This is going to be my second last post on Internet Monk. My final contribution will come Monday when I will be returning to my first ever post: The Coming Evangelical Collapse – A Statistical Analysis. Today I wanted to close up some loose ends and do a mind dump of a stream of thoughts that are circling in my head. Feel free to respond to whatever grabs your attention.
I am a person of faith. There have been several events throughout my life which up to this moment I have no rational explanation explanation other than that God was involved.
I don’t put a lot of truck into apologetics. I feel that they largely exist to convince the already convinced.
I think the moral argument – that there must be some sort of absolute standard of right and wrong – is the most convincing to me. What made what Hitler did wrong? If there is no absolute standard of right and wrong then who are we say? I understand that absolute standard to be God revealed in Jesus as the logos of John 1.
I also have a lot of doubt (which I generally keep quiet about). My greatest doubt? Our ancestors lived with a geocentric view of astronomy which ultimately got proven wrong. We live with a geocentric religion. Earth is but a speck of dust in this great cosmos. Paul tells us that the heavens reveal the handiwork of God. To me, the heavens reveal our own insignificance.
On balance though, my faith has sustained me through my doubt.
What is sin? I think the most important thing is to love God and love others – understanding that love for neighbor extends to those we have conflict with as well. I find it very difficult to construe fidelity in relationships, whether married or not, gay or straight, to be construed as sin. It strikes me as particularly relevant for today that Ezekiel says that the sin of Sodom was gluttony – our consumptions is destroying God’s creation and is showing neither love for God, nor love for others.
What is Hell? The view of Hell as a place of eternal torment seems to be more informed by the Dante’s Inferno of the 14th Century, rather than actual biblical support. I feel an equally strong biblical case can be made for the idea that Hell is a place where people cease to be. In which case, the Atheist’s view of his final end (hello Klasie) is not that different from my view of his final end! Then again, if the Atheist is right, that won’t be any different from my final end either! And in my life time I won’t be able to prove either of us right or wrong.
Fun side note (this is after all a random stream of consciousness edition): You know the bright light that people get in those near death experiences? I get a very bright light when my eyes are closed and my blood sugar drops dangerously low. It happens more often than it should. Fortunately I always wake up.
Sweden: Did you hear that the King of Sweden apologized today for failing the Swedish people. No they did not achieve herd immunity, their numbers are sky rocketing again. If I hear one more Swedish myth I am going to scream. Side note 2: Sweden report deaths based on the date they occurred. All other countries report them based on the reported date. That is why Sweden’s death graph on Worldometers always trends down for the last 10 days (as they report the deaths that actually occurred on the previous date.
In what I consider to be the biggest blunder of the Toronto Raptors’ history – though the 8th overall pick of Rafael Araujo in 2004 comes close – the Raptors announced this week that they were selling 3800 tickets per game for each of their games (in their home away from home of Tampa) this year. We need bold actions to bring down the rate of transmission, not moves in the other direction.
Good new on the vaccine front, and I wanted to add some that has largely not been reported. We have heard that about 70% of people need to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity. That will take some time to roll out. Estimates in Canada are some time in the fall. The better news is currently the highest Rt rate in the U.S.A. is in Arizona at 1.21. We just have to bring that down by 30% for transmission to start to peter out. Guess what as long as people continue to wear masks and social distance, an Rt rate of .9 can be achieved with a vaccine rate of just 32%. Of course people will start slacking off on the mask wearing and social distancing, so the math won’t be that simple, but I fully expect that we will have beaten the virus into the ground by about May or June.
Where do I go from here?
Should I restart my own blog or join in with someone else? I have been thinking a lot about this for the last few months. I have decided to…
Do nothing. I need to lie low for a while and recharge my batteries mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
My house hasn’t been painted (interior) since we bought it 25 years ago. That is going to receive some attention. I am going to spend some time working on my garden.
And I still hope for some epic canoeing and camping adventures, along with a little more white water swimming (yup that’s me in the picture – taken not that long ago).
When I do get back to writing it will be working on Michael Spencer’s book. I really don’t want the pressure of a due date, so contrary to what I previously announced, I am going to get quite a bit further on before contacting a publisher. For those of you who have expressed interest, I will keep in touch and provide updates.
For anyone else who wants to keep in touch, email me at MichaelSpencersNewBook@gmail.com. I won’t publish my private email here, but I will give you a shout back.
Finally, I want to thank everyone at Internet Monk: Michael and Denise Spencer, Jeff Dunn, Chaplain Mike, Daniel Jepsen, Mike the Geologist, Damaris Zehner, the occasional writers both past and present, along with all the commenters. Your participation in my life over the past 12 years or so has saved my spiritual life. We have journeyed through this wilderness journey together, and without you as my constant companions I really don’t know where I would be.
Thank you for all your friendship and support over the years.
And as always, your thoughts and comments are welcome.