Not all of us are attached to an angry God. Some of us are attached to an austere God and others to a boring god. Some of us are shaped by a view of a rationalistic god conditioned by the law-culture in which we have been raised. We have a ‘belief system god’ who is a god of sorts but a God who is far less the I AM of ultimate personhood that is the God of the trinity *. In this mode it is easy to do what comes naturally from our pattern of thinking. Even when we come into the Spirit we remain constrained in the law and proceed to explain the gifts and the life in the mode of the letter – unfortunately this is the letter that dulls and kills.
FATHER SEEKS YOU OUT
On such issues Jeff Turner writes, “I had no idea just how literally God would take my words, for over the next several years He began to shake everything that I thought I knew about who He was. The angry, distant, disappointed God I had once believed in began to be replaced by the Father revealed through Jesus Christ.” (1)
To Know Jesus is to know our Father. To agree that Jesus is our life is to open the door to the dissolution of lies we have believed and find ourselves drawn into the light of union with God.
The truth of incarnation means that in Christ - and I mean Paul’s usage of Christ our life as distinct from Christianity – we become woven into the trinity and a manifestation of the trinity. This effects how we do marriage and family as well as how we do church. It has a huge effect on how we see ourselves as daughters and sons. Which brings us to the point that..
SPIRIT OF SELF-KNOWING
Our life in God is never by reason of the law and always by reason of Christ. Thomas Torrance puts it this way: “To know this God, who both condescends to share all that we are and makes us share in all that He is in Jesus Christ, is to be lifted up in His Spirit to share in God’s own self-knowing and self-loving until we are enabled to apprehend Him in some real measure in Himself beyond anything that we are capable of in ourselves. It is to be lifted out of ourselves, as it were, into God, until we know Him and love Him and enjoy Him in His eternal Reality as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in such a way that the Trinity enters into the fundamental fabric of our thinking of Him and constitutes the basic grammar of our worship and knowledge of the One God" (The Ground and Grammar of Theology, 155).
Jesus the Christ is the meaning of life and the meaning of everything. All that there is not so much explained in words but in The Word – the life and the light who has not only come into the world but who has now come into us.
* Legalists find it easy to deny the trinity because the law is reductionist. Where there is life law reduces it to abstractions. Similarly they tend to think of the trinity as a hierarchy. But each is fully God and all are complementary to each other.
(1)Turner, Jeff. Saints in the Arms of a Happy God: Recovering the Image of God and Man (p. 32). Jeff Turner. Kindle Edition.