Dispatch One Hundred Forty-Two

Posted: April 22, 2015 in Thirty-Fourth Bundle
Tags: , , , ,

1 JOHN 3:16-24

16 We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us—and we ought to lay down our lives for one another. 17 How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help?

18 Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action.19 And by this we will know that we are from the truth and will reassure our hearts before him 20 whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. 21 Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have boldness before God; 22 and we receive from him whatever we ask, because we obey his commandments and do what pleases him.

23 And this is his commandment, that we should believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. 24 All who obey his commandments abide in him, and he abides in them. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit that he has given us.

The divine Mystery shows itself to be multifaceted by virtue of the countless facets (or faces) through which and by which it is felt and known. While standing here on the near side of the threshold, the symbols that have revealed and embodied the divine are a variety as numerous as the world is wide and the imagination deep.

But on the far side of the threshold, behind the symbols as it were, all this nearly overwhelming diversity resolves into a single reality – or rather, it is seen as converging in and then pouring forth from the one gracious outreach of God. Sponge away the foreground array of symbols and you are left with a Mystery wholly unknown and unknowable, but lose sight of the reality beyond and all you have is a litter of competing idols.

Throughout history, what we are calling the gracious outreach of God has brought human beings into a progressively deepening encounter with the divine reality. At first, the power of God was experienced through the events of nature, then increasingly it became personified in more human-like qualities and actions. When Jesus came, we were shown the depths and energy of love to a degree never before witnessed (or even suspected). Christians experienced this radical love of God in the person of Jesus, and that has been their name for it ever since.

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