Spirit unfettered, being free because
eternal, and thus present as a simple datum, and not from some evolving quiddity! Why, because quite simply, you cannot evolve
without first being there! and to be there, in such a
case of the logically necessarily existent Creator, is the whole point. And if
you could evolve, then you would need the structure, the potential, the
ingredients, the pattern of promise, to make it
happen. Bees do not turn into flowers, though they do work and then die.
Science requires structure as well as form, and reason requires logic, and well
as desire. Desire does not create anything, but its frustration if it is not
adequately equipped, or its world on its behalf. But then WHO would so have
equipped it ?
The small point that there is no evidence
The only logical possibility, God, eternal, self-existent, being neither casuistically required to arise from nowhere nor inclined to, because having no need, being always there: He was there and He made what He would. When He finished, it finished, as indeed it is seen now to be, and there is none on earth to re-start it, as also is seen to be the case over thousands of experiments, tests, hopes and dreams. The One who did perform it, however, did it exceedingly ingeniously.
He so equipped things that not only did they possess, in the case of life, powers of re-birth, of having young, but of healing and of re-assembly, of course by product design and thus through OBSERVABLE mechanisms, of activation and de-activation of components and so on. Thus life, a static thing in terms of type, of types, of kinds, is extremely flexible in motions within those walls of creation, which were so ably and with such integral composure, constructed.
Instead, however, of admiring the flexibility of action within kinds, man became obsessed with the anti-evidential magic of new kinds coming. They were not seen. They had to be shown 'arising' gradationally, step by step, from the past. They were not found. The methods had to be shown in the laboratory. They were not found. The possibility had to be shown in logic; it could not avoid frank contradiction. Statistics was wheeled in, as if number-crunching would invent what was not there. It did nothing but produce astonishment in Professor Fred Hoyle, the Cambridge University astronomy professor, declaring that the whole idea of "chance", an unintelligent beginning producing an intelligent end and all that went with it, is "evidently nonsense of a high order" (SMR pp. 224ff.) , just as Stephen Jay Gould of Harvard found "gradualistic concepts" to be "literally incomprehensible" (SMR pp. 234ff.) . Which, of course, it is; but not in terms of motivation.
There it is eminently comprehensible. Man wants, in the case of masses of millions, in dozens of cultures, to do without, manipulate, mess with, dismiss or modify God; and even if he does not explicitly want this, he with notable frequency so acts as if to obtain it; it is just, you see, that he wants the liberty without licence, and proceeds to use it... in a world which, quite frankly, increasingly and disastrously looks like it. THAT is what you would expect when the source is so played with; and THAT, as always in truth, except where mercy intervenes, is just what you get.
We have had mercy, but truth does not resign; it continues while mercy is abused. The satisfaction of truth through mercy in the Cross of the penalty-paying Christ, who however by no means removes this from those who reject Him, is the Gospel option. It is this which comes from the word of the One whose words control biology in code, and history through the Bible, while providing spiritual power through promise to those who receive Him. Just as creation is not obtainable by itself, but by its Author, as is constantly scientifically attested; so its remedy is equally unobtainable by unfounded hope: only by express speech; for God did not create us to allow thousands of years of vanity, obstruction, obfuscation, error, anguish and pain; being complete, it gives nothing to Him but abuse of the will that created. He has spoken and has no plans to alter what He never has altered. The really GREAT mercy is this, that the remedy is unaltered, unalterable and still available in and through the living Word of God who came as predicted, performed as pre-programmed yet freely, and finished what; He came to do.
All of which brings us back to the Sex & the Sacraments material in The Australian. Even in churches it is often the same. Change the Bible, the mouth that spoke it, make it a 'her', or a principle (though how a description of a law could invent laws is not answered!), talk as if God were inundated in "cultures" and could not climb out, so that we, dear liberated souls, "help" Him by showing Him how to do it, liberating ourselves from His words and commands in the process. It is so like extremely naughty and highly imaginative children, that it almost sponsors a laugh; except that it is blasphemy, and its results include the slow deaths through starvation of many of the children which this auto-destructive, and rebellious race sacrifices whilst it pursues ludicrous and grandiose propositions, like finding intelligences hanging about in space, or means of disposing of the earth in an arms race, or arming China so that it can, if it will, do it if the West does not have the stomach.
(It seems, incidentally, that the USA in particular has been doing quite a job in arming China, to judge by a report in the same issue of The Australian. This does not seem the height of wisdom, with the immoral and illogical Communist philosophy in control there, the one which put so much radioactive waste into the Arctic Ocean, because you see, it does not have to worry about morals - until they catch up with it, of course, but that may take time...).
There are many ways to seek
to "cast their cords asunder" (Psalm 2), and to be rid of God and of
His Messiah. Let us resume our look at some of the novelties in some churches.
FREE MORALS THAT ARE STILL CHARGED
We learn in this article that the primate (Anglican) voted (at the Lambeth international Anglican meeting) that homosexuality was incompatible with Christianity, not apparently because such was correct per se, but because it was a STARTING POINT for "further, more nuanced but no less biblical and theological consideration of a complex and difficult question." Great for the pews - or some of them. How the death penalty in Leviticus can be nuanced is less clear; or how the inclusion of this sin, man defiling himself with mankind, in a list of "the lawless" in I Timothy 1:10 is subject to nuance is a similar conundrum, nor how Paul's declaration in the name of God (I Cor. 2:9-13, I Cor. 14:37) that "neither effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind" can inherit the kingdom of God (I Cor. 6:9)! In the light of Christ's direct statement that the one who lusts is already guilty of adultery, it is clear that the subtle mental-physical distinction for a God who requires worship in spirit and in truth, is left with no room even for wriggle.
The point of course is that stealing goods or misusing God's products is not commended in the Bible. On the contrary, there are ways of right and wrong. It is not necessarily MORE sinful (God is judge Himself) to do this than that; but when for homosexual act, the death penalty is invoked in the moral righteousness of God in the theocracy (as in Israel of old), and exclusion from the kingdom of God in the New Testament, it is - or ought to be clear, that we are not dealing in trifles. Nor for that matter is fornication a trifle, and Paul includes whoremongers in the same list. There is simply no more leeway for homosexual lust than there is for equally illicit heterosexual lust: and it IS lust when one is not married, for there is no PERMISSION for the end product, the physical action or the spiritual indulgence of the desire.
Once again, that GOD is MERCIFUL is the other side. Failure in this or that in an honest and toiling student is quite different from irresponsible, or even autonomous rebellion! Two CANNOT walk together, says the word of God, unless they be agreed (Amos 3:3). Equally, the POWER of God is asserted to be present and available for Christians for whatever relates to godly living, which as Christ indicated, is a narrow path relative to human lust and list. (Cf. II Peter 1.)
Thus, finding also that this same Primate has stated, despite his vote, that "I share the view of many at the conference that the last word has not yet been spoken" on this topic, that is, on the acceptability or otherwise of such approaches to human sexuality, we seem to come very close to the age-old practice, bypassing God. For assuredly GOD states IN the Bible that HE has spoken His last word to this generation on the subject, in this, that whoever ADDS to these THINGS (Revelation 22) is cursed, and Christ in Matthew 5 relegates renegades in terms of HIS WORDS to obscurity, stating (John 12:48-50), that the word GIVEN is the word that JUDGES, and WILL JUDGE in that day.
God opened His mouth and the Bible resulted (cf. SMR Appendix D). Man opens his mouth and expects, it seems, that God should shut up, retract, modify or in some way make allowance for change in His product - the one called man! It does no happen. Another Jesus (who is more manageable than the One who said, I AM ... THE TRUTH), and another Spirit (than the One who gave the Scriptures - I Cor. 2:9ff., I Peter 1, II Peter 1), with another Gospel (than the one which INSISTS that what is "dead" in Christ does not make a practice of sin - Romans 6, I John 3), is of course possible. It is just that it is not DIVINELY permissible, and IS divinely CONDEMNED (as by Paul in II Corinthians 11.)
To so many in so many churches, that does not matter. As in all reality, however, the results do. Pardon is possible and permissible through the blood of Christ, which makes the difference between heaven and hell for sinners (of which we are all part, though some are under the sovereign dynamic of sin, while some are loosed, though constantly being worked on towards that final perfection to be found only in heaven). This pardon is as possible for homosexuals as fornicators, for thieves as for blasphemers of the Son of God - but it is not possible without repentance, not in a soul in a condition and post and position of rebellion (Luke 13:1-3). God makes this perfectly explicit.
It is time the word of God was seen in this affair as in all others. If, as we read, it is true that the Uniting Church found an "attempt to reach consensus in the church proved beyond reach" in the same arena and area, or that some RC bishops "give quiet recognition to Acceptance, a Catholic gay organisation, and even allow priests to say Mass for them, on the condition it is not publicised", as the writer of the article appears to assert, then this has little bearing - except by contradiction - on the fact that the definitive declaration is not beyond the reach of God! He has in fact provided not consensus politics for churches, but His word for them to execute - as seen in Isaiah 8:20, Matthew 5:17-20, John 12:48-50, I Corinthians 14:37, Ephesians 2:19-20, I Peter 1:24-25, Galatians 1:6-9, Revelation 22, Jeremiah 23, Psalm 119:160, II Corinthians 4:2. (As equally is the case in the prohibition of such superficial, unbloody, non-suffering anomalies substituted for the Lord's supper, as Mass, in the first place - see SMR pp. 1045ff., 1088Bff..)
Unsettled, unsure and unresolved ? Not by the word of God, but assuredly so by the word of man, and even, as in the case of false prophets in the Old Testament era (cf. Jeremiah 23), by the word of some who are "in" what calls itself the church of God.
Nevertheless, you CANNOT sin that grace may abound (Romans 3), without collision with the word of God, even if common sense in terms of the worship required by God, a Spirit, in spirit and in truth; you cannot so sin and expect to get away with it. As Paul says, in II Timothy 2:19: "Let every one who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity."
GOD IS PURE AND HOLY and
wants His children to be likewise. As with all children, errors are one thing,
and inadequacies can be worked on, but rebellion, especially subtle and
irresponsible playing with the rules, this is another. In the end, this merely
means that the child does not belong, as it grows, to that household. In the
case in view, it is just that it is the HOUSEHOLD OF FAITH which is in view!