When we try to make religion about faith rather than knowledge, we force potential believers to abandon their reason or our religious system. Poor, empty souls become like an asymptotic line, where the x-axis forever approaches the y-axis (think of curling loops) but never actually intersects the y-axis at any point. The would-be believer experiences alternating feelings (but only feelings) of affection, honest questioning and real desire but finally recoils, sighing melancholy, in distrust of the non-verifiable.
If any meaningful portion of our culture will remain Christian (and, please, remember the Biblical power of the Remnant and the lengths to which God will go for the very, very few) it is necessary that we learn to answer certain questions actual persons ask. Alas, we will have to search for potential believers and then in-bed some small hint of seriousness in them. This is difficult to do in a society awash in vulgar superficiality.
Jesus spoke for hours with only occasional interruptions for music. He spent a great deal of time in fellowship, story telling to reconstruct His teachings. He approached His subjects meaningfully and His objects seriously. The presentation of transformative spiritual knowledge should not fall to the level of a summer replacement television sit-com. Modern Western worship experiences consistently fall below this level, bereft of ritual, absent traditional mores and devoid of anything higher than reconstructed pablum; easy to produce, soft to chew and rapidly flushed through the system.
If any small portion of our culture is to remain authentically Christian, we will have to repeatedly answer well at least two questions. One is the question we look at in this series at aintsobad, the ever present question, "Can we know God?" The second is implied in the first, "Who are you (who is anyone?) to say what God is like, or who God is?"
The atheists, the anti-theists, the agnostics, the unconcerned, ask these questions more often than believers. Believers tend to accept the presence of God (or the need for some value-added ethos) and act from there, often without any intrusion from reason. If the audience expects inanity, it should not recoil when the teacher shows himself a clown.
There are ways to offer remarkable insights even to the blind.
Opinions expressed here are mine alone.