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Incomprehensible But Not Unknowable! (#1)

Reading theology today. Love thinking about the transcendence (God exists outside of space and time) and immanence of God (God is present within space and time)!

Transcendence … God exists above and independent
from His creation. He is “other.”

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Isaiah 55:8-9

Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
    How unsearchable his judgments,
    and his paths beyond tracing out!
“Who has known the mind of the Lord?
    Or who has been his counselor?”
“Who has ever given to God,
    that God should repay them?”
For from him and through him and for him are all things.
    To him be the glory forever! Amen.

Romans 11:33-36

Immanence – God is present with His creation!
He is Immanuel, God with us!

“So I will consecrate the tent of meeting and the altar and will consecrate Aaron and his sons to serve me as priests. Then I will dwell among the Israelites and be their God. They will know that I am the Lord their God, who brought them out of Egypt so that I might dwell among them. I am the Lord their God.

Exodus 29:44 – 46

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,  your right hand will hold me fast.

Psalm 139: 7 – 10

“… As the biblical story unfolds and
as God seeks to relate to his people, almost by definition
(i.e., this biblical story is a story about relatedness)
immanence takes center stage in how God reveals himself (although transcendence still hovers about continuously).”

J. Scott Duvall and J. Daniel Hays, God’s Relational Presence:
The Cohesive Center of Biblical Theology

Of course, in the Incarnation of Christ, we see both the transcendence and immanence united in one man! “For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” Colossians 1:19-20

Our God is incomprehensible but He is not unknowable!

I praise you because
you are artist and scientist
in one. When I am somewhat
fearful of your power,
your ability to work miracles
with a set—square, I hear
you murmuring to yourself
in a notation Beethoven
dreamed of but never achieved.
You run off your scales of
rain water and sea water, play
the chords of the morning
and evening light, sculpture
with shadow, join together leaf
by leaf, when spring
comes, the stanzas of
an immense poem. You speak
all languages and none,
answering our most complex
prayers with the simplicity
of a flower, confronting
us, when we would domesticate you
to our uses, with the rioting
viruses under our lens.

R. S. Thomas

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