I just finished leading an 8 week Adult Faith Formation class called ‘The Mystery of God’ by Bishop Robert Barron and Word on Fire ministries. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to explore some tough questions about God such as His nature and providence, the problem of evil in our world, and the mystery of the Holy Trinity (to name a few). Since class time is very limited, I always encourage the participants to email me with any troubling questions they may have. I recently received a question about Hell that had such an interesting slant that I felt compelled to share the question, and my response, in an SCT blog post.
In my previous post, I shared a story of a bumper sticker seen this week. I commented on that message from a Christian point of view, namely that Christianity is certainly not the homogeneous faith demanded by St. Paul:
10 I appeal to you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree and that there be no dissensions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. 11 For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there is quarreling among you, my brethren. 12 What I mean is that each one of you says, “I belong to Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,” or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided? … (1 Cor 1:10-13)
More specifically, that post was a call to action for all Christians. If we are truly the evangelists to the world that Christ intended then we better begin honestly examining our respective differences and vigorously try to close the gaps. This will require personal humility from all and a constant focus on our love of Jesus Christ and His love for us. To be sure, this will be a difficult task but not impossible. Without sounding melodramatic, I don’t think it is too much to say we seem to be standing at a turning point in historical Christianity.
But that was the last post. In this follow-up, I want to look at the bumper sticker from the position of Islam. I want to quickly summarize what the Muslim woman might have really meant and intended with that bumper sticker. I want to shed a little light on Islam and what they believe about Jesus.
The Simple Catholic Snapshots:
- There is only One God
- God is Love
- A Lover needs a Beloved, therefore there are at least two Persons in One God
- Love is Perfected when it is Given in Complete Self-Sacrifice
- God’s Love is Perfect
- Therefore, there are Three Persons in One God, Each Giving Perfect Self-Giving Love to the Others