Spiritual inversion – God in our midst

By Dave Henning / September 21, 2020

“The result of this spiritual inversion is a god who is about our size and looks an awful lot like us.  And most of our spiritual shortcomings stem from this fundamental mistake: thinking about God in human terms.”- Mark Batterson

In Chapter 4 (“Eight-Foot Ceilings” Coming Out of the Cage of Assumptions”) of Wild Goose Chase, Mark Batterson notes what many of us do when something fails to fit within our preexisting cognitive categories.  What we can’t explain, we explain away.

As a result, instead of embracing a mystery like Jesus walking on water, we concoct a human explanation.  Rather than reveling in the wonder, we try to fit God within our logical, left-brain limits.  Hence, God not only disrupts our routines, but He also challenges our assumptions.  Because our assumptions remove all the mystery and majesty out of life.

Furthermore, Pastor Batterson quips, ever since God first created Adam in His image, we’ve adopted a spiritual inversion.  We make God in our image.  Writing in The Knowledge of the Holy, A. W. Tozer explains the implications:

“The God of Abraham has withdrawn His conscious Presence from us, and another God whom our fathers knew not is making himself at home among us.  This God we have made and because we have made him we can understand him; because we have created him he can never surprise us, never overwhelm us, nor transcend us.”

Therefore, even though Thomas Jefferson loved the teachings of Jesus, his Enlightenment mind held no category for miracles.  Thus, Jefferson actually took a pair of scissors and cut out all the miracles from the King James Bible.

Certainly, most of us can’t fathom doing what Jefferson did.  However, Mark cautions, even if we never physically cut out verses in the Bible, we:

  • ignore verses we cannot comprehend
  • avoid verses that turn us off
  • rationalize verses we deem too radical

Finally, we end up in the cage of our own assumptions.  And the more we assume, the more our cage shrinks.

Today’s question: How do you challenge the assumptions you make that limit God?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Instantaneous nonlocality: distant spooky action”

About the author

Dave Henning

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