Posted in a discussion of our symbiotic relationship with mites, this summarizes my position succinctly:
The biologists that rely upon strictly biochemical processes of evolution will never be able to calculate rates, because the forcing conditions have been lost in prehistory. I found it interesting to ask “why does every civilization develop the concept of a soul”, and eventually concluded that Darwin was half right: life is the co-evolution of spirit with biological form. The addition of spirit influences the choices made by living creatures, and so changes the rates.
Given this, I went back to Genesis and interpreted it as an incarnation (“The SPIRIT of God hovered over the waters” – and then became God for the rest of the book), with the “days” of creation reflecting the evolution of senses and forms that enabled Spirit to populate and explore the material conditions of its survival (photosensitivity, accommodation of hypotonic “waters above”, accommodation of arid conditions on the “land”, accommodation of seasons with sight (resolving specific sources of light), intelligent species in the waters and air, and mammals on earth (along with man)).
Couple this with the trumpets in the Book of Revelation, which pretty clearly parallel the extinction episodes identified by paleontology – including injection of the era of giant insects – and it looks like science and scripture actually support each other.
The only point of significant disagreement is spirit itself. Given my knowledge of the weaknesses of modern theories of cosmology and particle physics, I found myself considering the possibility of structure inside of the recognized “fundamental” particles. It became apparent to me that it wouldn’t be too difficult to bring spiritual experience into particle physics. To my surprise and delight, I became convinced that this reality is constructed so that love inexorably becomes the most powerful spiritual force.
“I became convinced that this reality is constructed so that love inexorably becomes the most powerful spiritual force.”
Yes, indeed! I don’t fully understand it, but our love and intention can make plants grow. We can impact the chemistry of many things around us. Love is a kind of energy.
And plants influence us as well. Their healing power is amazing!
Very nice again! Co-evolution of spirit and bio seems a good thought. Evolutionary theory and modern thought generally ignore form, then assume it, to discuss the efficient and material causes, only to conclude that they were right to reject the formal and final causes because the species evolve by a certain means. The mystery is form and purpose, and an account of efficient causes cannot demonstrate that these are unreal
The wing emerged by random variation in 3 or four, and only three or four places. The reason is the form of the environment, of earth and sky and the possibility of flight. Random variation and natural selection ignore the nature of the reality in which these occur. Life crawled out of the ocean only thrice, and back in once, with the most amazing results- land plants, insects, amphibians, then sea mammals go back in.
The seven days of the creation are agreed by both the bible and natural history, if only day four describes the view from earth when the sky cleared (because there could not, we think, be plants without sun). Otherwise, it is just what science teaches, and amazing that they got creatures of the third, fifth and sixth day correct and in the proper order!
The seven trumpets are a bit more serious. we may be between 5 and 6, their times telescoped rather than of equal extent. “That’s great, it starts with an earthquake,” says REM. Watch the 4/3 structure. The seven trumpets are in the seventh seal. The seven seals are within the seventh bowl. The first four trumpets may be a single event, since one could not happen without the others, maybe. Then 5,6,7, compare seals, trumpets and bowls What is the fifth seal? and what the trumpet? etc. How did the martyrs get under the throne? The first four seals? This occurred before the earthquake. And what it the cause of the crisis and the purpose of the book? 7 what, letters to seven churches, then what will happen “after this” 4:1. It is church history. That’s what we’re thinkin, anyway.
Nice to find someone able to think on both these topics!
I haven’t heard that chronology for the trumpets before. My own belief is that the age of man doesn’t begin until the angel stands with one foot on the land and the other in the sea. John being asked to eat the little scroll is the heavenly correlation of the Fall on Earth. The scroll is “the knowledge of good and evil.”
? What of all the men in chapters 1-9? These describe something before the Fall? What does the text itself say that its topic and purpose is? What reason is there to think of the ages this way, rather than anything else? Say, the first seven teams in the baseball standings? 10:7 reads that in the days of the trumpet of the seventh angel, “the mystery of God that he announced to his prophets should be fulfilled” Why not believe that there were prophets prior, and that in these days, the mystery of God that he announced to them would be fulfilled? Where else is the knowledge of good and evil mentioned in the scripture, and is this forbidden after Eden? What clues are we given about the content of the scroll, in contrast to the one eaten by Ezekiel? These texts are very serious, and a careful reading indicates how they are to be read, though people think all sorts of thing trying to read themselves into the text- not that that is what you are doing, but the question is why not do this, if the text does not indicate that we are to read these things in a different way? Have you heard this reading somewhere?
It is pretty clearly stated that John is taken up to heaven to visit the beings in whose image we are made. He interprets them as being men.
How would this imply that the age of men begins at chapter 10, or that the scroll is the knowledge of good and evil?
At 4:1, he looks and sees an open door in heaven.The voice then tells him to come up, and “I will show you what must take place after this.” So we think that what John is shown is what will take place after “this,” the things told to the churches about their conditions and their immediate future. So we think that the revelation from chapters 4 on is about what will happen regarding the churches (there is no church singular in the Revelation). Then he sees the throne in heaven and one seated on it, and 24 thrones and the 24 elders and the four living creatures. Just as we are not made in the image of other men, we are not made in the image of these, but in the image of God (Genesis 1:26; 9:6). One could read that these are a part of God. But why would this imply that the age of men begins at chapter ten? What do you have in mind by the “age of men?” Do you mean the time when men came to dominate the earth, like a few thousand B.C, or perhaps the time when the divine recedes to allow men to rule the world, causing disaster? But this has already begun through the sixth trumpet. You see, I wonder who told you men were made in the image of a plurality, or that “us” in Genesis means not the royal “we” but that we are made in the image of the elders and the four living ones as well as in the image of God (Gen. 9:6). Is the image of God that is man even mentioned in the Revelation? So you see, these seem like teachings that come from elsewhere, perhaps given for a purpose other than to read and understand the text. That is much more common than a patient attempt to read the text, that is, people who want to use the text as an instrument do not take time to read it, which is indeed very difficult. The Witnesses, for example, read that the 144,000 is their own “John class,” but none of this stuff is in there, and they want to use the text to make a group apart.
Here’s another post for your to consider: https://everdeepening.com/2015/11/20/revelation-abuse/. I can also offer my book The Soul Comes First, which considers the nature of the angelic existence in more depth.
But it really boils down to this statement: Jesus interpreted many things in the Old Testament that others could not because he was there to do the work. The work was not just to save Humanity from sin, but to “remake heaven and earth.”
The Book of Revelation opens the door to the first aspect of the work – it describes the angels’ experience of and relationship with Christ. I know this because I have become deeply caught up in “the work.” In other words, what I write is not from the minds of men, but from the heart of Christ.
Good, then ask the owner of the heart how to demonstrate from the text that it is about something other than “what comes after this,” or that the purposes stated in the text are not the real purposes of the text! Jesus told the apostles to spread the gospel, and, as we tell the Catholic theologians, and little else. “Do this in remembrance of me” He did not, for example tell them to establish obligatory doctrine, to rule the world before he comes, or to burn heretics. Paul too said “we have the mind of Christ,” and also said now we see “as through a glass darkly, (katoptridzomenoi). Is this scientology or something? Why give our minds up to any human authority, to say we belong to Paul or John, etc, as Paul notes? The Catholics too have the best claim for their authority, the Apostolic succession, and when they exclude the Greek orthodox from sacraments, we think it is a joke-if a bit of a serious one! Since rejecting Rome, every sect imitates Rome in giving itself authority. The Baptists excommunicate people for drinking wine, not because Jesus taught abstinence from alcohol, but because of the U. S. Temperance movement.
Does the heart of Jesus not know whether Putin is the antichrist, or how to read Daniel, with the three images together, etc.? The fact is that this stuff is very hard, and rather than claim a certainty that has no basis in scripture, we find the Socratic claim to know that he does not know or possess divine wisdom to be a truer basis, and a replacement for the claim of every church to certain knowledge just because, what, we cannot stand to be ignorant, and could not hold authority over the flock if they knew we did not know? I will go for those references, though, and look forward to your book. I am sure you mean something by age of man” that I haven’tt figured out yet!
I will not argue with you on a doctrinal basis, because you miss my point. I am doing spiritual work in the world that is informed by my reading. I share my interpretation because I hope that it will empower others similarly. If you do not find it so empowering, so be it. I am not trying to establish a church, I ask nothing from anyone. I seek to heal the world – all of it.
Oh come on, your not really the Big Cheese himself, are you? It must help with the girls plural though, eh? I mean, why talk about evolution when your doin it! Shake yourself out of it by noticing your nearest error. Repent, and turn toward the Lord. Do you think you killed that guy, and you are proud and feel empowered? Power is not the goal of any Christian. Enough.
You know nothing about me, or about my behavior. Your words are therefore slander not befitting of a Christian.
I am that which I am. I experience relation with the world as described by Tagore:
Power said to the world, “You are mine.”
The world kept it confined to the world.
Love said to the world, “I am yours.”
She gave it the freedom of her house.
So when I say that I seek to heal all the world, what that means is that my heart is an open door that turns no sorrow away. I will heal as much of it as I can, and if it finds me an agent that can serve in healing all of it, I will submit to that service even though it destroy me.
And I have been celibate for these last fifteen years because living according to these parameters has required that of me.
I am re-reading The Soul Comes First, and find [NIV Gen 1:26]:
Let us make man in our image.
The plural seems to be the royal “we,” (which I abuse to avoid saying I all the time!). Genesis 9:6 repeats the teaching. Another possibility is the mysterious bride. John is told not to bow before the angel, who is a fellow servant, as would not be so if John were made in the image of the angel. Good, though, this is some hard stuff!
When I was a child, my fear of loneliness often caused me to use “we”, and my father was accused me of using it in the royal sense. In this context, I tend to see the singular “God” as arising in packaging by the priestly class.
But the point of “Revelation Abuse” is this: does our interpretation of scripture lead us into fear or toward inspiration fired by hope? A local pastor propagated the common interpretation of Revelation, and every time we had a report of a asteroid passing I would have to fight off dreams of disastrous impacts with projections that Revelation was being fulfilled. One night I finally intervened, just completely shutting the projection down and firmly admonishing “Stop! Just stop! You don’t understand Revelation!” I went by his congregation two months later and found a young man in the pulpit Apparently the senior pastor had suffered a debilitating stroke.
Now this may sound like bragging, but think on this: which version of the “truth” was more powerful? The one that brought fear, or the one that offered hope?
The one that tries to read the text, preferably in Greek (the King James uses “Beast” to translate both Zoa (the living creatures) and Thareon, the beast, though there are very few other errors. A sparrow does not fall without his “will” is really without his presence. He does not intend it, but he is there.
Pop psych offers less fear than either, so why not leave the whole Revelation aside and do pop psych? The rapture is not even in the text of John, so the Baptist put that at 4:1, so as to offer more hope and less fear. Again, not the Biblical standard.
It does start with an earthquake, at the sixth seal. And according to Amos, we do not want to see the Day of the Lord.