Friday, February 26, 2010

God as novelist

Pastor Philip Spomer

Remember we’re not talking about anything false or merely apparent. This is because God is so much greater than us. Many objections, or conundrums, which we would have were we dealing with a finite power, do not apply.

A metaphor I often use in Bible classes goes like this. Take a novel that is placed in an historical setting, say, Gone With the Wind. The time surrounds the Civil War, say six years. If its author, Margaret Mitchell, were to say that she wrote it over a period of five months, it wouldn’t make sense to object by saying that it must have been six years in the making.

Of course Gone With the Wind is a fiction, but Margaret Mitchell is only a human being. God calls forth reality even from nothing. God writes our universe from without our universe.


  1. Hi T-bloggers,

    This is somewhat related and somewhat off-topic. On the referenced thread, I asked a Catholic the following and he responded with the following. I don't really understand his response. Do you?

    [Me] “Craig Payne,

    I.e., Would you agree that there are differing private interpretations of Genesis among Catholics? And would you also agree that the Magisterium permits these differing private interpretations among Catholics?

    Yes and Yes?”

    [Craig Payne] Dear TUAD: No and no. The term “private interpretation” refers to the belief that every individual Christian may legitimately hold his or her own views of Scripture without regard to the teachings of the Church. It is a specific term found in the Bible, and its exercise the Catholic Church (in accordance with the Bible itself) maintains is wrong. However, I would imagine other Christians outside of the CC have no problem with it: every man his own Pope, and so on.

    However, in areas which have not been officially pronounced upon, there is some latitude, and fellow Christian should maintain charity regarding interpretations they think of as wrong. So I would accept your way of expressing it as long as the technical term “private interpretation” (a theological term) is changed: Yes, Catholics have different interpretations of the Creation story, and yes, since the Magisterium hasn’t pronounced that any one interpretation is the “official” one, it is permissible. If this is what you are asking, fine with me."

  2. "It is a specific term found in the Bible, and its exercise the Catholic Church (in accordance with the Bible itself) maintains is wrong."

    This is a gross misinterpretation of 2 Peter 1:20.

  3. T-bloggers,

    I was wondering if someone would link to Michael Brown's final volume of Answering Jewish Objections to Jesus (Vol. 5) being sold here:

    And the first 85 pages or so are free online here:

    The topic of the volume is the Rabbinic idea of 'Oral Torah'. I thought that it might be helpful since the claims made by Rabbinic Jews in regards to 'Oral Torah' parallel the claims of Roman Catholics and the Eastern Orthodox with regard to 'Sacred Tradition'.

  4. Have you read Godawa's new research paper at the BIOLOGOS website?

    Cosmogony, Combat and Covenant