mysticism

By faith we know, as the book of Hebrews tells us. Yet at the same time we have good evidence enough to make a sound rationale for why we hold to the Christian faith, specifically in terms of the resurrection account of Jesus, and the aftermath of that.

But there is a certain element of mysticism inherent to our faith, which smacks against the naturalism which many in the academics hold to (though certainly not all). By mysticism I mean something which can’t be explained according to the natural, everyday occurrence of things we observe and experience. And by this I don’t at all mean a kind of god of the gaps, by which we explain all we can’t explain by ascribing it to God and God’s miraculous working.

This sort of Christian mysticism is inherent in God himself (or, God’s Self) as Trinity, as well as entering into creation through the Incarnation when the Word became flesh in Jesus. And the faith is now received and lived out through the Spirit. This mysticism is also relevant in terms of heaven and earth becoming one in and through Jesus, beginning now, but someday to be realized fully and completely when Jesus reappears, the new creation being completed in him.

I like sound, coherent explanations, and therefore I like scientific endeavor, even though I don’t naturally think well with reference to it, but rather am an admirer of it. But even within that realm, while in theory everything may be explainable, we know in practice that what is found as humans are able to more and more probe the depths of things, is just how mind boggling reality is.

But when you bring a Creator into the picture, one immediately has to accept the idea of faith. Faith in something which cannot be observed or experienced in the normal way humans go about life. Though that last thought does open up big questions when we think of love. Yes, we could make that into nothing more than natural responses and grind that down even further into elements and what is behind that, naturally speaking. But is that even rational in itself, really? Of course it would be in terms of naturalism, but what about in terms of life itself as we live it?

Mysticism to some extent saves the day for me. I mean it ends up that God in Jesus by the Spirit makes all the difference in my life. And that difference is in regard to big and small matters. In every matter. But it’s a mysticism as alluded to above (ref: Jesus’ resurrection) which has its foot in the real world. Which lives in the same mess and blessing in which the rest of humankind lives (give or take starkly different circumstances globally).

It ends up being “me and God” to some extent (of course understood in terms of God being the center). And me and others in God through Jesus. Together in Jesus living out this mystic faith and life in and for the world.

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