Christian takes issue with letter about faith
June 28, 2011 · 2:25 PM
I read with interest Mr. Chinn’s article in The Enumclaw Courier-Herald (Letters to the Editor, June 22). I missed the June 8 article to which he referred, but want to respond to his understanding of fear. Fear, in the Bible, is used in many ways. And yes, many religions are fear-based. But as I read and understand the New Testament (which fulfills Old Testament prophecy), I find another kind of fear.
Quoting Spiros Zodhiaties’ “The Complete Word Study of the New Testament,” “Eulabeia; godly fear, (Heb 5:7, 12:28); predominantly used in good sense, though like ‘phobos’, fear, it has not altogether escaped being employed in an evil sense. Eulabeia relates to the good and ‘deilia’, cowardice, relates to the bad, with phobos, fear or reverence... adj: eulabes, devout.” End of quote. Also, from Webster’s College Dictionary, definition No. 4, reverential awe. Godly fear is not a bad thing.
I also want to respond to his understanding of “spirituality.” Spirituality covers the gamut of religions. It is expressly different from Christianity. He is missing the mystery of the Bible. In his article he asks, “What would our world look like if we taught our children from an early age that they were precious, unique and 100 percent worthy from ‘day one’?” We are created in the image of God – it doesn’t get more precious or unique than that. But we are not created as puppets, controlled by God. He has given us free will. While that may appear as a flaw, God wants us to choose him. Our purpose here on earth is to bring glory to God by making choices that honor him. Our role model is Jesus Christ; we follow his teachings and example. Our worth, comes that way. Intellectually speaking, he probably knows all of this, or has heard it. “Inherent spirituality” is the vacuum in our souls, in our lives, that we try to fill with many things. His notion of spirituality being one of them. I’ve tried that. It’s empty.
I believe the Bible to be the inspired word of God. (I’m wondering what the expression on your face is as you read that!) I have learned that God is worthy of extreme awe, reverence and yes, fear. He has great power to destroy those who ultimately will not give their hearts to him. But, and a big but, God has chosen, through his son Jesus Christ, to give us the ability to give our hearts to him; and, through the power of the Holy Spirit, to do his will – to love our neighbors as ourselves and everything that embodies. That’s a good thing.
He says in his article, “Maybe our churches could be known for enhancing spirituality and worthiness rather than pointing our unworthiness and the worthlessness of this life...” He says he speaks to young people, those more conscious souls. I’m not a young person, I am 62. So I do not get what he means by “inherent spirituality.” How did he, at age 50, get so lucky as to understand it?
Sandra Cancro, Christian