Ineffable, Inexplicable, Incomprehensible

Ineffable does not mean inexplicable.

Have you ever seen a cloud chamber? You create a sealed environment using a hardened glass cylinder and load the air inside with water or alcohol vapor to the point of super-saturation. It gets cloudy inside as the vapor is near the point of precipitation. Then, any source of energized particles near that chamber will cause visible tracks through the mist. However, random particles from nowhere will also zip through, often at very high velocity. It’s a great way of making folks aware that we are living in a world under constant bombardment of various energy particles that ionize and change our body chemistry. Thus, aging itself is partly a matter of long-term exposure to such ionizing particles. You would notice that on cloudy days there are fewer random particles, so it stands to reason folks who live in regions of the world that tend to be cloudy long and often would also tend to live longer with less aging effects.

That is, if you control for other factors in aging. We know that environmental pollutants can accelerate aging and cause a multitude of maladies arising from biochemical disturbances in your body. Particle physics is one thing, complicated enough when you recognize that something like quantum gravitational fluctuations can affect the results. Then there’s chemistry where isolating the elements and compounds under study can be hindered by any number of micro-contaminants. Washing your containers with the wrong stuff will destroy some tests. When you move to organic chemistry or biochemistry, where things are examined more or less in their natural state, the principle of isolating the inputs to an experiment is relative, at best. There are no instruments and testing procedures that can measure conclusively what mixture of pollutants cause what range of symptoms in the human body. Instead, we learn about influences and averages, etc. Medicine is mostly estimation based on amassing data that itself might be of questionable quality.

But the Western scientific community persists in assuming that they will one day probably get a handle on all the details. Think of Star Trek and the “tricorder” device that so precisely calculates all the variables down to the level of subatomic particles.

But nothing in our Western scientific approach allows for the biggest variable of all. Our Creator says unequivocally that He is in charge, and we will only discover what He wants us to know. Further, He said most firmly that He can remake things on-the-fly. But even more importantly, God has stated that there is a standing moral element in all such calculations. Human intelligence is unable to evaluate the full range of moral factors involved, and those moral factors have a greater effect than the sum total of mere mechanical factors that we can measure. That’s what the revelation of God says. If you leave out any consideration of moral factors, you will always have a serious failure rate when it comes to using whatever you imagine you learned through science.

Yes, I really see it that way. I’ve experienced it directly.

I can tell you about it, but unless you are open to such a different viewpoint of reality, it will be silly gibberish. However, such is the viewpoint of that vast majority of humanity over human history, and our brief flash of Western Civilization is the anomaly. You’d be shocked at the amount of information we Westerners have amassed on this subject, mostly because it’s contrary to the fundamental Western intellectual bias. It’s a major element in Western bias to deny that there is a bias, to assert that the Western bias is the human default.

When we preach the gospel message of Jesus Christ, and we ignore the Western bias, then we are preaching a gospel of demons. That’s because the gospel became perverted and polluted by Western assumptions about reality. The assumptions Jesus held in His human mind aren’t that hard to estimate, given what we already know about the times, people and their literature.

Do you understand what the Bible means by “perfection”? It’s not that God has some iron predetermined path based on immutable laws of quantum physics. He watches your heart as you move through your day, and interacts with you on a personal basis. That He does so outside of the intellectual capacity is what makes it difficult for us, because we kept expecting to “know” things about His will in the sense of factual details. That’s all wrong, horribly mistaken. His will is more flexible than that of any person you know. That doesn’t mean God is unpredictable; it means He is alive. He’s a Person, not some static body of objective truth with a human mask.

He reads your heart more than your mind. If your heart is constrained by Western biases, then it’s a pretty simple job to read it. If you embrace the ancient philosophical understanding of the sensory heart, then His response to you becomes far more complex.

While our minds notice a lag in God’s response most of the time, the heart does not measure in terms of time passing, but of currents and whether things are ripe. When something is complete in your soul, the door is closed and your heart turns to something else. If you aren’t used to such an approach, your mind will have no clue and His will — His interaction with you — is incomprehensible. If your mind makes room for moral factors, and you strive to understand revelation from that ancient Hebrew perspective, then you are far less troubled by changes in the flow of His will. The image of God’s will as some precise track visible only when you catch glimpses in a cloud chamber is all wrong, a perversion of the gospel message.

God is the One Person in your life who really knows you best. His will was never that precise in the first place. He is best understood as an Ancient Near Eastern feudal sheikh. You never know what He’s got in mind, but you know what He has said He wants from you. He operates according to His statements, not as propositions, but as personal notes on things you should be able to grasp in your heart, though less so in your mind. He’s ready for your variations, though clearly not as most of us tend to expect. Our social and cultural conditioning have really screwed us up when it comes to matters of faith. But God knows your heart even when you don’t, and that’s what He responds to.

Incomprehension is a state of mind, where the mind is determined to rule, instead of serve as God intended.

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About Ed Hurst

Disabled Veteran, prophet of God's Laws, Bible History teacher, wannabe writer, volunteer computer technician, cyclist, Social Science researcher
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