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Engaging All that Jesus Says

I love the way the Apostle John ends his gospel:

"Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written." 21:25

To think that Jesus said and did things that we know nothing about - actions that, were they recorded, would have been engaged as holy writ for the past two millennia - is a wonderfully unsettling truth.

First, it clearly affirms that the bible doesn't, and can't, say everything that could be said about who God is (protecting us from a scripture-only kind of bibliolatry).

Second, it opens the door to the question of what exactly would fill a 'world full of books' recording all of Jesus's words and actions.

I'm not sure if John had the idea of 'creation as a Jesus-revealing text' in mind when he penned these words (although he very well might have, given what he wrote in chapter 1:1-3!), but surely the fact of Jesus's unrecorded gospel words and actions are a pointer to his often unnoticed and unrecorded creation words.

If the bible is right, and all things are created in, through and for Christ, and are held together in him, then clearly the universe would not have enough room for the books that could be written.

There wouldn't be enough room for the science books alone; let alone those articulating Jesus's revelation through history, art, architecture and mathematics.

I know it's hard to imagine and engage unseen things (black letters on a white page are clear, close, and more easily intelligible), but if its true - if Jesus really is the author and sustainer of all things - then surely we need to take the risk, and make the effort, to seriously engage all that he is creationally saying!

But sadly, even as many ancient faith leaders were dismissive of Jesus's gospel words, many church leaders today continue to take a bible-only approach to God's revelation; leaving so much of what Jesus is saying unheard.

image - National Library of Ireland on The Commons [No restrictions], via Wikimedia Commons

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