Blessed Lord, who caused all Holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and the comfort of your Holy Word we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen. (From the Book of Common Prayer)

A classic Pelagian sentiment: God helps those who help themselves.

Nicene Creed

We believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible. \ And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, begotten from the Father before all ages, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made; of the same essence as the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven; he became incarnate by the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary, and was made human.

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The pridefulness and arrogance of the Positivists, going back to the Enlightenment but very apparent in today’s milieu of Scientism, is most apparent when they use their reductionistic epistemology to proclaim that their projects are untethered from Religion and Philosophy.

“Plato dreamed of a moral community that he was never able to actualize, but now this dream of a community had burst into reality. The center of this community was not, however, a philosopher from Athens. It was a Jewish teacher from Galilee whose works revealed him to be God enfleshed and who had now sent his Spirit to create the kind of community that Plato never could.” - Timothy Paul Jones

There are two views on human origins. One is high, the other is low. The high view has a poem that summarizes who human beings are:

So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them. \

The low view has its own poem:

Once I was an amoeba
Beginning to begin
Then I was a tadpole
With my tail tucked in
Then I was a monkey
Hanging from a tree
Now I’m a college professor
With a Ph.D!!!  \

There is a certain modern sentiment held by the cultural nominally religious, and even by the modern / postmodern Christian, that perceives of miracles as the idea that God intervenes in the course of natural events, and such events are unexplainable by scientific methodology or human reason making them violations of the law of nature. Atheists, of course, rail against those who accept this definition suggesting that it is nothing more than a “God of the Gaps” theory….and for a good reason. It is decidedly not Christian but pagan.

Classically, miracles are those events that spark wonder. The Christian response to this understanding is that miracles are those events that are accentuated distinct events of what God is already doing (and has always done) that produce awe in human beings for the purpose of bringing glory to the Father. Biblically, they are called signs and wonders. Functionally, there is no difference between God healing a man through the means of prayer than what God already does through the means of human beings who practice medicine. He is the author of both.

Augustine declared, “If Plato and the rest of the philosophers … were to come to life again and find churches full and temples empty… they would say, ‘This is what we didn’t dare teach to the people!… With the change of a few words and sentiments, they would become Christians”

Happy Hobbit Day!