defined or confined?
I just read something from Huston Smith's fairly recent book, The Soul of Christianity. He suggests that:
there is a new mood in Christendom, a more conscious, general recognition that though for Christians God is defined by Jesus, he is not confined to Jesus.I like this. However, I'm not sure it is complete enough. I agree with the first part that God is defined by Jesus, that Jesus as represented in the scriptures is an analogy of what God is like. The second part, that God is not confined to Jesus, is less satisfactory to me. I know what he means... that the revelation of the divine encompasses Jesus, but that revelation is more than that and can be received through many kinds of means. I think we can all agree that the revelation of the divine is not only in Jesus, but also in nature, philosophical truth, science, etc. Some Christians might argue that the one and only revelation of God is in Jesus, that God is confined to Jesus, but I wouldn't find that sustainable. Rather, may I suggest that the Mysterious and Unknown is willingly confined to the incarnational and revelational, which Jesus embodies? Is it possible that the incarnational, revelational movement of the Mysterious and Unknown may be defined by Jesus but not confined to Jesus? To say that God is not confined to Jesus implies a pluralism I'm not ready to embrace. So, I ask myself if it is possible that all revelation is part of one unfolding movement? We know things according to time and according to space. But is it possible that this unfolding movement is not time specific or spatially specific? Although we might know that there have been different revelations down through history, is it possible that what look like isolated instances of revelation are really a grand, unfolding, incarnational movement? I think it is worthwhile asking these questions. The painting is one my watercolors called Cold Winter River (6"x10"; 15cm x 25cm). twitter me Check out my t-shirts HERE. I'm growing my inventory all the time. And check out my contemplative art here.