While I’m defending myself… (or how the Spirit works through time)
November 1, 2006
Because I advocate the idea that the Spirit can and continues to reveal the nature of God to us throughout time, I have been called a gnostic.
I’m not sure I follow that argument.
Now that I know more about gnosticism, I know that gnostics believe in a secret knowledge. They believe that the key to salvation is understanding. Now aside from the secret part, the understanding part doesn’t sound so bad. But they also believe that the material world is evil– that our bodies are bad– clearly I don’t believe that. They essentially come up with an almost polytheistic theology, something I don’t agree with, when they start to describe creation.
No, I’m not a gnostic.
And if you think that the whole of truth is contained within scriptures, then you haven’t studied your church history very well. The fact of the matter is that almost none of what we believe was formed in Biblical times. Jesus did not proclaim his divinity, nor the doctrine of the Trinity. He didn’t even say he was the Messiah. Other folks came up with all that stuff. So if you don’t believe that the Spirit reveals more of God’s truth to us over time, then you are surely undermining the very core beliefs of our own tradition.
And right here, right now, in this decade, I believe that the Spirit is revealing to us that gays and lesbians are welcome for the full inclusion at God’s table. If the canon closed and then we started to get revelations about these doctrines of Jesus which today make us Christian, then when did that revelation stop? With Augustine? Cranmer? Where?
Of course it doesn’t stop. It continues on forever, and the job of the church is to discern it. It doesn’t come easy. None of the fathers were embraced wholeheartedly- even the ones whose doctrines we treasure today as given orthodoxy.
Once again, I say that any other view is… revisionist.