Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Missing the Big Picture - C.S. Lewis

Sometimes people run across intellectual "stoppers." An intellectual stopper is an idea or pattern of thinking that does not jive with the way they understand the universe. For many, divine miracles are an intellectual stopper. If God exists and all physical properties flow from His existence, it would seem unnecessary if not a breakdown of His divine self-existence to even allow such miracles. From this conclusion, it isn't far at all to then suppose to begin to see God's existence as unnecessary altogether, for surely there are natural explanations for all phenomena. And if we don't know now, we will later (this is the postdated check of scientific naturalism..."we don't know, but surely we'll know later.")

C.S. Lewis' book Miracles goes a long way to address this faulty "intellectual stopper," as well as a myriad of others. Lewis writes, "If you have hitherto disbelieved in miracles, it is worth pausing a moment to consider whether this is not chiefly because you thought you had discovered what the story was really about?--that atoms, and time and space, and economics and politics were the main plot? And is it certain you're right? It is easy to make mistakes in such matters."

Lewis observes that the miracles of Biblical revelation are not anomalies within the space-time universe as such, but rather they are the precise moments in history on which all of God's grand story turns. The grand story begins with the Divine speaking life into darkness. The plot thickens when the Hebrews have the sea parted so they can be delivered out of Egypt. The story climaxes when the divine-Son rises from the dead, victorious over sin, death, and hell. And the story will close when all of creation (heaven, earth) is redone into the glory it was meant to have from the beginning. These miracles are not blips on the radar to distort God's established order; these miracles are the grand story itself.

Maybe the science of atoms, space, and the human world is not the grand story . . . maybe we aren't so brilliant and bright after all. Maybe humans need to quit writing their own story and read one written by Another.

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