Thursday, November 3, 2011

On James Pyles blog "Morning meditations"-
the other day, the discussion turned to mysticism. James wrote this:
"Actually, that’s a good question. We’re not prophets certainly but do “ordinary” human beings have the ability to have an “information exchange” with God? I don’t mean a conversation the way we see Abraham or Moses talking with God, but can we make “contact”? Are our prayers in vain or does God hear us? Are our requests to hear from Him in vain or does God, in some manner or fashion, “speak” to us? Can we hear Him?" He asked me to write a blog telling my thought on this subject. So here it is, I rely here on Tim Hegg's teachings.

It is a given that there is a mystical aspect to our faith. A spiritual (something that is not physical) reality. It is something We cannot physically observe, investigate, experience or experiment with. James asked: ..." Are our requests to hear from Him in vain or does God, in some manner or fashion, “speak” to us? Can we hear Him?" Yes He spoke to us in His Word.

When we pray and wait for an answer how are we as humans sure that what we "got" is what God really meant for us to "Get?" Is the divine meaning go beyond what we can understand? Are we to look for a "deeper, hidden meaning" that go over our head with its literal understanding? Christianity made an art of this. For the Christian Church the "fuller sense" is far and better than the "literal sense." But what is the criteria that determines what is and is not a "deeper sense?"

Paul writes, that " The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God" (Rom. 8:16. He describes here the mystical nature of the relationship between the Spirit of God and the spirit of the believer. We cannot base our understanding of this relationship on our experience or any esoteric writing, we can only base it on the Word of God. We have to judge our experience by what the word says, not visa versa, because we believe that the Spirit will lead us according to the very Scriptures He inspired. The Kabbalists say no. They say that one comes to know God best through the mystery of ecstatic, mystical episodes with the divine, therefore, one can find the meaning of the Biblical text through their experience. This is rampart withing Christianity and Judaism alike, "theosophy" in Christianity and "Pardes" in rabbinical writings.

To sum up,I believe, when one "get" an answer to his/her prayers, one has to evaluate the answer against the Scriptures, not against one's life experience.