“Is not this the carpenter’s son...Whence then hath this man all these things? And they were offended in him.
Socrates thought he was the most intelligent fellow in town. He thought that because he realized that he knew nothing. Knowing nothing and asking questions that provoked thought got him sentenced to drink hemlock, so there is that. Realizing a long time ago that I know nothing. I have spent years collecting testimony to that realization.
However, there once was a time when like most young, indestructible, and incredibly good-looking men, I knew everything. I knew there was no God. I knew that every man was subject to the whims of chance. I knew that if you worked hard, did your duty, and were willing to stand against the crowd, respect and success would be yours. How I came to my present state of ignorance in just fifty years is just one more thing for which I have no answer.
I seemed to be doing fine until I ran into God. That confrontation really blew my no God, and everything is chance theories out of the water. I have to admit I breathed a sigh of relief to know God was all about working hard, duty, and standing up. Now, I’m not saying that God is against any of those things. I am here to tell you that it is no secret that these things bring neither respect nor success in this world.
Now, no matter what stage of life you are in, those outside of Christianity will question your sanity, service, and sincerity. That’s a given. It’s part of the price of peace with God. So be it. I walked away from that years ago.
What I suspect is true has changed very little in the last forty-eight years. It is not because I am resistant to change or know anything at all. It is that I’ve found that at any given moment my faith in God is too liberal, too conservative, too quiet, too vocal, too modern, too old fashioned, too literal, and too figurative. In other words, I know nothing as I ought. That is as it should be. I am nobody, the son of a man who built houses and roads. I am without a university education and of no reputation.
A Christian man of great learning once confessed that he made it a point to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified. He believed such knowledge was sufficient in itself. If Jesus’ knowledge was called into question, well, I am certainly no better than Him. I am content to allow my steadfastness to offend those, within and without the faith, who are looking for offenses.