駁唐崇榮「空氣說」(下)

續 回應:「唐崇榮:信耶穌才得救?這樣霸道!」(上)

我們將要問的是:為何耶穌所說的,能是符合事實的真理?

將歷史給神學化的德國神學家潘寧博(Wolfhart Pannenberg)提出,能將基督教終極論述給證實或證偽的經驗元素,是在末世、在那眾人都將見主面的審判臺、白色大寶座前。在那之前,我們應當「懸置判斷」,將信仰從科學性的牢籠中拯救出來。然而,一位肯差派自己獨生愛子降世為人傳講真理的上帝,會需要讓我們等到末世才能看見這份信仰的合理性嗎?就如對某位宣講「 2012年五月海嘯將引發世界末日」的所謂先知,我們不需要等待到那一天才能決定自己是否要成為他的信徒。就算我們肯等,到了那一天災難發生(或沒發生)時才信也來不及了。

筆者以為,在我們的佈道訴諸一般理性或日常理性之前,我們還需對自己的邏輯更嚴格。

還原基督信仰之可證實性和可證偽性的護教學,近代還要歸首功於上世紀英國文豪魯益師(C.S Lewis)。在《唯獨基督教》(Mere Christianity)中,魯益師說:「若耶穌只是一個人,而說了祂所說的那些話,那麼他不但不能使自己成為一個偉大的道德教師。他若不是個瘋子,就 是地獄的魔鬼。你一定要作出決定。他要不是神的兒子,就是一個瘋子,或更邪惡的東西。你可當祂是個傻子,鎖著祂;不然你就是跪在祂面前承認祂是和你的神。但讓我們不要對祂偉大教師身份,傲慢地作出任何無意義的評價。」

他認為基督教中所信仰的耶穌,要不是騙子(Liar),要不就是瘋子(Lunatic),要不就是主(Lord)!

對 這世代的懷疑論者佈道,我們必須回到我們信仰所宣告的一切,逐步積累和建構或然率的論述( »cumulative case argument »)。具體地說,如果基督福音的一切是關乎「神與人同在」、「神與人和好」,那麼論述基督信仰真實性的工作就要從「神蹟」開始。所謂「神蹟」,乃是神做事所留下的痕跡,有三個層面。

breathe

 信主的人能行主也能行的神蹟-馬可福音十六:17-20節中說:「信的人必有神蹟隨著他們.就是奉我的名趕鬼.說新方言.手能拿蛇.若喝了甚麼毒物、也必不受害.手按病人、病人就必好了。主耶穌和他們說完了話、後來被接到天上、坐在 神的右邊。門徒出去、到處宣傳福音、主和他們同工、用神蹟隨著、證實所傳的道。阿 們。」

有人按照經文鑑別(textual criticism)的考據方式說,這段經文不是原初耶穌和使徒的話,是後來的門徒加上的。那更好,因為這樣我們更能從形式鑑別(form criticism)的角度說,這就是早期門徒在日常生活與服事中所信仰的、奉行的原則,他們才有立場把這段原先可能屬於口傳的教訓加上馬可福音的末尾上。

神蹟和靈恩的大能現象,在初代教會以及現今第三世界福音興旺的地區都在不斷發生上演,但今日我們大多數物資富庶、科技進步的地方教會已經失去了。我們 十分需要第三世界弟兄姊妹為我們帶來神蹟見證和聖靈恩膏的復興。

  歷史上耶穌基督復活的神蹟-作 為睡了之人初熟的果子,我們需要查考和宣講耶穌基督的復活。英國聖公會主教賴特(N.T. Wright)的著作 《復活的上帝之子》(The Resurrection of the Son of God)幾乎是這方面必讀的作品。如果說五餅二魚和平靜風浪都是離開現場後就死無對證的神蹟,空墳墓和釘痕的雙手與綻開的肋旁則是歷史確鑿的記號。

空墳 墓、裹屍布,和耶穌復活在世顯現的四十天,都無疑上帝要在歷史中留下真實見證的作為。我們的信仰不是「 2+2=4」 這種虛化的理型概念或「圓是圓的」這種套套邏輯的自訂真理。它充滿著上帝的手在人類可見的歷史範疇中具體的介入。

這些是需要被探索與宣講的歷史問題。因為 若是失去這個陣營,基督教會落入唯信主義(fideism)或存在主義(existentialism),和世界上其他偉大倫理教導和宗教便在科學性和沒 有一點區別、都不存在認識論實證性上的「真值」。而這不是聖經的教導,因為就連好懷疑的多馬,主都請他伸手探入祂的肋旁和摸他的釘痕,使多馬伏地認信: 「我的主!我的神!」羅馬書一:20節說:「自從造天地以來,神的永能和神性是明明可知的。」我們若從自然界的所造之物能為一位「自然神」(Deus)的 信仰立案,則從耶穌的死與復活我們則將看見聖經中三位一體的神是在歷史中有根有基的。

  信徒生命被翻轉的神蹟-耶穌的門徒必須活出永生的確據與盼望的生命品質。這是福音救恩最大的見證。在馬太福音十六:4節耶穌說:「一個邪惡淫亂的世代求神蹟, 除了約拿的神蹟以外, 再沒有神蹟給他們看。」又在約 翰福音十二:24節說:「一粒麥子不落在地裏死了,仍舊是一粒;若死了,就結出許多子粒來。」

約拿的神蹟是什麼?就是人子三天三夜後從死裡復活、尼尼微的 全城翻轉悔改、是那死去的麥子結出的許多子粒,叫那昨日流淚撒種的,如今可以歡呼收割。我們的信仰若要多結子粒,就要讓聖靈在我們信徒的品格上發旺,結出 那以仁愛、喜樂等美德為名的諸多好果子(加拉太書五章:22-23節)。

約翰福音十三章34~35節說:「你們若有彼此相愛的心,眾人因此就認出你們是我的門徒了。這是在社會公共視角中,最有力的護教學與佈道預工了-如果它可以被稱為預工的話。

領受基督永生福音所需要的信心,與呼吸空氣而活這一秒鐘的信心,絕對不同。你準備好做出信心的跳躍了嗎?

[書摘] The Time that Remains: Hans-Georg Geyer in the Intellectual Debate about a Central Question in the Twentieth Century

The Resurrection from Grünewald's Isenheim Alt...
Resurrection

Source:

Gerrit Neven, ‘The Time that Remains: Hans-Georg Geyer in the Intellectual Debate about a Central Question in the Twentieth Century’ in Theology as Conversation: The Significance Of Dialogue In Historical And Contemporary Theology: A Festschrift For Daniel L. Migliore, Bruce McCormack and Kimlym J. Bender eds., Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2009, pp. 67-81

My Summary:

Whereas initially Nietzsche and Marx only proclaim the death of God, Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze proclaim with equal force the death of a man (cf. Michel Foucault, The Order of Things, 1994, esp. the last chapter, and Gilles Deleuze, The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque, 1993).

Following Barth, Geyer gives the Parousia the determinative role concerning various theological aspects of reconciliation. The Messiah’s having drawn near is the precondition of a future-oriented and therefore a dialogical mode of thinking. The Parousia points to a nearness of salvation that does not supernaturally demolish time and history, but rather breaks open time and history from within [messianically] by turning to the risky expectation of the Messiah, for whom each moment in time is an open entrance.

This expectation leads to intensive forms of discussion and debate with not just  theologians but also with [critical and phenomenological] thinkers like Nietzsche, Husserl, Heidegger , Horkheimer, Bloch, Sartre, and so on. The focus is the humanity of Christ.

(Hans-Georg Geyer [1929-1999]  studied in Frankfurt during 1950-1954 with Hans-Georg Gadamer, Max Horkheimer, Theodor W. Adorno, and Wolfgang Kramer before he turned to the study of systematic theology (at Gottingen, Berlin, Wuppertal, and Bonn.)

As early as 1962, Geyer declared his agreement with Walter Benjamin’s Theological-Political Fragment. According to Benjamin, only the Messiah himself will consummate all that is happening historically, in the sense that only he himself will redeem and consummate the creation in its relation to the messianic.[1] Therefore, nothing historical can relate itself to something messianic on its own account. With this, he distanced himself from the idea that historical convictions, scientific achievements, or political opinions have in themselves the potential to make “the jump-ahead” to a time which is qualitatively new and different. Our knowledge is determined by economic and political factors. The desire to know is driven by a force consisting only of what can be [pragmatically or in a utilitarian manner] calculated. This [social/structural] force and the history of freedom contradict each other (analogous to the tension between poststructuralism and structuralism/rationalism).

Geyer here introduces the topic of faith in the post-liberal sense. He says, “faith, getting involved with and trusting upon the message concerning Christ, is at the same time radically renouncing the desire to discover the truth of the proclamation and past history”.

This criticism of metaphysics (of absolute certainly) is also part of the thinking projects of Moltmann and Pannenberg, for whom the future became the paradigm of transcendence. But both of them have felt that they have to leave Barth behind for they deem Barth’s system closed and ahistorical. Geyer does not share this view.

Geyer inherits early Barth’s dialectical theology. He is convinced that our time is an implication of the Parousia of Jesus Christ. His intensive debate with Moltmann and Pannenberg  is concerning the epistemology of hope. That is to say, if God’s new coming in the Parousia is an implication of the concrete identity of Jesus Christ, then how do we find his identity? He doubts whether for Moltmann and Pannenberg “the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ” are constitutive–and as opposed to merely illustrative— of the exegesis of biblical texts and of the practices of the Christian community. For according to Geyer, Moltmann and Pannenberg’s definition of history and Parousia did not clearly distinguish “the future as an end that we should strive for” (the anthropocentric) from “the future as the goal of God’s exclusive act” (the theocentric). His ultimate criticism is that the theology of Moltmann and Pannenberg is enclosed by a metaphysical correlation between God and the world. Transcendence is devoured by immanence.

To solve this problem, Geyer here uses Husserl’s concepts of protention (the succession of the historical accordance and its end) and retention. The protention in Jesus denotes the continuity between the character of Jesus’ conduct and his fate—death. According to Geyer, this historical fate can undergo an intensification or an ontological deepeningonly by the event of the meta-historical resurrection in Easter” [out of theological necessity].

By retention, it means when we look back, the attempts to ignore this fact or to place this death within an unduly higher framework can only lead to an idealization of his death or a degradation of it to an empirical fact (which is an unduly anthropologized theology full of liberal residues). Namely, the declaration that this historical death implies a [whether phenomenological, hermeneutic, or ontological] jump-ahead should be fiducially rooted only in the meta-historical domain, in [the post-Easter] remembrance, which runs backwards. This solution does not have to leave behind the aporia of this [historical] death. For at any rate, doctrinal or impersonal statements are not possible in the face of this death. Anamnesis and commemoration of this death can only give us non-metaphysical and personal truth. The redemptive history is inherently incomplete if all we have is this death of Jesus.

On the other hand, knowledge concerning the identity of this Jesus can only be acquired by participation in the process of the actuality of this meaning question in the medium of human language. That is why the question concerning the meaning of the cross is characterized by an infinite openness— as opposed to the enclosure of totalitarian metaphysics. For Geyer, the hope is the qualitative feature of faith, which is a prerequisite for new non-metaphysical mode of thinking.

In accorance with the nature of hope, Parousia concerns the future of which no one has sure knowledge of the time and the hour— it is beyond human calculation: Although we are vitalized by images of the future (e.g., Luke 21:7-33), these do not lead us into the future itself.

rhızomıng ındεxatıon dıs-choıcεs . .
Badiou

There is a remarkable parallelism in the thinking of Geyer and Badiou about metaphysics. Badiou establishes that « the death of God » and « the death of man » go hand-in-hand in the ethos of 20th century philosophy and theology. He calls them “the joint disappearances of Man and God”.

On one hand there is in the 20th century philosophy the movement that radicalizes Kant’s approach by enslaving man in his own emancipation (i.e., German idealism: our [finite] subjectivity creates our world). This line runs from Kant via Fichte and Sartre (man is condemned to freedom; man is programmed to be a man and cannot be freed from this program). On the other hand, there is the way of the radical anti-humanism of Nietzsche and Foucault: the absence of God is one of the names for the absence of man.

As Foucault (he criticizes Levinas and Derrida’s anthropology as religion or theology), Badiou does not think this either or situation leaves room for postmodern thinkers like Levinas or Derrida. For Levinas’ appeal to God’s radical otherness in order to safeguard the otherness of the human other falls short to attest to a radical alterity. (This means that in order to be intelligible, ethics requires that the other should be in some sense carried by a principle of alterity which transcends mere finite experience. cf. Badiou, Ethics [2001], 22). As for Derrida’s deferral of presence (différance), a sort of religion of messianic delay, Badiou sees something too artificial in its ramification upon the relation between philosophy and religion (cf. P. Hallward, Badiou: A Subject to Truth [2003], 157). Postmodernity has become boring.

Badiou searches for what is empty and open in a time when the [human and divine] subject has disappeared. There is no other possibility than to accept this aporia, this emptiness, and to retain a prospect to point beyond death. For Geyer, this means the resurrection and the coming of the Messiah— within the perspective of time. Biblically speaking this is the time that remains, a time of intense expectation (cf. Isa 21:11). [2]

Giorgio Agamben, Benjamin’s disciple, in The Time That Remains: A Commentary on the Letter to the Romans declares “what remains is what separates us from the Messiah”. More than the Messiah’s coming close is the Messiah himself.

Giorgio Agamben descubre el limbo
Agamben

[1] The polemical context which Geyer (and possibly Benjamin) set out to argue against includes the following features (i.e., wrong assumptions):

1)       non-realism,

2)       post-structuralism,

3)       the totalitarian features of modernity in the 1960s (for which Geyer thinks Horkheimer’s treatment in the 1930s is exemplary. He lost faith but has not abandoned the project of human transformation of the society into a utopia).

4)       reciprocal freedom: the promises that somebody gives to someone else are ruled by a relationship of absolutely free reciprocity and by a reciprocal freedom.

[2] Here one may become somewhat apologetical over against Badiou. Badiou teaches with Nietzsche that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is dead. According to Nietzsche, faith in God as a supernatural power in general will no longer have any real influence, since God is not ascribed any power anyway. There is no such metaphysical God. However, it is precisely this faith that would be necessary to determine the convictions and the actions of man. This may be the case, Geyer answers Nietzsche. But even if God has lost his power over man and that super-sensual heaven has no meaning for the sensual earth, it does not necessarily follow the death of Christian theology.

Through Barth, Geyer has found a way forward: Christian theology has the task to lead faith out of its dogmatic identification with the concept of religion that is still metaphysically determined. Geyer rejects Nietzsche’s analysis that lumps together the God of metaphysics and the God of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Unlike the metaphysical God, the God of the Bible can die.

On the basis of this God’s death, people in faith received the power to be really earthly finite and to be able to die. In the Christian faith, God’s identity can only be thought of appropriately when we take as point of departure the view that the death of Jesus Christ on the cross is God’s act on behalf of all.

The occurrence of cross in history demands remembrance and mimesis: the imitation of God in the praxis of love for one’s neighbor. God is a name that has to be continued in a passionate plea to practice love, as opposed to a concept that asks for ideological representation. Remembrance implies mimesis, through which we anticipate the coming of God in the Parousia.