Saturday, April 25, 2009

Community without Community

I have been thinking about the role of Christian community, perhaps a.k.a."The Church", compared to our individuality--especially in what passes for truth and sound doctrine.  

I very frustrated with the Evangelicals being locked-up over the stories in Genesis chapter 1 through 11.   These stories, useful for thousands of years as powerful lessons have now become a powerful destroyer of community and I believe a hindrance to the Spirit of God.   Validated by no less than Jesus himself (Matt 24) the creation stories collide with scientific discovery--creating an unacceptable tension.   The Evangelicals call upon us to reject the truth of what nature presents in favor of a hermeneutic.   A hermeneutic that allows violation of at least one of the Ten Commandments (keeping the Sabbath), but does not allow other statements to be interpreted in a historical way.   

I was nudged last night to find my copy of "Deconstruction in a nutshell" --edited / commentary by Caputo.    I did find it (I've been looking for it for weeks), and read the chapter on "community without community". 

 The possibility of community is sustained by its impossibility.  Our uniqueness, the radical contingency of our being, and the impossibility of agreeing on everything makes community impossible. Christians are called to community, and are pushed beyond themselves--to give and to minister traditionally, but perhaps we are also called  to accept new versions of truth (heresy!).  

 The lack of openness in the Christian community towards science plants potential seeds of its destruction.   Its insistence on agency in the creation of life throws it against the theory of evolution--and I fear the community will break. 

 Adding scientific facts into the conversation has no impact on the true believers--the wagons are circled, the hermeneutic of inerrancy is the redoubt (curious word).   Those that don't know science are enthralled by the few scientists that support their world.