Episode 31 “The Tragic Beauty of Christmas”

The teleology of the universe is aimed at beauty…we can see this in the galaxies, the stars, the snow falling – and in our love for each other. There is beauty all around us.
Then there is the tragedy where the forces of evil threaten the beauty of life, the child is at risk, the reality of personal and institutional sin. Both the beauty and tragedy are in the Christmas story which Dr. Epperly and I examine in this episode.

2 thoughts on “Episode 31 “The Tragic Beauty of Christmas””

  1. A very nice and challenging episode which leaves me with a question: when there is such beauty all around us, and ugliness, as well, why do we choose ugliness? I am not convinced by the ‘original sin’ argument or ‘man has free choice.’

    1. A very relevant question, Cliff, one probably relevant in any age. Here’s an overly simplistic answer, but I think gets to the heart of a solution. Following Genesis 1, the world was created out of chaos (tehom). The Spirit hovered over this preexistent chaos and brought order to the creation. (We could go into a comparison of other ancient creation stories from the Ancient Near East, but they all make the same claim in various ways.) When Cain is told that “sin is crouching at the door,” this is another way of saying that chaos is always lurking and is potentially available at any time. Any movement away from the intentions God has for creation is a movement toward chaos. Here’s where free will comes in. We are constantly asked to choose between that which brings life (creation), or that which brings death (chaos). As it is said in Joshua, “Choose life,” and we will avoid chaos. Why do we so often choose ugliness? Well, Genesis also teaches us that humans prefer to be their own gods and go their own ways. We simply are not up to the task. I hope this helps.

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