Monday, March 28, 2011

Major in life, with a minor in knowledge

When Adam and Eve were in paradise they enjoyed the luxury of what we might call a "simple life". There was very little they had to ponder in terms of their existence. Morally, their life was one of "values" and "anti-values", as Michael Rosenak put it. God placed two trees in the garden, one was a tree of life, and the other was a tree of knowledge. For Adam and Eve there was no angst over, "to be, or not be." For them "to eat, or not to eat" -that was the question.

All of us know how the story ends, but what I want to focus on is how the story begins. When God made man, He obviously felt that above all else man should have life. Society has assumed just the opposite. In the eyes of the secular, knowledge is power, but in the eyes of God you receive power after that His Spirit comes upon you (regardless of how much you know). I don't consider myself an anti-intellectual by any means, but I do believe that Life trumps knowledge, and that Life should be mankind's chief pursuit.
The Apostle Paul lamented in Romans 7, that in spite of his knowledge of what was his right, he still did what was wrong. He then begins to bemoan the "body of death" that housed his soul and intellect, and asks the question, "who shall deliver me?"  It's in chapter 8 however, that Paul introduces the vaccine to his vexation by stating, "There is no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit."
One of the beauties of Christianity is that it values life first, even to the extent that its central figure {Jesus} would die so that His followers could have it. Life is not the same as existence, Life is actually a person-His name is Jesus.  Having Jesus in our lives will undoubtedly result  in us becoming more knowledgeable, but most importantly, it results in us being able to discern whats even worth knowing.

"For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified."
Paul's epistle to the church in Corinth


Anonymous said...

I can't remember if I was watching a documentary or if I read it in a news article. But, a muslim Jihadist said the difference between Americans and Jihadists is that Americans value their lives and Jihadists don't, they aren't afraid to die for what they believe in. I thought wow, even though they are pretty messed up for killing innocent people and committing suicide bombings, we need to not be afraid to lose our life as martyrs for Christ. After reading this blog entry though I now feel better that my natural instict is to value life, my life and others since like you said God died to give us life in Him.

-Debbie Arroyo

The Prados said...

I remember a comment made by Osama Bin ladin some time ago along the same lines. Our love and appreciation for life is undoubtedly something that makes us both weak, and strong.

A. Prado