Saul of Tarsus did not argue

Theologian C. Baxter Kruger writes:

The West has been locked in an overly rationalistic view of knowledge. Compared to the “hard facts” of science or the logic of “pure reason,” any talk of intuitive knowledge, of personal encounter with Jesus, or of knowing in the Spirit has largely been dismissed as subjective romanticism. But as Pascal said, “The heart has its reasons, which reason does not know.”  Faith in Jesus Christ is rooted in personal encounter, not in abstract logic or in the wisdom of the age, or in “scientific fact”—and thank the Lord, for whatever “scientific fact” is, it seems to change as often as a politician’s opinions. This does not mean that faith in Jesus is illogical or unscientific, but simply that its basis is a real encounter with Jesus through the Spirit.

On his mission of persecution, Saul of Tarsus was struck blind by a light from heaven as he traveled the Damascus road. He heard a voice addressing him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” Saul answered with a question: “Who are You, Lord?”
And he got his answer: “I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.”  Saul was shocked, to say the least, but he did not argue, and that is what fascinates me. Something indisputable had happened. Saul was a bright and highly educated man, and he had an awful lot to lose, but this revelation of Jesus simply and quickly outweighed his trained judgment and intense prejudice. The appearance of Jesus rocked Saul’s world and led him into a massive change in his way of thinking. Saul of Tarsus became Paul the great apostle and bondslave of Jesus Christ:

And when I came to you, brethren, I did not come with superiority of speech or of wisdom, proclaiming to you the testimony of God. For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified. And I was with you
in weakness and in fear and in much trembling, and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God.  (1 Corinthians 2:1-5)

It is this inner world of Pascal’s “reasons of the heart” and Paul’s “demonstration of the Spirit and of power” that the Spirit loves.  To speak of such a world may make a rationalist suspect that we have “a few ’roos loose in the top paddock,” as the Aussies say, but it was a reality to Saul of Tarsus and to millions of others throughout history.

the-shack-revisitedC. Baxter Kruger, The Shack Revisited

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