Christian Apologetics Society

Jesus replied, "You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God."
- Matthew 22:29

Isaiah 55:11
So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it
Gen 1:3
Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light
Matthew 26:26
And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, “Take, eat; this is My body."
Malachi 1:11
My name will be great among the nations, from the rising to the setting of the sun. In every place incense and pure offerings will be brought to my name, because my name will be great among the nations," says the LORD Almighty.
John 20:23
If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.
James 5:16
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.
James 2:14
What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?
Luke 20:38
For He is not the God of the dead but of the living, for all live to Him.
Rev 21:27
Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life.
1 Cor 3:15
If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
Psalm 51:5
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin my mother conceived me.
John 3:5
Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
Titus 3:5
Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
1 Timothy 3:15
but if I am delayed, I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
Acts 22:16
And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.

Mother Theresa's Dark Night of the Soul

The last few days I've been catching up on the Christian apologetics blogosphere. One of the most interesting thimgs being commented on is Time magazine's recent article on Mother Theresa and her "crisis of faith". The wave of discussions rippling through the blog continuum ranges from highs of thoughtful discussion to lows of anti-Catholic and atheistic hate.

Among the best discussions were those found at Titus One Nine, an Anglican-Episcopal blog. At T19 the discussion focused on the the wonderful gift that God had bestowed on Mother Theresa. The comments were full of love and intelligence. Little wonder that Kendall Harmon's T19 blog is a daily read for me.

Among the worst discussions were those found at Slice of Laodicea and Godless Kiwi. The Godless Kiwi's comments are understandable and could likely be excused under the concept of invincible ignorance, that is, "ignorance" in the apologetic sense. There is no such defense or excuse for the uncharitable behavior and comments found among the Slice commenters. As Christians they know better.

In contrast to the Anglicans, the Reformed Christians of Slice started with name calling (Caffowick), misrepresentations ("she worshiped the pope"), and general anti-Catholic bigotry ("the woman lived by a pernicious and Satanic doctrine"). To be fair and charitable, there were notable exceptions, including Rick ("I think her uncertainty - and in the face of that still trusting God, still going about her love for others - is part of what made her real.")

One thing I noted among the Slice audience was that no one seemed to recognize in the article John of the Cross' famous work Dark Night of the Soul. This was in complete contrast to the T19 audience were the similarities to John of the Cross were immediately recognized and discussed. Perhaps Anglicans are better read in regards to the early Church.

For those not familiar with John of the Cross' famous Christian classic, the first chapter begins with this memorable paragraph:

    INTO this dark night souls begin to enter when God draws them forth from the state of beginners—which is the state of those that meditate on the spiritual road—and begins to set them in the state of progressives—which is that of those who are already contemplatives—to the end that, after passing through it, they may arrive at the state of the perfect, which is that of the Divine union of the soul with God. Wherefore, to the end that we may the better understand and explain what night is this through which the soul passes, and for what cause God sets it therein, it will be well here to touch first of all upon certain characteristics of beginners (which, although we treat them with all possible brevity, will not fail to be of service likewise to the beginners themselves), in order that, realizing the weakness of the state wherein they are, they may take courage, and may desire that God will bring them into this night, wherein the soul is strengthened and confirmed in the virtues, and made ready for the inestimable delights of the love of God.

I encourage those who have not read John of the Cross, to read through Dark Night of the Soul or Ascent of Mount Carmel and then revisit the Time article. You'll be surprised at what you see and read with the perpective of Church history.

Source: Mother Teresa's Crisis of Faith

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Blogger Dharmashaiva said...

Perhaps Anglicans are better read in regards to the early Church.

That would be a charitable interpretation.

7:46 PM  

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