I have two living grandparents—both old Dutch men with sharp minds, strong wills, and a full head of white hair. Peter DeYoung is my dad’s dad. I’ve mentioned him a few times already. Menser Vanden Heuvel is my mom’s dad. He was born in 1918 in a small farming community outside of Zeeland, Michigan. He was one of nine children and, from what I gather, did not suffer fools gladly. As a young boy, after a friend and he were being picked on, Grandpa Van told his friend, “If they start something tonight, I’m going to knock the tar out of the younger guy and when he’s down, you hold him down.” When I think of my Grandpa Van now, I think of how proud he is that I’m a pastor and how warmly he smiles at all his grandkids and great-grandkids. But I’ve known him long enough to imagine that back in the day you probably didn’t mess around with Menser.
The many-sided nature of Camus’s life makes it a veritable primer on modern secularism. Camus was a political activist, pacifist, and revolutionary. He was twice married but dismissive of marriage as an institution. He lived a sensual and disordered life. That chaotic life is itself instructive for Christians. If we want to see modern man “writ large,” Camus can supply our representative figure.
Richard Allen Greene:
Mainstream Christian theology’s position held that Judaism had been supplanted, the Jewish covenant with the divine no longer valid, because of the incarnation of God as Jesus and his sacrifice on the cross.
Jews, for their part, tended largely to ignore Jesus.
That’s changing now.
The glory and honor of human cultures — the music, the clothing, the literature, the dance, the languages, the customs, the humor, the traditions, and so forth — it will be cleansed and brought in. So Eric Clapton’s blues guitar, for example, is a preview of coming attractions. The blues will be brought into heaven. But there it will be even better. It will be perfect. I only hope and pray Eric himself will be there too.