Thursday, April 24, 2008

God's Grammar Rules

Have you ever heard of God's Grammar Rules? I read about them in Joanne Weaver's Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World. (Don't judge me. I'm learning about spirituality in all forms: hokey and academic.) She says there are two:
  1. Don't put a period where God has placed a comma.
  2. Don't put a comma where God has placed a period.
Now the first one I've seen before on a United Church of Christ banner. It's commonly used as an argument for continuing revelation--most famously for acceptance of homosexuality. At it's worst it's used to erode biblical inerrancy. But Weaver's point wasn't nearly as heretical--just that God may have a plan to persevere through hardship as seen in raising Lazarus from the dead.

The second point I had never heard before, but that doesn't mean it's not out there. Basically it was the don't be a stumbling block lecture that I'm being to think is all Christian books of this ilk.

My big problem is that there's no indication of when to apply which grammar rule. You know you have "I before e except after c...", but that's not how this works. A period and a comma are both pauses, but how do you learn which stop it is? Prayer? Maybe if you believe in continuing revelation and the pipeline theology that God telepathically inputs the right answer into your brain. I'm an advocate of: Sure pray about it. It might help you get over yourself, but don't expect a clear sign post. Just use your God-given brain and go forth. "Sin boldly but believe more boldly still," as Martin Luther said. So that's my two cents.

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