Thursday, March 4, 2010

Still More on Rational Thinking v. Rationalism

Today I came upon an on-line sermon (not an Orthodox one) on Mark 9:17-12, the story of the man who asked Jesus to cast the demon out of his son, the same father who cried, "Lord, I believe, help Thou my unbelief!"

The sermon was used to deduce (the preacher's word) some things about devils, mostly rather unhelpful things, such as that they are "rather personal" and that they come in various shapes and degrees of strength and ferocity.

The way a Christian is supposed to know about demons is not by deducing anything, even from Holy Scriptures, but from having fought devils every day. Then when he reads or hears about them in Scripture, he sort of nods his head in regretful recognition: Yes, that's how it is. Lord, have mercy!

Another example I can think of to show how rationalism creeps in is The Catechism of the Catholic Church, a copy of which I picked up in the bookstore when it was first published. I remember how shocked I was to see the Catholic faith captured, all laid out, pinned down, and dissected in chapters, sections, subsections, and numbered paragraphs. I literally gasped.

Any Christianity you can do that to is all but unrecognizable to the Orthodox.


h west said...

Wow. Thanks for this and the previous post. I needed to read that.

Anonymous said...