The longest held scientific theory ever was that of a geocentric universe. It worked. Sailors used it for centuries to move about the earth. The idea that the stars and sun rotated about us had to be right. Everyone saw the sun come up in the morning and go down at night. Then came Copernicus and Galileo. And science changed. True science is not about absolutes. True science is having the best understanding of current data.
Albert Einstein in an endeavor to understand the nature of the universe declared there was a cosmological constant. Years later he called it his “greatest mistake.” What if we approached religion with the same openness? What if instead of declaring we are right and others are wrong, we said, what I believe is the best understanding of what I yet know about God?
Proverbs 4:18 says, “The path of the righteous is like the morning sun, shining ever brighter till the full light of day.” I have met those who say that means I have truth and more truth will be added. But what if it meant some of what I thought was truth needs to be revised in the new light? This can be a bit frightening. We need a psychological and spiritual anchor for mental health. However, might it be more mentally healthy to live with some ambiguity than to live being positively in error?
I don’t want to sound like everything is up for grabs. There are absolutes. God is love. Jesus died for us. We are saved by grace. That grace enables us to begin living for eternity right now. These are key, but they are dimly lit understandings of deeper intellectual and spiritual treasures yet to be grasped. There is so much to learn. There is so much joy ahead.
Written by Roger Bothwell on January 28, 2016