Friday, September 08, 2006

The Ineffable Poverty Of The Divine, Incarnate, Crucified, Love

"Today we must investigate in what way the Christian wealth, without losses -such as a vanquished army leaves behind on the battlefield- relates to its origin: to the ineffable poverty of the divine, incarnate, crucified love. We draw close together, near to the sources and beginnings, in order to hear exactly the ‘Word that was in the beginning.’ We unite ourselves outwardly; the question is whether the grace will be given us to collect ourselves inwardly as well.

This will not work without earnest effort and thought. Dogmas which we now know only from the outside, as the ‘content of the faith,’ and which have mostly been presented to us as such in catechism and from the pulpit, we must try to see from within again: as the manifestation of trhe one single, indivisible truth of God. Supposing that this truth has presented itself to us as the eternal love which surprises us and lays its claim in us temporal creatures: Will not the basic articulations of the so-called Christian ‘doctrine’-Trinity, Incarnation, Cross and Resurrection, Church and Eucharist- become the immediate radiations of the glowing core of this truth? How should God, the One and Absolute, be eternal love, if he were not triune? And how, if he did not prove this being love to the end in the Cross and Eucharist for the world, which he created out love, and if he did not take the world up, in Church and Resurrection, into the eternally moved rest of the exchange of love? Dogmas must be nothing other than aspects of the love which manifests itself and yet remains mystery within revelation; if they are no longer this, then gnosis has triumphed over love, human reason has conquered God, and at this instant -first in theology, then in the Church, then in the world- God is ‘dead.’"

-Hans Urs Von Balthasar

No comments: