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Acts of the Apostles 17:15, 22 - 18:1

Paul’s escort took him as far as Athens, and went back with instructions for Silas and Timothy to rejoin Paul as soon as they could.

Paul stood before the whole Council of the Areopagus and made this speech:

“Men of Athens, I have seen for myself how extremely scrupulous you are in all religious matters, because I noticed, as I strolled round admiring your sacred monuments, that you had an altar inscribed: To An Unknown God. Well, the God whom I proclaim is in fact the one whom you already worship without knowing it.

“Since the God who made the world and everything in it is himself Lord of heaven and earth, he does not make his home in shrines made by human hands. Nor is he dependent on anything that human hands can do for him, since he can never be in need of anything; on the contrary, it is he who gives everything - including life and breath - to everyone. From one single stock he not only created the whole human race so that they could occupy the entire earth, but he decreed how long each nation should flourish and what the boundaries of its territory should be. And he did this so that all nations might seek the deity and, by feeling their way towards him, succeed in finding him. Yet in fact he is not far from any of us, since it is in him that we live, and move, and exist, as indeed some of your own writers have said:

‘We are all his children.’

“Since we are the children of God, we have no excuse for thinking that the deity looks like anything in gold, silver or stone that has been carved and designed by a man.

“God overlooked that sort of thing when men were ignorant, but now he is telling everyone everywhere that they must repent, because he has fixed a day when the whole world will be judged, and judged in righteousness, and he has appointed a man to be the judge. And God has publicly proved this by raising this man from the dead.”

At this mention of rising from the dead, some of them burst out laughing; others said, “We would like to hear you talk about this again.” After that Paul left them, but there were some who attached themselves to him and became believers, among them Dionysius the Areopagite and a woman called Damaris, and others besides. After this Paul left Athens and went to Corinth.

John 16:12-15

Jesus said to his disciples:

“I still have many things to say to you
but they would be too much for you now.
But when the Spirit of truth comes
he will lead you to the complete truth,
since he will not be speaking as from himself
but will say only what he has learnt;
and he will tell you of the things to come.
He will glorify me,
since all he tells you
will be taken from what is mine.
Everything the Father has is mine;
that is why I said:
All he tells you
will be taken from what is mine.”


One of the mailing lists that I’m on recently brought this tidbit to my attention. The topic is Darwinism, and it says:

If you’re going to be a serious Darwinist, then you’ll simply have to get used to living with bad logic and stark contradiction, to wit:

- The universe is a great cosmic accident, but life itself has meaning and purpose.

- Intelligent Design is creationist pseudoscience, but the just-so stories of Darwinism are real science.

- Our genes are selfish, even when they create selflessness.

- An ordered universe can come about entirely on its own, though the principle underlying it is entropy.

- Blind undirected forces can accidentally mimic purposeful intelligence.

- Intelligent Design isn’t scientific because it’s not falsifiable, and oh by the way, it is routinely falsified.

- The difference between science and religion is that science focuses on fact and religion focuses on faith, though all those gaps in the fossil record need not trouble us because surely there are transitional fossils out there that simply haven’t been found yet.

The reason for putting this here in today’s reflection is because Darwinists are people who faithfully believe in their brand of science and searching for answers to life’s mysteries, but at the same time, they close off the possibility of the existence of God.

I like how St. Paul talks about “feeling” our way towards God. All of us are “feeling” our way towards God. None of us can box God up into our descriptions of God. If we can, then that is not God.

In a proper and honest search for answers to our questions, we cannot close off possibilities without having explored them properly. At the same time, it is not to say that we should spend our lives searching for concrete answers. There is something called faith, which even the Darwinists believe in. We use our talents and gifts to search for answers as best as we can, but there will come a point in time that we will have to make that leap into the unknown and just trust that what we believe in is real.

Dear Lord, we pray for the gift of faith to make that leap into the unknown and place our lives into your hands. Help us to trust you, the Unknown God who cannot be described, but needs to be experienced. Amen.

Give Thanks to the Lord for: The opportunities to experience God.

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