Reflections on the Trinity – On the Incarnation

You counted it nothing to abandon your place in Heaven, O Word, to take on our flesh, on our behalf, to rescue us from ourselves. How could we ever dream of such a God who would love us enough to die for us? But you did more; you lived as us so as to redeem us.

In the beginning you created us and we rebelled against you. As you walked in the garden shortly after our rebellion you asked where we were, but you knew. Nothing is hidden from you Lord. You knew what had occurred and what we had done, but in your question you shamed us. You made us contemplate on the sickness that we had just done.

You were not without love or compassion. Rather than eradicating us, you lovingly fashioned animal skins to cover our nudity. My Lord, you did this as a foreshadow of your own death on our behalf! Just as Adam and Eve had become ashamed of their nudity in the Garden and needed to be covered, so too did we become ashamed of our nudity before your Law. But just as you did with Adam and Eve, rather than letting us lay there in despair, you fashioned yourself as a skin to cover our iniquity so that we might not be ashamed. How can my sinful mind ever hope to understand your love, O Lord?

You came into the world as we do, only without human father. It was the blessed Virgin Mary, the Theotokos, who you chose as the worthy vessel to carry you. We ask that you send your Spirit to us to aid us in following her example, for at hearing that she was to be blessed with you in her womb she humbly and joyfully submitted. May we too react in the same way when invited to hold you within ourselves! It is in Mary that we find the eternal mystery of how the infinite was contained to her womb, but this foreshadowed the mystery of how your would Spirit would be contained within us. Continue reading


Reflections on the Trinity – On the Word

O blessed Word of God, how we worship you! It is through you that all things were created. It is through you that we have existence. The begotten of the Father, but uncreated and timeless, you share all things with the Father except in this; you were begotten of the Father, not in the way we humans are begotten, but in a mystery that we mere humans will never know.

I reflect upon your good deeds and your revelation to us. Certainly God must have a Word, but not one that dissipates as soon as spoken as our words do. Rather, you are a person who shares in the divine essence of God.

How wonderful you are for the love you have shown to humanity. It was you who walked in the Garden with Adam and Eve, sharing with them the Divine wisdom that was meant for us humans. It was you who discovered humanity’s rebellion in the Garden and cursed us. But in the curse you showed such restraint! You showed such love! For you did not destroy us, but rather allowed us to continue.

It was you who guided Abraham’s path and it was you who met with Moses. You guided your people, the Hebrews, from Egypt into the land you had prepared for them. These have been your interactions with men, always guiding us along the path of righteousness.

You stood with the three in the furnace and you closed the mouths of the lions who desired to consume Daniel. You walked with Israel and guided her paths, but she turned from you as all humanity turned from you. But you did not despair. Instead of destroying us, O precious Word, you came down and lived amongst us!

Such blasphemy to the Jews and foolishness to the Greeks! That you, the begotten Word, would come down and live amongst us is unfathomable to all. But you took on our nature. My struggles are now your struggles.

When I sin, you are the one who forgives. When I am burdened, you are the one who guides me along the path to relief. You go between us and the Father on our behalf, issuing your forgiveness to us.

To whom can the burdened and tired take refuge? It is in you alone my Lord. It is in you that the weary may lay their heads and rest. It is in you that the traveler may find his home. It is in you that we learn that the mountains that impede our paths belong to you! There is no trial we can face, no persecution too great, that we cannot find hope in you O Lord! Continue reading

Random Thoughts – July 11

* If Obama is supposed to be the antichrist, and the typical Christian/Tim Lahaye Antichrist™ and such a person is supposed to bring in peace, prosperity, and is supposed to be cunning, wouldn’t this automatically disqualify President Obama from being the antichrist? (or any other president prior to him for that matter…many have experienced prosperity, none have experienced peace)

* I’ve noticed many churches cry out that they are authentic, but isn’t authenticity something that is seen in our actions and not something we declare verbally?

* What is the essence of Christianity? Christ crucified and raised from the dead on our behalf. If we reject any of that, then we do not embrace Christianity. If we change the meaning of any of those words, then we fall out of fellowship with 2,000 years of Christians who agree on what those words mean, with that agreement spreading from Orthodox to Roman Catholics to traditional Protestants.

* I believe Muhammad existed. I believe he said many wise things. I do not believe him to be a prophet. I do not believe him to speak the truth in all things. Thus, I am not a Muslim. If you believe Jesus existed, but was not the Son of God, was not correct in all things, and did not die and raise from the grave on our behalf, then at least be honest and do not call yourself a Christian.

* When people say they don’t find Christ compelling, that says more about their understanding of Christ than it does about Christ himself.

* It is better to yearn for the crucifixion of Christ than to present a tamed Jesus. It is better to side with Richard Dawkins than to side with a culturally acceptable Jesus.

* Jesus is not American. He is not African. He is not Latino. He is not black. He is not white. We cannot place Jesus in a culture, not because he is naturally rebellious against culture, but because culture is naturally rebellious against him.

* If you’ve ever said, “If Jesus were alive today, he’d treat [insert group here] like he did the Pharisees,” then you are the Pharisee. Who are you to be so arrogant as to think he wouldn’t come after you first?

* The passionate wear their t-shirts displaying their concern for the poor, the enslaved, and the broken down. The ethically minded buy free trade coffee and tea. The revolutionary creates websites and Facebook pages to enlighten us of the plight of the truly poor around the world. Yet the poor still suffer and are oppressed. The reason is not apathy or governments. The reason is Christ’s body is slow in bringing them hope; it is only through Christ that the poor can find riches. It is only in Christ that the hungry can find food. It is only in Christ that the sick can find healing. Do not take this saying to refer to physical things.

* What use is it to help the physical needs of the poor, but fail to tell them about Christ? What use is it to tell the poor about Christ, but neglect their physical needs? In the first instance, we help their body, but not their soul. In the second instance, we help their soul, but not their body. Either way, the whole of man, who is in the image of God and who has been sanctified in the Incarnation, is neglected.

* It is unpopular for conservatives to speak of overconsumption, mostly because the discussion of overconsumption comes with the idea of government regulations. But what about virtuous regulations? Though we should be against government intrusion, shouldn’t we look at the idea ethically? After all, do you really need to consume as much as you do?

* Overconsumption simply betrays the deeper problem of materialism. Materialism simply betrays the deeper problem of not relying on God. Not relying on God simply betrays the deeper problem of not trusting God. Not trusting God betrays the bigger problem of our desire for autonomy. Autonomy is the root of all sin. Overconsumption is the symptom of a sin.

* The god of the Emergent movement must experience an identity crisis. On one hand, they say he is immanent, but never show how. Rather, they speak of a god who cannot communicate to his people, who may or may not have created the world, who may or may not have come in human form, or who may or may not be. If we cannot know God as he has revealed himself, then what is the object of our faith if not ourselves?