Monday 6 November 2023

Getting beyond the "expediency" framework of life's pleasure and suffering, entails re-framing the basic questions about God's plans

Many Christians, many people in general, approach the problem of human life in terms of a frame of its pleasures and sufferings - especially the sufferings. 

In other words, they primarily, as their main goal, seek to understand and explain - and find an answer for - the sufferings of 'the world'. 

This approach, while it may be spontaneous for Modern Man, is spiritually lethal; because it is an incoherent, hence insoluble - and in practice actively-harmful - way of understanding the world.   

I think we need to understand this world, this reality, from a starting point that assumed the reality of Man's agency, free will, capacity for autonomous motivation... 

And a reality in which Men are mixed in their nature; a mixture of Good-loving with evil (i.e. which opposes Good).

That is what God has to work-with in creation; and from-which Heaven must be made. 

God's creation includes Men with agency, and evil as well as Good - that is the starting-point.

And from such ingredients it is God's self-imposed task to build "Heaven" (a world of love). Heaven is to be made from a multitude of Men - each of whom just-is an agent, capable of choice and commitments. 

The question is how can God made a Heaven, using Men with agency who each 'contain' some evil - as well as loving motivations? 

Therefore; in creating Heaven God needs to work to encourage Men to choose to make the eternal commitment to live wholly and permanently by love: this outcome cannot be imposed on Men.

We cannot understand this up-front experienced world - including that we cannot understand human suffering - unless we understand 1. what God is trying to do with us, and 2. what God had to work-with. 

We need to understand God's aims and 'materials' as being related, bound-together, inextricably; by the nature of reality. 

Only thus can we grasp the meaning of the two great commandments: to love first God, then to love our 'neighbour'; to understand that these laws are a terse summary of God's great task in creation; and also a brief description of how it is that God can (in principle) make Heaven from a multitude of Men with innate agency...

Men who choose to commit-eternally to love God and the 'neighbours' (i.e. other men who have made the choice of Heaven) - are enabled to make this eternal-commitment by that resurrection - which was offered by the work of Jesus Christ. 

The result - among those who have made this choice - is Heaven. 


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