So often, as I read theology, and listen to “theologians” theologise, I scratch my head. Sometimes I immediately grasp what they are communicating, and sometimes, and usually, I have to stop and think, and reflect upon what they are saying in order to begin to get a handle on what they are saying. They use big words, for precision of course 😉 , which capture and symbolize even bigger concepts. They speak of the “analogy of being,” the perichoretic intratrinitarian relationship, God’s ousia as it shapes His hypostasis, and how His hypostasis in turn shapes His ousia; they speak of His aseity, election (in its infralapsarian, supralapsarian, or even its “Barthian” form), His “ordained will” (de potentie ordinata) and His “absolute will” (de potentie absoluta), etc., etc.
This is all necessary talk, and it is talk that is really only allowed because God has so accomadated Himself to us in Christ by the Spirit. Even so, I often get the sense that such “profound” talk, in the end barely begins to scratch the surface of whom God is. I’m not denying that we are able to talk about God accurately, indeed this is what the incarnation has provided for us; instead I am trying to highlight how amazing it is that “we” can talk of Him at all! In the grand sweep of things we are so little, so feeble, so finite; the Psalmist captures this sentiment perfectly:
When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained, 4. What is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him? 5. For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor. ~ Psalms 8:3–5
God is so immense, so full of profundity, and complexity; and theologians try to capture this, with some feeble words. I guess my point, is simply to underscore the rose colored, piecemeal nature of “our” theology. It is to remind myself that our thoughts are little, our words are broken (even if by “human” standards they sound complete); and our attempts to do theology, while sometimes seemingly excel, by some, even these virtuosos’ words and thoughts are relatively little.
The most amazing thing is, is that our God is humble, and He became “broken,” and He became “little,” so that “our” words, by the Holy Spirit, potentially can be suited to actually bear witness to Him. So even though we use little words, and little thoughts to talk about our God; because of Him, the WORD, and His nature (humble, loving, self-giving, etc.), our words can be fitted to “really” point to Him, and indeed away from us!
I suppose the perspective that this brings, is if it weren’t for Him, our little words and thoughts wouldn’t mean much of anything. So instead of being too impressed with man’s little words (no matter how brilliant they “sound”), we should be more impressed with WHOM they point to (if indeed they achieve this); and that man’s words can indeed be commandeered for such a heavy task, at all.