The divinely patient and love-filled answer of God to my prayer about guidance in the selection of a career…as a young man in college…went not at all according to what I naively thought I wanted, but what God knew I actually needed if I was to be able to grow in my knowledge of Christ and to understand some of the deep issues within the cross and the resurrection.
God’s answer to my prayer asking for worldly conventional normalcy in the career portion of my life, so that I could pursue Him undistracted by the cares of this world according to the shallow thinking of a beginning novice, turned out to be the direct opposite of what I expected.
Without divinely created and guided experiences, having some measure of adversity and challenge, I cannot grow into the fullness of the better person God had in mind when He created me.
If we truly seek God with all of our hearts and minds we will find Him, but not according to our initial, horizontally conventional thinking.
The God of the Bible that we find through life experience is not a shallow projection of our own imagination (1 Pet. 1:3). God is expertly and amazingly way ahead of us in laying out the precise routes to discovering truth in every aspect of reality and existence. This is one of the truly fascinating features of picking up our cross and following Jesus Christ into our unique and individualized callings.
Herein is one argument against the timing of a pretribulation rapture of the Christian church, found within the modern field of information theory.
If the pretribulation scenario as proposed today is correctly described in exhaustive detail upfront…like in the exciting and captivating Left Behind book series…then unpredictability, improbability, and information content potential are all reduced. The opportunity for God to creatively compose, using an information-rich end-times script, is reduced.
A God-composed journey of faith life-script is information-rich. It is not repetitive, redundant, or deterministic. The highest amount of information is conveyed within the biblical narrative stories of faith because the plotlines are novel and unique with uncertain outcomes…in-the-moment.
Even though there is the common pattern of the cross of Christ in every journey of faith life-script, there is what is called indeterminacy. Every narrative story of faith is different. There is no repetitive redundancy.
If the biblical narrative stories of faith and their resolutions were all closely similar…all narrowly predetermined…then less information would be conveyed as a whole.
For example, a romance novel that only has the word “love” repeated over and over for 100 pages provides very little information content.
God’s novel strategy for Gideon to repulse the invading Midianites, the unique approach for Joshua to bring down the walls of Jericho, Joshua’s request of God to halt the skyward progress of the sun in the middle of a decisive military battle, and Jesus walking on water, are examples where we can read the outcomes in hindsight but which were all in doubt and at risk in the moment they occurred.
Because the challenges in each situation differed, the solutions are unique and unpredictable. And because there are multiple possible alternative outcomes, the narrative stories of faith in the Bible provide maximum information.
Using an analogy to the concert grand piano…artistically created, musical piano compositions are indeterminate in that there are a nearly infinite number of combinations of notes, tempos, and styles available on the piano keyboard to produce improbable outcomes.
The music of Chopin is distinctly different from the music of Debussy, Rachmaninoff, or Scott Joplin.
At the level of artistic creativity, how do we identify and define great musical melodies? What is special about the simple melody of Beethoven’s opening notes to his fifth symphony? How did the Beatles or the Beach Boys come up with so many brilliantly creative melodies in their popular songs, when other musical artists can only manage single hit-songs that are referred to as “one-hit wonders?” How does composer and symphony conductor John Williams create such incredibly moving musical themes for his many movie scores?
This analogy to the concert grand piano, and the brilliance of musical compositions, helps us to understand the unique and elevated nature of the complex, highly-specified, diverse, artistically creative information that goes into a God-composed journey of faith life-script.
This then helps us to understand the ingenuity of the Christian life in the danger zone of faith, and to likewise be able to place our faith in the living God who is up to the task of writing and directing brilliantly insightful, issue-illuminating scenarios in our lives…no matter how darkly challenging in the present moment.
An irony therefore in the end-times prophetic debate is that one set of evidences that argues apologetically for the divine inspiration of the Bible…the presence of complex, specified, top-down information found in the ancient texts of these biblical narrative stories of faith…refutes the notion of a predetermined knowledge that the rapture of the Christian church would occur prior in time to the great tribulation.