Monday, August 3, 2015
We face the idea of heresy in today's reading. Paul tells his readers in verse 17 to "watch out for people who cause divisions and upset people's faith by teaching things contrary to what you have been taught."
This brings up an important question. Do you believe 100% accurately? Are your thoughts about God, Jesus, the church, heaven, angels, etc... are they totally error free? If you have much sense, you realize the answer is no. No one on earth, not the Pope, not the most advanced Biblical scholar... no one understands all of it perfectly. We are all amiss here and there.
So are we all heretics? Well, yes and no, as my good friend Amy likes to say. We ARE heretical in our beliefs about a few things. But it's not heresy that gets us in trouble. It's pride.
See, many people like to trot out the example of Galileo to show that the Catholic church is backward in its thinking and rejects science. Because Galileo taught that the earth orbits the sun, and not the other way around, people think that the church punished him for it. But this isn't true. Read this great article for more on that.
But the short of it is that Galileo wasn't in trouble with the church because he believed something that wasn't true (what he believed actually WAS true, as we now know... and many others during his time believed it, too). He was in trouble because of his pride. Lots of people during his time thought what he did. But he refused to listen to authority, refused to humble himself, and therefore got himself in trouble.
Same for all of us. We all believe things that are untrue. We all have a view of God and the world that is JUST a little skewed. And that's OK. As long as we remain humble, and listen when we are corrected. We only get in trouble when pride rears its ugly head and we find ourselves saying things like "who are THEY to tell ME about this..."
As long as we're humble heretics, we're in good shape.
Thank You, God, for Your patience with us humble heretics.