Anybody with me on this?
Last Sunday we attempted to discuss the Hellbound? video.
It seems to me a discussion needs a forum in which the participants are in agreement on basic foundational issues regarding the topic. Otherwise it’s a futile exercise. Unless one just enjoys hearing oneself talk.
It seems to me the topic of hell, let alone who goes there and why are parts of a greater whole.
That “whole” needs to be established and agreed upon before attempting to discuss the parts.
Sharing opinions on a topic without an agreed upon context to me is frustrating.
Several things were said Sunday past that from my perspective illustrate this:
- Zack spoke of other options concerning hell.
Based on what? To discuss those options we need to agree on context.
- Jesse “said” in so many words that he and I have shared a common experience in our faith journey and went on to point out questions that have arisen for him (and a friend he regards to be of a higher spiritual caliber) that make him question the “classic” doctrine of hell. Here again context is an issue, I would need to probe into Jesse’s experience to determine if indeed we do share a common experience. Only then after establishing that commonness could it be referenced so as to bring credibility to his questions.
- Jacqui shared how interpretations of scripture different from mine informed her opinions. That’s an admission of approaching the topic from perhaps contrary contexts.
Nancy got the ball rolling when before anything else was said she made a point of “out of respect” so as not to offend, asking for my opinion first and foremost. This was fine and I am not upset or troubled by it but it shows the low potential our gathering had for being anything more than gab fest. In affect her question stated the obvious: What Mary and I believe is incongruous with the majority and so as to keep from offending Scot and Mary lets find out where they stand on this specific topic so we know how to temper our own remarks. Gee, thanks for looking out, but that type of environment is not conducive to “discussion”. If real discussion is curtailed because of our presence are we justified in feeling as though we are a “wet blanket”?
In short substance and depth can only be plumbed from a position of shared or agreed upon context. To attempt to delve into those things with out such agreement seems lame.
I think we had the (hell) cart way before the horse last Sunday. Establishing a common context is HARD work. Are we up for it?
- I see this coming week Jacqui is hosting a video “discussion”/ Communion.
Should we instead do some of the HARD work?
2 weeks out Mary & I host the “discussion” of the Tim Keller book, “The Reason for God”.
Do we want to discuss this book without a shared context? By the way trying to cover this book in a onetime gathering is very optimistic. There is a chapter focused on hell, perhaps we should limit our “discussion” to that alone. If you need the book or that chapter let me know and we can try to figure out how to accommodate you in that way.
love to all