A Caricature of God

A few years ago a very talented teacher of the Bible named Rob Bell went off the reservation with his book, Love Wins: Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived. Bell’s book tapped into a trendy, but by no means new, theological view called Universalism. I have not read the book, but I have read enough about it to know what I need to know. 

If Rob Bell is now a Universalist or some flavor thereof, I’m confident he didn’t arrive at that view from a rigorous study of the Bible. Universalists never do. They get there by elevating their own view of God over the God of the Bible. 

“How could a loving God send people to Hell?,” they ask. It’s a serious question, but an incomplete one. One could as easily ask, “How could a just God not send people to Hell?” 

Continue reading “A Caricature of God”

Seine River Cruise Travel Journal—Day 3

Monet's The Water Lily Pond
Monet’s The Water Lily Pond

What is Truth?

It is the question Pontius Pilate asked Jesus, and it is the question prompted by our visit this morning to Claude Monet’s home in Giverny, France.

We toured Monet’s home, his flower garden, and his famous water garden. Monet’s paintings of his water garden are famous.

Monet’s impressionism style is noted not for delineating the subject of his painting but for his use of brush strokes to create in the observer’s eye an experience of variations of light. In Monet’s Impressionism, the realism of the scene portrayed in the painting was subordinated to the subjective impression of the observer of the painting.

Impressionism was a movement away from classical realism and toward abstract art. Impressionism was followed by the progressively more abstract Post-Impressionism of Van GoghFauvism of Matisse, and  Cubism of Picasso, ultimately ending with the truly abstract art of Jackson Pollock, who would literally sling paint randomly onto the canvas. In the end, the object of the painting was lost and the observer’s subjective experience of the painting became everything. Continue reading “Seine River Cruise Travel Journal—Day 3”

Miracle or Fairy Tale?

As a trial lawyer, I’ve spent my career learning how to tell when someone is lying to me.

Having now practiced law for over twenty years, I’ve developed an ear for the truth. It’s an important skill, particularly when working on a contingency fee.

When I take a case I’m taking a risk that could involve as much as three years and $125,000 of my time. If I can’t tell a potential client is lying to me before I take the case, by the time I do, my loss can be substantial.

I found it interesting then when reading the story about the blind man whom Jesus healed in the Gospel of John, that I came across a certain verse. Continue reading “Miracle or Fairy Tale?”