Internal and External
Some thoughts are bouncing around internally…about the relationship between internal and external things.
I used to think Liberation Theology was really cool. Today there is a big kosher/vogue push to see the political-revolutionary Jesus in our Christianity and to apply the teachings of Christ to our governments’ actions and the actions of us individuals in response to issues on an international scale. Now, I’m not gonna say that this is necessarily wrong or incorrect…but I WILL say that it is extremely dangerous if we turn Christianity into a social philosophy. Christianity is a religion and we must not forget that.
Christianity, as I humbly understand it, is supposed to change me – internally and externally. But I do not think it can change society as a whole externally. Fr. Maximos brings out this concept in Mountain of Silence when he informs the author that the beatitudes were not, are not, and never should be understood as being a political or sociological speech. They are instead a description of the characteristics naturally manifested by one who unites his or herself with God. Jesus came, we are told, not to heal society but to heal the individual.
It is a very grave error to mistake the Kingdom preached by our Lord as an earthly utopia that we can somehow by the might of our will bring into existence…He Himself taught:
The kingdom of God does not come with observation; nor will they say, “See here!” or “See there!” For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.
Well, I don’t know to what extent it is in me, but I know that is THERE that I need to look for it. Trying to find it in the election ballot box, the war protesting rally, or the “support the troops” march is fruitless.
Let Thy mercy be upon us, O Lord, even as we have set our hope on Thee. Blessed art Thou, O Lord: teach me Thy statutes.
Blessed art Thou, O Master: make me to understand Thy statutes.
Blessed art Thou, O holy One: enlighten me with Thy statutes.
Thy mercy, O Lord, endureth forever, despise not the works of Thy hands.
...offered by Dn. fdj, a sinner at 8:57 AM [+]