Posted 20 Feb 2013
You have a favourite tool in your toolbox. You prefer to use that tool. You love to use that tool. You get such a high from using that tool that you use it to the exclusion of all other possible tools. Besides, “everyone else” only ever uses that tool, & they can’t all be wrong, right?! You grew up using that tool. All your school teachers & university professors told you that this one tool was the ONLY tool for the job, ANY job. In fact, they sneered if you even mentioned any other tool. They told you repeatedly that no other tool was up to the job; no other tool would ever out perform the One Tool! They told you that you were silly, uneducated, pathetic, if you DIDN’T use the One tool.
So now, naturally, you only ever use that one tool in your tool box, even when the job at hand calls for a completely different tool!
What is the “Perfect” Tool in your toolbox? Hellenistic thinking, Greek thinking. Logic & reason. Science as the only viable answer. We call it the Western mind-set.
I’m not pouring scorn on the One tool, the Western mind-set. I use it a lot myself! It’s a great tool, & no mistake.
BUT… it’s NOT the only tool in the toolbox. There are others.
Are there any alternatives to the One tool?
Are there any other tools in the toolbox?
What might some of the other tools be?
Abstract thought. Poetry. Nonsense poetry. The Hebrew (Hebraic) mind set. Australian Aborigine thinking. Actually there are a lot of alternative mind sets & ways of thinking other than the Western mind-set.
The Bible is largely written from a Hebrew (Hebraic) mind set, so reading it with a Greek (Western) mindset may not bring out all the subtle language inflections originally intended.
1 Corinthians 1:21-23 (NLT) – ‘Since God in his wisdom saw to it that the world would never know him through human wisdom [Greek thinking – MY added], he has used our foolish preaching to save those who believe. It is foolish to the Jews, who ask for signs from heaven. And it is foolish to the Greeks, who seek human wisdom. So when we preach that Christ was crucified, the Jews are offended and the Gentiles [Greeks] say it’s all nonsense.’
These verses show WHY to those who insist on remaining within Greek thinking mode, the preaching of Christ crucified appears to be nonsense: it requires something OTHER THAN Greek thinking (logic, reason, science) to fully appreciate the “foolishness” of the Gospel. It requires another tool in the toolbox: FAITH.
Hebrews 11:1 (ANIV) – ‘Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.’
The Greek mind set is only comfortable with, & believes in, what we can see, taste, touch, hear, etc. That which is unseen, mysterious, un-provable, is rejected as nonsense in Greek thinking. Hence the death of a man on a cross as a means to save me from my sins sounds foolish to the Greek (Gentile) mind.
But the Lord God has granted us the gift (tool) of faith, to take us BEYOND merely the provable & observable. Faith enables us to move, be & do things that the Greek (Gentile) mind would not believe as being possible.
Questions to ask yourself.
Do you want to live your entire life using only one tool?
Do you want to live your life tied exclusively to the One tool?
Do you actually want to live your life within the straightjacket of the One tool?
There is so much more to experience in this life, but that requires deliberately putting the one tool of Greek thinking (the Western mindset) down, & picking up another tool instead.
The One tool of Greek thinking is DEEPLY ingrained in the western mind set. Our education systems have used that One tool for centuries, we are soaked in it, so it is not easy to give up something we have been using all our lives. But God can give us faith, & a different mind set, a different experience, if we ask Him for it.
There are many dusty, long-forgotten, foreign, unused, unusual, mysterious tools available.
Do we trust these others tools? If we do, we can start to use them, if we don’t we won’t.
Faith is another tool in the toolbox… a great one to use!
Faith is something which is antithetical to Greek thinking. But Faith is a gift from God, which we can possess in bucket loads, if we simply ask God for that gift!
Hebrews 11:6 (ANIV) – ‘And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.’
This verse shows that faith is the means by which we recognise the existence of God, & the means by which we approach God & operate in ways that please Him. In turn, God rewards those people who deliberately use their faith to earnestly seek him.
I’m aware that I am beginning to use Greek thinking again, in the construction of these sentences: one built on the arguments presented in previous sentences! Greek thinking is clearly well ingrained in us all! However, I pray that God will grant you the mysterious & powerful gift of FAITH, which transcends Greek thinking & can take you to places you have only dreamed of.
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