We like explanations, or perhaps more correctly, we don’t like unexplained things. There is nothing wrong with this, of course, it is part of what makes us human. But what do we do when there is no explanation?
This happens quite frequently when we read Scripture. There are many, many things we can’t explain especially when we try to insist texts written hundreds and thousands of years ago conform to our current fashions in writing. This is an ongoing challenge for anyone with an “Enlightenment” mind, which is most Western people. We think numbers, durations, quantities, recorded in any writing are exact, but they are not. The current mania for atomistic precision is very new to human beings and isn’t even universally valued now.
This Sunday’s texts present us with three things we can’t really explain using current science without resorting to calling them hallucinations, mental illness, or lies. But what if they are none of those. We don’t have to explain them but we can talk about them and what they mean and why they are there. My goal for this sermon was to give us a better way of thinking about Scripture than simplistic twenty and twenty-first-century thinking.
As always, let me know if I did what I’ve said I was trying to do . . . or didn’t even come close.