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Posted by on Jul 11, 2016 | 2 comments

The Nicene Creed: “…who spoke by the prophets.”

The Nicene Creed: “…who spoke by the prophets.”

**This post is part of a series reflecting on the Nicene Creed** << Previous post View series Next post >>   “…who spoke by the prophets.”   Semi-Arian, Pneumatomachian, Spirit fighters. These titles designate a heretical sect that emerged in the fourth-century whose followers denied the divinity of the Spirit. As Alex outlined in his introductory post, the Nicene Creed underwent a two-part development, the first in 325 and the second in 381. One of the important developments of the Creed in 381 regards the proclamation about the Holy Spirit: 325: And in the Holy Ghost. 381: And in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life; who proceeds from the Father [and the Son]; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; who spoke by the prophets. As can be seen, the 381 additions emphasizes the full divinity of the Holy Spirit as the third-person of the Trinity. But why the addition of “who spoke by the prophets?” In 379, Gregory of Nazianzus was...

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Posted by on Oct 30, 2014 | 1 comment

The Difficulty of Reading

The Difficulty of Reading

Amidst switching between three different reading communities (undergraduate and two different graduate school settings), I have been faced with a certain kind of difficulty of reading texts. Likely, what I want to articulate in this post is self-evident to many, but for me it is only in this third reading community that the true issue-at-hand has presented itself. The difficulty of reading is that reading is always done within communities. Like our title Many Horizons, there are many horizons for reading texts and these readings are dictated both by the communities in which we have read and presently read. Within these communities there are subdivisions where different ways of reading—i.e. lenses for reading, a hermeneutic—are present. These lenses are defined by overarching theological and philosophical frameworks, be they overtly or subversively presented. So, for instance, reading texts in my undergraduate setting was done through the overarching framework that the way God speaks is through his Word and the way for that Word to speak presently to us today is...

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Posted by on Jun 25, 2013 | 2 comments

You’re wrong! Do you know why?

You’re wrong! Do you know why?

I am the kind of person who tends to think I’m right about everything. I have great confidence in my own correctness, remarkably unfettered by past experience. I may have been wrong before, but NOW at last I’ve figured it all out! Of course, on some level we all tend to think our opinions are the correct ones, otherwise we wouldn’t have them. But – as Kathryn Schultz notes in her insightful TED talk, ‘On Being Wrong’ – this belief that we’re right leaves us with an intellectual problem: how do we explain all of the people who disagree with us? Schultz goes on to define three assumptions we usually make when someone disagrees with our beliefs. 1. They’re ignorant: “They don’t have access to the same information we do,” Schultz says, “and when we generously share that information with them, they’ll see the light and join our team.” However, when that doesn’t work, says Schultz, “when it turns out they have all the same facts we do and...

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Posted by on Jun 13, 2013 | 4 comments

Rats, Words, and the Human World

Rats, Words, and the Human World

In 2010 Radiolab ran a story on words, the first act of which was titled “Words that Change the World” (if you don’t know what Radiolab is, you should check it out—it’s awesome). During the story they related an experiment (of course involving rats) that revealed some interesting things about the role language plays in our lives. In the experiment, a rat was placed in a rectangular white box, and food was hidden in one corner. The rat was shown the food, then spun about so it no longer knew where the food was. It was then supposed to go to the corner in which the food had been placed. However, given that the walls were all white, the rat had no way to orient itself and it only headed to the correct side of the room about fifty percent of the time. The experimenters then painted one wall blue, and you’d expect that this would have solved the rat’s orientation problem. It didn’t. Rats can do color, and...

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Posted by on Jun 7, 2013 | 8 comments

Many Horizons

Many Horizons

I grew up just outside of Minneapolis, Minnesota in its northwest suburbs. Throughout my childhood, I would excitedly climb into the car ready for a trip to “the city.” I can still close my eyes and see the twist of the highway that would reveal the sparkling cityscape of Minneapolis slowly climbing higher into the sky as I approached. When I grow a bit homesick, this is the Minneapolis I long for. But, this is not the only “Minneapolis.” If you come in from the east, the city that appears is much different than the Minneapolis of my childhood; from that angle there is the mighty Mississippi and fluffy-white of the Metrodome at the forefront of the city, both of which are hidden coming in from the west—but, it is the same city. And, of course, there is a real Minneapolis, which, if someone claimed contained a mountain range in the distance or rivaled the size of Chicago, the city would be able to “bite back” and insist that...

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