Faith in the Illogical: The Evolution of a Relative God and Its Theology

The major problem with Christian theology is that it is so confusing and contradictory from what we learn and experience in everyday reality of life, that one is forced to either simply give up or rely on faith in order to follow it.


Just an objective casual reading of the English Bible reveals an evolving god based in a limited cultic setting of Canaan who is bound in a contract called a “covenant” to a small group of people know as the Hebrews. This a covenantal contract that binds all these local Hebrew is a standard ancient Near Eastern type of covenant that binds all gods of the neighboring areas to their chosen Semitic people also.

But one thing is clear; as Yahweh grows, so must the theology that defines him. This is easily seen in the J and E accounts of Genesis as later edited by P in order to keep God relevant and up to date.

Plus, this ancient god has a number of different names in Hebrew, but the ancient use of Yahweh (J) and God (E) are his major titles especially in the limited god of Genesis 3 who walks, talks and has limited knowledge (God has to ask Adam and Eve what happened (Gen. 3) and latter, Cain where Able is? (Gen. 4).

What we have is the old classic question: Which came first: The Chicken or the Egg? Or, as applied here: Which came first: God or Theology? For the objective mind, logic shows that as theology advances or changed, the concept of God also advances and changes. What theology shows is that humans learn by their past religious mistakes and put out new editions of God.

Even if one does not follow the editing of the Hebrew text into J,E,P,D and their subtexts, one is soon faced with the fact that the god of the Patriarchs is not the same God found in Second Isaiah (40 - 66), nor the God to the nations as preached by the Later Prophets. When theology moves on; so must Yahweh.

It is when we get to the New Testament with its Greek language pregnant with Greek philosophical terms and concepts that the old god Yahweh has now completely faded into an ancient past and a new revised theology emerges from the Hebrew Bible as translated into the Septuagint (LXX) which is itself quoted in the so called New Covenant / Testament. Now the limited Yahweh ceases to exists and what is left metamorphose into the Classical Greek term Theos or what know as “God” universal.

To shorten this post and stimulate discussion, I would like to engage the human mind in some basic fundamentals of logic with the underlying question focused on how Christians live their daily lives on one level of logic, which could cost them their lives if not followed closely, only to accept the illogics of evolved theology which one must force one’s brain accept illogically by faith grown denial just to worship this concept call “God“.

So here are some questions about this God at Passover (Easter) drawn from my everyday logic: (Take a shot at one or more)

A. If Jesus knowingly went up to Jerusalem at Passover to die, did Jesus commit suicide? If not, why not? Can a human suicide be an acceptable sacrifice?

B. If Jesus and God are ONE (Incarnation), did God commit suicide with Jesus or did the doctrine of the Incarnation cease at the time of the crucifixion as believed by some ancient Christian heresies? (In other words, did God “jump ship” and, if so, when?)

C. If it grieved God to have to give up his only begotten son, Jesus; how did God get himself into this “Catch 22” situation? If he can’t get out of his own theological sin trap, is the old local Hebrew god Yahweh (who is now become the universal God in the New Testament (and especially in Paul)) subordinate to another even higher GOD to whom this God must take his marching orders from?

D. Can Christian theology finally become so contradictory and illogical that it will be rejected (as atheists do now) or will it require more and more faith just to counter the increasing illogics of its theology as our own tangible world becomes more logical? Will the only answer to the illogics of Christian Theology be the rapidly increasing growth of Christian sects and cults (over 20,000 now) where all are trying to make logical sense out of the all this illogical theology (where most are claiming to have been given the real truth as a way to proselytizes converts)?

E. In short, will the evolution of God and theology ever stop?

12 comments:

Rover said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rover said...

Challenging thoughts Harry. But isn't there honor in the "suicide" of Jesus? I am thinking of the soldier who throws himself on a grenade to save his friends. But I suppose in this case the soldier would be throwing himself on his own grenade...hmmm

Chuck O'Connor said...

Rover,

Your question begs another question in me, did I ever ask Jesus to throw himself on the grenade? If you and I were in war then we both volunteered through duty to protect a mutually agreed upon idea and would be willing to lose our lives to that idea. I don't think you or I ever made such an agreement with Jesus and I am fairly certain that I have not done anything nor am capable of anything that would merit the death penalty so, Christ's substitution for my sins renders two potential truths 1) It is a 1st century customary legend regarding god an enlightenment 2) god is a cruel dude who has no sense of proportionality. 1 is more favorable than 2 for me.

Harry McCall said...

Roven, in theology it’s truly odd how the human mind works.

Your “grenade’ theory is a two edged sword. While Jesus’ suicidal death saves, let say one-third who accept it (salvation), this so-called act of love of Jesus also just sent the other two-thirds straight to Hell forever! "Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.” Matt 7: 13.

So, in your heroic grenade theory, while Jesus dies saving some, he pulls out another grenade and throws it at the majority of people blowing them straight to Hell!

Harry McCall said...

Vacuum cleaner salesman and Christianity have one major thing in common:

They create a need for their product by controlling the knowledge while at the same time subjectively educating the consumer.

Eternal Truths said...

Harry,

I've thought more about the "suicide" of Jesus and think we could call it suicide, but it lacks genuineness. Jesus knew He would not really die, but that He would rise again. Even during his 'death,' he descended to the lower regions to make a proclamation to those in spiritual prison (1 Peter 3:18-20). Now, how is that fair to have people in 'spiritual prison' before they had the chance to accept or reject Jesus? hmmm.

Related to this, my biggest roadblock to Christianity is the irreconcilability of an infinitely perfect God setting up the world in such a way that requires human freewill. For this scenario provided the following consequences: the potential for human evil, a heaven and hell dichotomy, and natural disasters.

As a defender of the faith I would respond by saying that love and goodness could not exist without its opposite. If we did not know evil, we could not recognize good. Existing as robots would not be as preferable to possessing freewill. However, now I have reconsidered this and think freewill causes many problems for the supposed infinitely perfect God of the Bible.

Another problem I have, which I write about on my blog deals with the issue of God desiring or wanting humanity to choose Him as their Savior. If God desires or wants anything, this points to a lack. Whenever anyone desires something, they do not currently have it. God cannot lack anything, but when we place anthropomorphic qualities upon God, it contradicts His infinitely perfect character. Given this, I think Christianity like all religions could be human made.

Harry McCall said...

Eternal Truths

I’ll have to check out your blog.

Theology is a human attempt to make God logical or, as the word implies Theo (God) logical (Making sense).

Theology does not have to be factual or correct, it must meet the orthodox (ortho) “correct” and (dox) “teaching” to be logical in Christian dogma.

Since the God of the Bible is not correct in a number of Biblical books, the human religious mind can mold a concept of good / perfect called God to create an illusion of divine perfection.

In the end, whatever we claim our concept of God is, it only functions that way in our mind to bring us subjective inner peace.

Does this theological concept transcend time and space to help creation? Only if we have created the right theology to make our God concept logical.

This is why an unquestioning faith based on dogmatic doctrines is so important in Christianity: To many concepts of God spoils the pie.

Unlike in the real world, no matter how you created your God concept, or what concepts you employ, you will never be sued for fraud!

Have a Great Easter / Passover!

Zaib said...

If Jesus was born without a father, thus becomes son of God, then why isn't Adam also considered the son of God?

Daniel said...

Hey,
i just came upon this entry and wanted to make a few comments.

i don't follow your logic about Yahweh growing along with a changing theology.
yes, Yahweh was given many names, but these are translated into different characteristics that describe his relationship with us.
for example, "Elohim" points towards God's "strength" or "power."
about God asking Adam what happened. God was not in the dark about the situation (and i do not believe in "testing" since God knows what the outcome will be). this "asking" might have been to spurn a sense of shame in Adam that would ultimately lead to Adam's repentance. Also, about God walking, it could basically mean that God was present in the Garden of Eden.
The same goes for Cain. Perhaps God merely wanted to let Cain know how terrible the deed was.
The Bible can't always be taken literally otherwise the whole thing would be in a hot mess. What's important is the intent of each passage.
and your further arguments are also flawed. God does not change, but the circumstances do. i don't claim to know everything, but in the Old Testament, God seems to be crueler than in the New Testament, but that could be explained by the vast amount of direct intervention of God in the Old Testament. If the people of the Old Testament were so unwilling to believe after witnessing so many miracles, would it be fair that modern people meet the same end despite the lack of supernatural events occurring throughout the world?

To address your questions:
1. like a previous commenter said, Jesus knew that he would be resurrected so would that count as suicide? i don't think this is a very good question since the whole event is so complex. suicide probably isn't a good term.

well i don't have much time left.
so basically to answer your fourth and fifth questions. where do you find the illogical notions of Christianity and the Bible? i find that science and Christianity have much more in common than most people believe. there is absolutely no conflict in the Bible with evolution and many other discoveries of science. i must say that i believe God did create human beings separately and outside of evolution, but that is only my speculation and God can do whatever he pleases. about the large amount of Christian "sects" or "cults": even i, as a Christian, find that they are unnecessary and i side with you in how ridiculous it has become. but at the same time, these differences typically have no conflicts with the fundamentals of Christian beliefs and if they do conflict then i have to confess that i don't believe that those sects that have conflicting ideas (such as about Jesus being the Son of God and his resurrection and all) harbor true Christians.

anyways, God cannot "evolve," but theology can since it is merely our understanding and perceptions of this God.

roxane said...

1. Suicide means a person chooses to die rather than continue living. Jesus was sent to his death by the people who considered him blasphemous. As a human, he too experienced fear and unwillingness but as a person who has a relationship with God, he knew that was part of God's plan and he yielded.

All these arguments and logic just goes to show how human you are in trying to understand things in the physical realm - things that you can see and touch, while all the time ignoring things that are spiritual. If you have never genuinely invited the Holy Spirit into your life, obviously you will never experience things of the spiritual and obviously you will continue to have problems reconciling christian theology.

the best way i can explain from my own personal experience is that Christianity is not a detached religion where you sit back and analyse God to death - it's a relationship that needs to be developed, as we can see from the Old and New Testament. People either choose to have a relationship with God, where they then knew what grieved Him, what pleased Him, what He was like.

People who chose to reject God (like the Pharisees who ultimately cruxified Jesus) continued rejecting Him even when Christ performed tons of miracles in front of them!

I say to all these arguments: even if God were to try to prove Himself to you - you wouldn't believe it because you will continue to argue it away anyway.

to those who really want to experience God - obviously you'd just have to ask and start a relationship with Him to do so.

Things are just that simple.

MaxxSteelTheGOD said...

You Christians either love to LIE or be ignorant. How do u dare claim there is no conradictions with the bible? Here's a few off the top of my head lol
1- The SUN is the first thing created in our solar system. The bible has the earth FIRST.
2- Evolution says we did NOT come from a single pair of people ( besides the fact that is INCEST )
3- The bible also says ALL plants are edible, science has discovered POISON ivy,oak,etc.
4- The bible also claims Adam was the 1st man and he was created 6,000 years ago. Science along with documented history proves man
has been around for 10's of thousands of years more than that.
5- Science has also proved the earth is NOT FLAT.
6 - The sun does not revolve the earth, its vice versa.
those are just a few ;-)
You might wanna actually READ your Bible.
Then again, dont do that. u might end up like ME - an EX-Christian

MaxxSteelTheGOD said...

Smh. i dont know whats sadder, what u wrote or that u might really believe it lol