Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Pseudo-Mature Theologians & Red Herrings

Invariably have I both observed and experienced older theologians demeaning younger ones by age rather than unfaithfulness, and I have previously ignored it in reverence. I am certainly not referring to mentorships or one's receiving guidance from those wiser than oneself. Obviously, those are wonderful, productive things. I am referring to the inferior complex-inducing strategies and authoritative appeals of the modern day theologian, which are most recurring when they fail to support their own tattered philosophies during debates. Job 12:19-20 says, "He leads priests away stripped and overthrows men long established. He silences the lips of trusted advisers and takes away the discernment of elders." Time and time again does the pride of man influence his very own fall (Proverbs 16:18). While denying it, one gradually starts to believe that he is the authority, or that he possesses great moral dominion over others, yet it is spiritually unwarranted. By that point he loses steam; in result, he falsely begins trying to prove that unwarranted dominion by seizing the role of a condemner.

Indeed one has to remember that younger theologians are inexperienced, however, alternatively do they have the purity of a fresh canvas for God's limitless work. On the other hand, older theologians have experience but a bias that limits God's work according to those experiences. While God makes both himself and his ways known to those who seek him (Matthew 7:7), the infinite is only understood to a degree in the finite.
This is in fact necessary: What is the value of knowledge if it is not concealed so that each man may seek in order to fulfill his own purpose? God as the creator of man, man as the creation of God - neither God nor man may receive glory without the concealment of knowledge. There was never any promise of theological perfection in this life nor is there a direct correspondence in revelations from God to one's years of experience; therefore, one should never cease the will for understanding under the notion that it has all been understood. The credit of wisdom goes to God who is not limited to man's idea of a mature mind. Ultimately, I will take the former over the latter, Mark 10:5 says, "Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it."

Ironically, fallacious diversions such as ad hominem attacks and self-authoritative appeals degrade one's own credibility, thus losing the respect allegedly deserved. Most importantly, 1 Timothy 4:12 is self-explanatory regarding the subject, "Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity."
God's word consistently seems to fall into the philosophically plausible position when interpreted from an unbiased position - the child's perspective is one of the most pure among man. Charles Baudelaire hinted this saying, "Genius is nothing more nor less than childhood recovered at will." Children have pure enough minds to ignore the standards and boundaries set my men/society, and this imaginative nature is a divine perspective due to the notion that only the boundaries set by God are ultimately relevant.

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