Information vs. Relationship

The academic study of religion teaches you to love God the way psychology teaches you to make friends and the way that biology teaches you how to make love to your wife: it doesn’t.

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m a professional student.  But the academic disciplines supply us with information and with ways of seeing things, some but not all of them helpful in reaching our ultimate goal: closeness with each other and with the Eternal.

What we believe is important, but secondary to who we follow.  Information is no substitute for Person.  Just like in any relationship, you must never fall in love with your idea of someone more than in the actual Person!  We are saved by God, not by our theology; by Who we know, not by what we know.

“You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that… and shudder.”  James 2:19


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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Sure, everything you say is right. It’s just that I run into more anti-intellectualism, sloppy thinking, and laziness, than pride and intellectual arrogance.

    In my relationship with my wife I find that what we think about each other affects our relationship with each other.

    I don’t see how trying harder to understand God is going to make us love God less.

  2. “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'” (Matthew 22:36-37)

    If we love the Lord with all our mind, we have no room for anti-intellectualism, which is its own strange form of pride.

    But I look at how many religion students and professors are far from the Lord, and I know that it is important to remember that “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.” (1 Corinthians 8:1b)

    Knowledge is useful, but by itself it is nothing.

    “If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.” (1 Corinthians 13:2)

    Let the “knowledgeable” among us not be swift to forget this, nor swift to judge those among us with less knowledge.

  3. Good enough. Keep up the good work.

    I just looked at your “jive translation.” You might enjoy the Bible in Hawaiian Pidgen, which is a real language used by native Hawaiians and surfer dudes. The translation is a serious translation, but as my daughter who lived there a while says, “Pidgen is way fun.”

  4. Amazing. Thanks you. Plenny love an aloha!

  5. We are saved by God, not by our theology

    I would, were these my thoughts, amend this to, “We are saved by God, despite our theology.”

    One could abuse my phrase, I suppose, but then it would be just that, abuse.

  6. True. It’s funny how people tend to fall into one extreme or the other, idolizing theology or ignoring it. Any corrective statement is prone to being misused by someone at one extreme or the other.

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