Divine Showoff

For my theology class I have to read God's Greater Glory by Bruce Ware. I have not been looking forward to it and I've been putting off reading it for as long as possible. But now the time has come, so I've been reading it today, and among many things that annoy/bother/confuse/baffle/irritate me, ultimately, I have come out of reading so far gaining a little bit of insight. The thing that I always kind of said before, but became abundantly clear to me is a fundamental difference between Calvinism and Free Will Theism.

Ware says that the ONLY end of humanity is the glory of God. That sounds neat, but we are the consequences. God creates us, causes us to fall (thereby becoming the author of evil), causes us to suffer an incredible amount (continuing His evil streak), causes some of us to go into eternal suffering, sends His Son as a display of power and provision, so that the vast minority He has elected can praise Him ever greater because they see the majority of people going to Hell. All of this so that God can have attention.

Is this "only Glory" model what we see in the Bible? Absolutely not. Love is the overarching theme of the Bible. A major result of this is glory, buut it doesn't seem to be God's motivation for this whole deal we call existence. God created us as an act of love, not for attention. We fell on our own...not by God's hand so that later He could show off what He was willing to do for us, so that we would give Him more glory.

Ultimately, I don't want to be too harsh, because what if I'm wrong. But I think this stems from the false idea of total depravity. There is absolutely nothing good or decent about people. This is simply not true. There is something of value in people. It's called Imago Dei, and its still around. We are still the image-bearers, even though we screwed up. God does want a relationship with us. It is what He created us for. This does not rule out glory. This love leads to tons of Glory for God (I believe moreso than a Calvinist approach), but the glory is not His purpose for creating. That simply results in an egocentric Deity.

1 comment:

Jagey said...

You just put my main apprehensions regarding Calvinism into words for me. Thank you, Sagacious Lee.