I’ve been enjoying my friend Shane’s book for the past couple of days. It is a compelling story and a fun read. One that makes you smile and shake your head and quote a piece of it to whomever is within earshot. I’m slightly bothered that so many Amazon comments and back cover blurbs (and even the foreward!) take that “he’s a young radical…” angle, as if this is some generational phenomenon, or like he’s half-crazy, or like it’s a passing fad or something. It seems patronizing, though perhaps it is some kind of psychological protection for the blurb writers or somesuch. No matter– it is a great book.
Here’s a breathtaking Kierkegaard quote that Shane cites:
The matter is quite simple. The Bible is very easy to understand. But we Christians are a bunch of scheming swindlers. We pretend to be unable to understand it because we know very well that the minute we understand we are obliged to act accordingly. Take any words in the New Testament and forget everything except pledging yourself to act accordingly. My God, you will say, if I do that my whole life will be ruined. How would I ever get on in the world? Herein lies the real place of Christian scholarship. Christian scholarship is the Church’s prodigious invention to defend itself against the Bible, to ensure that we can continue to be good Christians without the Bible coming too close. Oh, priceless scholarship, what would we do without you? Dreadful it is to fall into the hands of the living God. Yes, it is even dreadful to be alone with the New Testament.
So here’s to Soren and Shane. And here’s to respecting them enough to let them be undomesticated and uncategorizable.