Some people have never outgrown their mothers ideas. These ideas were a product of their time and circumstance and as such were far from an informed picture of the way things were, even in her day. Nevertheless they were her ideas and they became seeded into the intellectual soil of her children.
Some grow out of the limited ideas of their parents but others never do. They live in their mothers notions and views of the world and pass them on to their children as if they are truth. But they never were truth and are certainly not now. They become a heavy yoke that is quite different to the yoke and burden of Jesus that is light and empowering.
The truth seeded to us by Jesus into the soil of our culture is far better than many have imagined. We should never fear the advance of truth even when it threatens our favourite ideas and our sense of identity and security. Truth always has better ideas and a more noble identity than anything that has evolved under the accumulation of doctrines whose source is the perpetuation of the humbug of the Fall.
Jesus warned us against the appearance of false christs and Paul followed the same line of thought when he warned of ‘other gospels’ and the curse that we would invoke on ourselves if we became seduced by them.
Anything that makes Jesus less than He is makes Father less than He is and us less than we are. The result is a degraded self and withered church. Pseudo truths are always some rehash and revisiting of the lies of the fall.
WHO IS TRUTH?
Truth is not an abstraction. Truth is the person of Jesus, the trinity and our place in it. Truth is relationship with God as it is and as it has been formed by the actions of God in creating and redeeming humanity and the earth. Thomas Torrance writing on the supreme truth of the church as understood by the Church Father’s observes.
“The basic decision taken at Nicaea made it clear that the eternal relation between the Father and the Son in the Godhead was regarded in the Church as the supreme truth upon which everything else in the Gospel depends.
Jesus Christ is himself the content of God’s unique self-revelation to mankind. It is on the ground of what God has actually revealed of his own nature in him as his only begotten Son that everything else to be known of God and of his relation to the world and human beings is to be understood.
It is only when we know God the Father in and through his Son who belongs to his own being as God that we may know him in any true and accurate way, that is, know God strictly in accordance with his divine nature.” (1)
Jesus is one with God and is God. You are in Jesus Christ and as a result you are one with God. Inclusion, oneness with God is the law of the spirit of life that Paul cites. It’s not the law of Moses which Paul plainly describes as ‘the letter that kills.’ When we make this mode our ‘life’ we join that unfortunate tribe of Believers known as the ‘dead men walking’.
The issue for each of us in our lives is ‘Who am I?’ And the answer is ‘I am who I am in God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Descartes stated, ‘I think, therefore I am’ and did us all a service because it exposed the truth that we become what we think we are and create our own reality in line with our beliefs. This means that we need the truth as it is in God and should dispense with cunningly devised fables and immerse ourselves in the truth relationship of the new covenant which is Christ for us, Christ in us, Christ as us and all that is Christ’s belongs to us. Paul declares this in the words,
“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. “I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly’ Gal 2.20-21 NIV.
Torrance cautions us against ‘off-shoots’ and other gospels. He helps us focus on the core truth of living: The nature of God, the gospel of the Kingdom and the nature of ourselves. Answers to these questions are framed in opposition to the narrative deployed by Satan. Father is not what He seems, humans are less than you have been told you are and you will find your real selves in independence of God. All bad theology is a variation in this theme.
God’s theology of Himself as revealed and demonstrated in the life of Jesus is that Father is more wonderful than we could imagine. He is totally trustworthy. By deploying His plan we are drawn into the fellowship of the trinity and in this communion of being and spirit we are nurtured and revealed as the sons and daughters of God.
(1) Torrance, Thomas F.. The Trinitarian Faith: The Evangelical Theology of the Ancient Catholic Church (T&T Clark Cornerstones) (p. 3). Bloomsbury Publishing. Kindle Edition.