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Hmmm...

Reader comment on item: Is Allah God?
in response to reader comment: That's right. I am still waiting for more explanation.

Submitted by Rajesh (India), Sep 18, 2006 at 03:36

Dear Nuray,

The reason why I recommended these works was because they are really good. As I wrote earlier, they have not lost their flavor even after so many centuries. If you only take a bit of trouble to read them, you will find that you are indeed conversing with modern minds.

There was a time in my life when I almost lost my faith. So many voices, so many opinions, and a total confusion in my mind (My fault, I started reading all kinds of books and listening to all kinds of people). What was once so clear, suddenly became obscure. It was then that I realized that I had to learn the faith for myself and needed to have a clear understanding of my faith, otherwise I would lose it. There was one thing I noticed when I started learning more about my faith, whether it be from the Catechism of the Catholic Church or books by the Papal Preacher or others, they quoted very often from the Fathers of the Church. That made me interested in reading them. And reading them, I got a clearer understanding of my faith.

A modern mind in the this century can accept and recommend discussions made centuries earlier because the truth of Christianity is unchanging. The faith of the early Christians is my faith, there is absolutely no contradiction. "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever."

There are times when one understands something, but does not know how to put it in words, that was also one of the reasons why I recommended to you people who know how to put it in words.

The key to understanding the Trinity is Jesus. Jesus never "became a part of God," He is God. I know you must be objecting right now. That's okay. After all, Jesus is the stumbling block, "folly to the Greeks and blasphemy to the Jews."

Anyway, I'll try to explain by quoting a "modern source," the Papal Preacher from his book the Ascent of Mount Sinai (A Spiritual Journey in Search of the Living God).

"The one God, He who in the Bible says:"I am', is the Father who begets the Son and with Him (or through Him) breathes the Spirit, sharing His entire divine nature with them. He is the God of loving fellowship, in whom unity and trinity proceed from the same root and from the same act to form a Tri-unity, in which neither of the two qualities – unity and plurality – precedes the other or exists without the other, in which neither of the two levels is above the other or 'deeper' than the other.

The Living God of the Christians, in a word, is no other than the Living Trinity. The doctrine of the Trinity is contained in nuce in the revelation of God as love. To say:'God is love' (1 John 4:8) is to say: God is a Trinity. St Augustine explains the matter thus: every love implies a lover, a beloved and a love uniting them. But we too can explain the matter for ourselves, if in a slightly different way, God is love. But we know that every love is a love of someone or something; there is no such thing as love in vacuo, without an object. Now whom does God love, for Him to be defined as love? Human beings? But then, this love only dates back some hundred million years. The universe? But then, this love only dates back a few tens of billions. What about before then? Whom did God love, for Him to be love?

By conceiving of God primarily as 'thought,' the Greek thinkers and, generally speaking, religious philosophies of every age have given as their reply: God thought himself; he was 'pure' thought. But this is no longer acceptable once we say God is primarily 'love,' since 'pure love of himself' would be pure egoism which is not raising of love to the highest degree but the total negation of it. And here is revelation's answer, as made explicit by the Church: God is love from the beginning, ab aeterno, for, even before there existed any object outside Himself for Him to love, He had within Him the Word, the Son, whom He loved with infinite love, that is to say, 'in the Holy Spirit.'

This doesn't explain 'how' the unity can simultaneously be trinity (for us, an impenetrable mystery since occurring only in God), but it is enough at least for us to intuit 'why,' in God, unity has also to be plurality, has also to be trinity. It is because 'God is love'! A God who is pure Knowledge, or pure Law, or pure Power, would certainly not need to be threefold (for this would enormously complicate matters); but a God who is love above all, yes, He would, since 'between less than two, love cannot be.' 'The world must know,' writes De Lubac (Histoire et Esprit), 'that the revelation of God as Love confounds all it had previously conceived about the Godhead'. So Christians believe in only one God, who is nonetheless no solitary God."

"O You who are beyond all!

How else can we call You?

How can words speak of You who are the Ineffable?

Or the mind contemplate You who are the Incomprehensible?

You the Nameless One from who all names derive,

You the Unknown One from whom all knowledge comes!(St. Gregory Nazianzen)

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches quoting the Lateran Council IV (A.D. 1215):

"We firmly believe and confess without reservation that there is only one true God, eternal, infinite(immensus) and unchangeable, incomprehensible, almighty and ineffable, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit; three persons indeed, but one essence, substance or nature entirely simple."

It further teaches: "We do not confess three Gods, but one God in three persons, the 'consubstantial Trinity.' The divine persons do not share the one divinity among themselves but each of them is God whole and entire: The Father is that which the Son is, the Son that which the Father is, the Father and the Son that which the Holy Spirit is, i.e. by nature one God. In the words of the Fourth Lateran Council (1215), "Each of the persons is that supreme reality, viz., the divine substance, essence or nature."

John 10:30 "The Father and I are one."

John 10:38 "...even if you refuse to believe in me, at least believe in the work I do; then you will know for certain that the Father is in me and I am in the Father."

Rajesh


O God, from whom to turn away is to fall,

to whom to turn is to rise again,

in whom to abide is to stand firm...

God whom no one loses unless deceived,

whom no one seeks unless already called,

whom no one finds who is not purified...

Grant I may know myself and may know you." (St Augustine)

Submitting....

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