The Oasis - May 15, 2024

Author: Rev. Eric Dupee
May 15, 2024

             I’m a believer that bad theology is the source of much of the pain and suffering in our world. It’s bad theology that leads to senseless violence, oppression, Christian nationalism, and personal despair. When a person shares with me their lack of belief in God, I tend to ask, “What image of God is it that you don’t believe in?” Often, the thing in which they don’t believe is an immature or limited depiction of God, not the true, living God.” It is usually an image of God in which I don’t believe either. Theologian Paul Tillich once defined fundamentalism as “mistaking a temporary form of the truth for the entire truth.” I think it’s easy for any of us to fall into that trap. 
            This Sunday is Pentecost. I love Pentecost, because we celebrate the gift of the Holy Spirit to those first followers of Jesus. It comes as an important reminder that God isn’t just Creator and Christ. God is Spirit. The Spirit empowered the first disciples to go and spread the news of Christ’s resurrection. Within a short time, thousands of people were added to their number and churches were established far and near. It’s traditional to receive people into church membership on Pentecost, which we will do on Sunday. The color we use to represent the Holy Spirit is red. In keeping with a long-standing tradition, you are invited to wear something red to worship on Sunday.
            The following are sections of a poem composed by William Paul Young, celebrating the doctrine of the Trinity, highlighting the value of the Holy Spirit:
                        ONE alone
                                    is not be nature Love,
                                                or Laugh,
                                                or Sing…
                                    and if Everything is All and All is One
                                                One is Alone
                                                Not Love
                                                Not Laugh
                                                Not Sing
                                                At best Face-to-Face 
                                                            but Never Community
                                    Love for the Other’s Love
                                                And for the Other’s Love

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