Pastor’s viewpoint: April 30, 2016

Published 6:00 pm Monday, May 2, 2016

Mary Ella and I were in Mobile to see our son recently, and on the way home, we stopped at our favorite restaurant for lunch. The waiter asked about the keyboard I have on my iPad. He explained that he was a musician and could use that keyboard with his iPad to compose music. He then said there is really nothing new in music; computers have already composed all the possible combinations of notes.
Maybe he missed the 2011 study by Holger Hennig, a physicist at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization in Gottingen, Germany? Looking at the differences between man-made music and computer-generated music, people preferred the man-made music with all its inherent imperfections. In every man-made performance, there are tiny flaws that follow an appealing fractal pattern. Even when the computer was re-programmed to include those fractal patterns, people still preferred the man-made music!
As you might know, music is a mathematical art form and the computer creates music by filling in a mathematical formula. But it seems, we don’t like that sort of artificial perfection; we prefer the tiny fractal (broken) imperfections so inherent in our human condition.
Paul writes to the little church in Corinth, So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! (2 Corinthians -5:16-21)
But don’t make the mistake of thinking the new creation  is perfect; imagine living with a robot who never made a mistake? In fact, our fractal (broken) imperfections are what make us unique and individual. Sin is not the tiny flaws and mistakes in our lives; sin is our rebellion against God.
So Biblical perfection is not a robotic, artificial perfection; Biblical perfection means we are in every way at every time obedient to God!

Charles “Buddy” Whatley is a retired pastor serving the Woodland Bold Springs UMC, a marketplace chaplain, and with Mary Ella, a missionary to the Navajo Reservation in Arizona.