Bindings: Reflections on faith, life, and good books
3/20/13 at 02:25 AM 0 Comments

Different Rules For Outside the Box

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A religious group once intended to trap their nemesis, the Jewish teacher Jesus. This particular group disagreed with another religious group over resurrection of the human body, taking the stance that resurrection couldn’t happen because it violated what we “know.”

They purported to prove that Jesus’ belief in resurrection was untenable according to the laws of this world. If a woman is married, then is widowed, then remarries six more times, with no children, whose wife is she in the resurrection? That question, they thought, should settle the idea of any resurrection.

Jesus replied that the inhabitants of heaven don’t marry. Marriage, so important in this life, isn’t a part of the heavenly kingdom. His questioners judged the future by past rules, but they left out the possibility that the future may operate by different rules. They left out the power of God to set up different rules for another time and place.

As science has increased our knowledge of this physical universe, we know things our ancestors didn’t: that the earth is round, not flat; that tomatoes are not poisonous; that bleeding the body during illness does not cure, but causes harm; and so on.

Yet, with all our knowledge, we fail continually to love our neighbors as ourselves. Knowledge is important, but it doesn’t touch our souls. Soul needs operate on a different level.

We live in the present universe. We suppose that is all there is. From our little box, we presume things about what is outside the box. We judge the outside of the box by what we know of the inside of the box.

We are giants in the physical realm but pygmies in the spiritual.

Ann Gaylia O'Barr, author of Singing in Babylon, Searching for Home, Quiet Deception, Distant Thunder and A Sense of Mission (all OakTara), was a Foreign Service Officer in the United States Department of State from 1990 to 2004. Assignments included tours in U.S. embassies and consulates in Saudi Arabia (Jeddah and Dhahran), Algeria, Canada, Tunisia, and Washington, D.C. (Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration and Bureau of Intelligence and Research).

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