Quest for Truth 121 Fundamentally Discerning Truth

It’s another show that almost wasn’t. We knew going into it that Nathan would be missing, so it was up to the remaining hosts to pick up the slack. A discussion was started, in hopes that our prodigal host might at least phone in for a couple minutes. Nothing.

Since we were already under full steam into the topics for the day, we decided to hit the record button, and jump right in. There was just one little problem. The record button never got hit. After an hour or so of the most amazing podcast ever… the kind of thing to knock your socks off, and skyrocket us into the attention of national notoriety and fame as prize winning podcasters… well, OK… maybe not that great, but nobody will ever know for sure except for those in the room.

Instead, what the listener is stuck with today is Keith re-creating the general flow of conversation. To break things up are a few tracks from an episode of the Old Fashioned Revival Hour from April 6, 1952. Stand by though… there is something of a surprise when a phone call actually gets through.

The topics covered include:

A response to a bunny trail comment made in the last episode where we mentioned Adam West, and how he was still out there, actively doing voiceover work. Then he died within the week. We weigh in on the loss, and want to assure listeners that it was in no way our fault. We promise that if we ever mention your name in the podcast, you won’t die before the week is up… We think… Or, at least we hope you don’t… Hey! Is anybody up for some experimentation to prove that theory?

Another topic involved a definition of what a fundamentalist is. As heard from another podcast, the lengthy definition was that, words to this affect, that it is a belief of black and white principles that are used to suppress, or brush under the rug, the complex issues of life. Opening the door to repressed emotions, or bad characteristics to come boiling out in a dangerous way. This doesn’t even resemble the dictionary definition, or reality of fundamentals in real practice.

From Miriam Webster:
Definition of fundamentalism
1 a: often capitalized : a movement in 20th century Protestantism emphasizing the literally interpreted Bible as fundamental to Christian life and teaching
b: : the beliefs of this movement
c: : adherence to such beliefs a minister noted for his strict fundamentalism
2 : a movement or attitude stressing strict and literal adherence to a set of basic principles

Even the definition on Urban Dictionary closely reflects this same definition.

The problem is that even someone who practices fundamentalism, is often painted by the kind of black and white brush that the critic is so offended by. Doesn’t that make that critic also fundamental in their belief against a fundamentalist person?

In the original, now non-existent recording, Chris and Keith discuss how real fundamentalism is practiced. It has nothing to do with suppressing complexity. Rather using fundamental building blocks and skill is the foundation to grow into complex environments. Here’s a sample of what we mean. Think of learning the fundamentals of arithmetic. Remember 1st grade? Simple addition and subtraction. You need to learn it, practice it. Master it. Fast forward to college, and advanced algebra or calculous. To survive the complex world of the formula in front of you, you use the same fundamental concepts you learned long ago to crunch the numbers, and apply to the strategy in the formula’s complex function. Fundamentals are ingrained in the core of what you know, not layered over the complex problem to suppress it.

Finally, a presentation of an open source book by CI
Schofield, Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth. Keith reads from the table of contents, and the introduction. Since Chris wasn’t available to re-create his classy, colorful commentary, the Retrobots lend a hand with a bit of righteous reading.

Basically, the book is a short one, and doesn’t make an effort to cover the entire bible. Schofield presents a handful of core teachings that he felt all Christians should know. The purpose is to demonstrate how to properly discern, or using his words, and the King James era writers, to divide the word of truth. Taking the bible literally means having an understanding of the context in which it was written, to who it was written, who wrote it. Historical events are literally true, and often are easily proved true by evidence when archaeologists uncover artifacts. Schofield also addresses the diligence a bible student should have in understanding that kind of context. Built on evidence, not on experience.

Being aware of interpretation fuzziness can also be rightly discerned. Comparing parallel versions, correctly applying the lesson, or principle the original historical event presents, and observing how the principle carries its message across the span of time. Knowing the difference between promises made to ancient people, more modern people, those outside the faith, to matters under law, as opposed to grace, and the understanding to know where they cross over, or where they don’t. Lots of complexity, but applying fundamental, core principles, is key to always being able to correctly divide the word of truth.

This is a topic that could likely resurface, but for now drop us a line if there are questions, or if something needs to be clarified.

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