„Another thing, Socrates. I thought I recognized Epicurus too, though I have never met him. I realized that only after we left him and his face appeared in my memory superimposed on the face of another man. Now I know where I’ve seen him before. He’s a dead ringer for Hugh Hefner, the head of a network of playpens in my world. Was that Epicurus or Hugh?”
I was not surprised to receive another mysterious answer: „You assume it was one or the other. How do you know it was not both?”
„Do you mean reincarnation?”
„No, I would not now call it that. I was a wee bit off in my guesses back then. But not wholly off. I would call it reindoctrination.”
„What do you mean by that?”
„Do you remember, in your Bible, Jesus saying that John the Baptist was the prophet Elijah come back?”
„But Jews (and Christians) don’t believe in reincarnation, do they?”
„No. So what does it mean, this ‘reindoctrination’?”
„Not one soul migrating into two different bodies, but one philosophy migrating into two different souls. As John the Baptist thought and taught and did what Elijah did, Hugh Hefner thinks and teaches and does what Epicurus did. The similar faces were mirrors of the similar souls.”
„But they lived thousands of years apart.”
„This is a philosophical story that we are in,” he explained, „and we will confront opposite philosophies at each fork of your road. These philosophies are bodied forth to your imagination in the form of philosophers both ancient and modern. Time and history do not matter now. The same philosophies, the same alternatives, the same choices that you confront in your world, we ancients had in ours.”
Just as they say, I thought: the more things change, the more they stay the same.
The Journey: A Spiritual Roadmap for Modern Pilgrims, by Peter Kreeft
In this analytical and technological age there is no shortage of books on the church bookstalls, or sermons from the pulpits, on how to pray, how to witness, how to read our Bibles, how to tithe our money, how to be a young Christian, how to be an old Christian, how to be a happy Christian, how to get consecrated, how to lead men to Christ, how to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit (or, in some cases, how to avoid receiving it), how to speak with tongues (or, how to explain away Pentecostal manifestations), and generally how to go through all the various motions which the teachers in question associate with being a Christian believer. Nor is there any shortage of biographies delineating the experiences of Cristians in past days for our interested perusal.
Yet one can have all this and hardly know God at all.
J.I.Packer, Knowing God, p.23
This book by J.I.Packer was written in 1973. In 40 years, thousands of books on Christian topics like the ones described above had been written and it seems that, as knowledge about God grows like never before, less people really know God at all.
I had a big surprise when I first came in this country. I was expecting to taste a bit of that Christianity that shaped the evangelical Christianity in Romania. That type of Christianity and Christian authors that changed the world for Christ. Big mistake.
My awakening came when I’ve met a Chinese pastor at British Museum. He told me that, in the past, missionaries went from England all around the world. But now there is a need for authentic Christianity in UK. Now, those who benefited from that Gospel must come back and bring back that desire and passion about knowing God.
Unfortunately, this is a tragic moment in the history of this country. You cannot notice a dying Christianity in the UK. Yes, we know about God. A lot of noise. But, from what I’ve met, sadly, too many, don’t know God at all.