Rob's Mission of God Statement  

Posted by rob the redbeard in

It is strange for me to think of myself in terms of Post-Restorationist, because part of me wants to respond (to myself,) “Hey, wait! We just got here to Restorationist!”

To make a spiritual autobiography cut to the chase – I was raised in a Catholic neighborhood in New York City, the son of two former clergy (a monk and nun) who were very spiritual liberal pacifist liberation-theology churchgoing christians. I had fantastic models of Christian living in my life, many of them clergy and former clergy (what we called “religious”…ugghh.) Jesus was pure love and good-stuff; there was no fire and no brimstone. I never heard most of the stories of the OT, considered eschatology or knew anyone who had been “born anew.” I’d only read the passages of the Bible that were read aloud during the liturgical-calendar readings, and what I was given to read in studying for my Confirmation.

At the age of 15, while working in our church rectory at nights, I realized that I did not believe in any of it, or God. I still took it seriously, though, so out of respect for the Mass, and the earnestness of people like my parents, I stopped going to church. There was another 15 years of that, with a brief and pathetic attempt at buddhism about halfway through that time. If someone called me an agnostic or a lapsed catholic, I would argue vociferously that I was neither. I was a secular humanist atheist.

To try to make a conversion story short, about seven years ago, I realized that I did, in fact, believe in God, and needed him in my life. I still was probably just a theist, until actually reading the Gospels, by myself (on the bus!) a number of times, which converted me to the Way. I was baptized in the Long Island Sound, with my house church family watching from the rocky little Bronx beach, on Easter Sunday 2006.

I have struggled, in my “amateur missiology,” to rectify the scriptural narratives of human origins with my strong belief in the general Truth of anthropology and biology. Without getting into the whole debate, I do believe that there are many passages in the apocalyptic writings of the OT and NT which point toward a restoration of an “original paradise,” but I cannot connect that desire and prophecy to my belief in the science of human origins, which would not ever allow for any time in early human history as having been better, in almost any way (with the possible exceptions of pollution and processed foods.) In terms of the ethics of God, it has never made sense to me that God’s Creation would be perfect, and then an immediate failure, that we and all of creation would continue to pay for the sin of Adam (or that this could be removed with a sacrament.)

I see, when I am true to my personal worldview, a general slow progression of morality and the practical application of “loving one another” in history. Finally reading the stories of the OT reinforced this view, the brutality and almost absurd immorality that was normal in the ancient world is described in detail in the Jewish scripture (although it is vividly described in pagan writings as well.)

In my view, God created a people, the Hebrews, through Abraham, who were ready for Him to intervene more directly, as a Witness for Him to the world. They also chose Him, though like most things in history, there was always the dialectic of a counter-force in their society. That counter-force was Satan, who always offered the hedonism and power-pride of the mystery cults. The mystery cults were the norm, but God re-cast them as the temptation of the Enemy. He was elevating the standards, guiding the moral progress of the peoples that He had chosen, at the crossroads of the Indo-European and African worlds, to be His Witness. (Isaiah 43:10)
People who were going to, for no apparent reason, write this struggle down and preserve it.

His Mission, in this age of human history, was to create a Witness to Himself, to speak through the Prophets and intervene more directly in the history of this people, so that their struggles and moral triumphs would speak to His true intention for humanity, which was far above His beautiful creation of Nature and the Cosmos. We are meant to be His triumph, because we, unlike the animals or plants, will have freely chosen to be better than we were before. Not out of competition or mutation, but rather out of collective Love and Reason.

Dare I say all of this… but I will…. His chosen people failed to even try to spread that Truth of Him and His need for a better humanity. Humanity needed a much more direct intervention, or the hedonism and power-lust of the Evil One would simply prevail, even within the chosen people. God was probably angered by the lack of effort to spread knowledge of Him, I am okay with that, but that anger, to me, would have to do with a certain….lack of understanding of His Creation. (I know that sounds heretical, but hear me out…)

How does the creator of the Universe know…what it is to not know? It creates a logical conundrum – how does an all-good omniscient Being know what it is to be a tempt-able, cosmically ignorant human? There is only one good, but still surprising, solution to that problem for God – Incarnation.

God came into this realm to be one of us, to tell us what He’d really wanted us to do, redirect the chosen people, and understand “where we are at.” He showed us the depths of His own self-sacrificial Love as a model for us to follow. He showed us what a true King is, not a lover of power and lust and control, but rather a Suffering Servant, one who conquers through self-assured Sacrifice. It became necessary for Him to plant the seed which offered the alternative Way to the way we were headed, the way of evil self-destruction.

In the End, as Jesus stated, many will still follow the Evil One, many already have, all of humanity is judged via the Inspiration behind Romans 2, and we are all judged by the Law which God has placed in our hearts, as humans. God’s Mission, and ours, as christians, is to increase the awareness of Him and His higher calling to moral Love and societal Justice. Many of us people will ignore this, and when God’s story reaches its climax, He will end it with a spectacular final scene; in which the opposing forces of Satan and Goodness will conflict in a way which will end all things as we know it, and judge what we know and have been. His Mission, christians know, is fulfilled in the Resurrection, that triumph which is reserved for His ultimate command of our story.
Then we will have our Eden.
This makes perfect sense….. to me. :>}

This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 14, 2009 at Tuesday, July 14, 2009 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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