It’s not a coincidence! Yes it is….

When somebody starts of a sentence by saying, “this might be just be a coincidence, but…” I immediately get skeptical.

When somebody starts off a comment in class by saying “this might be a coincidence, but…” I immediately roll my eyes.

Its my experience that most of the time when people say “this might just be a coincidence,” it turns out that it really is just a coincidence. However they believe that they have stumbled upon some mystery that has been hidden from human knowledge for ages. Point in case, my Eastern Religions Class…..

As you know, I am going to Moorpark Junior College for the sake of reaching college students with the gospel and equipping other students to do the same. So I enrolled in one class, Philosophy M12 – Eastern Religions. I figured that this would be a great class for outreach, after all its not a required class so whoever is in it will likely genuinely be interested in religious things. I am bound to find some seekers. Good strategy. (At least I think it is).

Any way there is this one guy who is kind of annoying. He goes of on all sorts of tangents. Day one we are talking about Vedic culture, somehow this guy gets on a tangent on Nazi’s, Tibetan Artifacts, Thomas Jefferson, and 6’2’’ Blonde Chinese mummies. He is the guy who believes he is Nicholas Cage and his life is National Treasure. Right off the bat I knew that this guy would be hard to handle.

Well day two rolls along, and we are talking about the Brahmin in Hindu Religion. I’m sitting there absorbing the professor’s knowledge, and then I see this guy’s hand go up. Now I know that he is “that guy.” You know, “that guy.” Nick Cage (that’s what I’m going to call him from now on) starts of a his comment by saying, “This might just be a coincidence, but…” and I think to myself, “But what? But what? What revelation from the gods do you have for our class today?” 

So he begins to say:

“You know Brahmin and Abraham sound a lot alike, and they have the same letters, is it possible, it might just be a coincidence, but”

My mind says, “Yea buddy…. It is just a coincidence now put your hand down

“Could it be possible that Abraham was a derivation from Brahmin, and that Abraham was actually a Brahmin?”

“No buddy… its not possible. That’s dumb. Now put your hand down.”

“Because originally his name wasn’t Abraham it was Abram.”

“Nice observation bro! I’m glad you can spell!”

As you can probably tell… I have a hard time with this guy. The professor was really nice to him though and gently told him it wasn’t likely. Then the guy proceeded to argue for his side, and just I couldn’t resist any longer, I had to say something! So I made an appeal to linguistics, talked about the differences between Semitic languages (of which Hebrew is one) and Indo-European languages. The Professor responded by saying, “that is right, I guess that settles it…”

I guess it wasn’t very fair what I did to the guy, since I have studied this stuff way more than he has, but it just had to be done.

The moral of the story is that the next time you say “this might just be a coincidence, but…” please stop yourself because almost every time it is “just a coincidence.”

But wait! I’m not going to end this post by being a jerk! There is redemptive value to this story. I think I found my person of peace for the mission to Moorpark! Neil Cole has said quite a bit about identifying persons of peace. He says that person’s of peace must have influence in a community, they must be well known. Why they are well known really doesn’t matter. They can be famous or notorious. They can be known for how great they are or how big of a jerk they are. Case in point: Matthew the Tax Collector and the Samaritan Woman at the Well. Both of these people were well known for all the wrong reasons. After I got all bothered by this guy, It struck me that everybody knows this guy for being that guy. This means that he might make the perfect person of peace.


Published by cwoznicki

Chris Woznicki is an Assistant Adjunct Professor of Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary. He works as the regional training associate for the Los Angeles region of Young Life.

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