We’ve laid a lot of background leading to this concluding post. We’ve seen how the internet is changing knowledge, which in turn, is changing religion.
It is a truism that winners write history. Christian history is no exception. Ours is a history written by those who won our debates through the years. Today, most of us don’t know about the ancient struggles; only the authorized answers the victors wrote.
We don’t talk much about the messy process that went into our spiritual Story. We don’t talk much about the doubt and struggle we went through. No. We just report the authorized outcome; the final product.
religion knowledge webThat is a real shame, because our society is struggling right now to remake spiritual meaning. Our physicists and philosophers have upended our view of reality, and our spiritual narrative is struggling to catch up.
We Christians have a gift to offer this process. We have our rich heritage of framing the right questions for spiritual meaning-making. Authorized Christian answers don’t resonate with many in our newly emerging universe, but the questions we’ve grappled with over the centuries could really help. They are a rich gift we have to offer.
heretic religionOur arguments through the years have been ferocious. Consequently, when the victors wrote the history afterward, they often demonized the vanquished, calling them “heretics” or “pagans.” This leaves very little wiggle room for Christians to wonder out loud what the losers were talking about. In the aftermath, we’ve assigned the victorious perspective “one-and-true-truth” status. This tends to mire us in the old, Britannica, way of relating to knowledge.
The gift our religion could give is to open up the Wikipedia-like “talk” page on our ancient struggles; reveal how things got the way they are; how they might have gone differently.
We’ve fought fiercely about even the most basic elements of our Story. We haven’t even agreed on the God we worship. Through the years, God has changed again and again. He was human-like; standing outside Abraham’s tent and bartered for the city of Sodom. Then he was super-charged, causing Moses’ face to shine until he had to put a bag on his head. Later still, we insisted that even seeing God would kill you (Ex. 33).
That one argument alone could help frame today’s spiritual struggle. It speaks to the human hunger for Ultimacy. Is Ultimacy (God) accessible (human-like, touchable)? Inaccessible (transcendent, overwhelming, beyond us)?
If you ask the right questions, you’re miles ahead on the journey. And we Christians have questions!  They are actually a better gift for our society than the answers we’ve come up with through the years. (As are our struggles with human nature, sacred texts, sin, redemption, and so forth.)
What a gift if we’d open the “wiki-talk page” behind our debates for people trying to hammer out a new narrative of spiritual meaning.
…if we could step away from the pre-internet way of thinking about knowledge.
…if we could step into the post-internet way.

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