fredag 13. januar 2017

On the arena of faith

Yesterday, I wrote that the order of the arenas on which we are challenged to set an example hardly can be random. At least it seems obvious with the first three, but shouldn’t the arena of faith be the first instead of the fourth?
“…set an example … in faith…”
1 Tim 4:12
If it is about receiving the gospel, I believe it would be correct to place the faith earlier, but this is about setting an example. Therefore, I dare claim that the placing gives meaning. I am convinced that Paul writes about the mature faith. A fresh faith may easily become haughty, and I speak from experience. When I as a young teenager experienced that faith was life and not just a set of dogmas and rules, I was convinced that I had seen not just “the light”, but all of it. The faith I conveyed did not necessarily have its base on the arena of love.

When Jesus came he was “full of grace and truth” (1). In many ways grace represents love, and faith truth. If grace does not precede truth, the encounter with truth can be brutal. If love does not precede faith, even faith can be brutal because the faith may be conceived as demanding.

“There is a difference between demands and demands, and must and must” Tomas Sjødin writes, and continues: “I call the necessary demands for ‘love's demands’, and I do this because of observation made of what happens when we draw closer to love. In a subtle way the demands are transformed to longing or desire. In relation to the one I love, there are many things I must, but the demands are far from dull duties. ‘I just must hear your voice!’ ‘I must see you.’” (2)

That is how it is supposed to be with faith. I act in obedience because of love to him who loved me first.

‘Manna’ for today:

Love is the main entrance to the arena of love
(1) John 1:14
(2) In the book: «Det er mye man ikke må», Vårt Land forlag, 2015 p 11

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