On God-talk and view of God

August 7, 2007

After I wrote the post yesterday, I had to read something from Walter Brueggemann’s Old Testament Theology. I’ve been reading parts of it for the past two years, and it’s a great book. Well, all I actually wanted to mention, was that he also use the term God-talk, when talking about Israel’s ongoing theological conversation.

I’ve been realizing more and more that we need to talk about how we view God, or maybe more, how we think this world fit together, and how we think that God fits together with it. Not an easy task, and one that we should always remember that actually we have no idea, or very little of an idea.

Please remember the previous post when reading this! This is just my way of trying to show how I see things fitting together.

Do we see God as the “being” on the outside, that comes into “this” world? Many do, and there is a lot of merrit for this, I think that big parts of the Old Testament work with this view, and I can understand that some would like this idea. In this view, we need to work with things that break the normal rules of our scientific world-view, and God is this “being” that can break this rules. Of course, this also allow a “devil” that can do similar things.

 On the other extreme, but very similar, I think, is the view that these rules cannot be broken. I struggle to grasp this view, but I do experience it from time to time. God is a reality to some people, and I truly believe this, but not a God that break the rules of this scientific world-view.

In the end, and this truly isn’t rocket science, so sorry for those of you read all the way up to this point just to hear this, but I needed to try and formulate my thoughts, I think both these views consider a modern scientific world-view to be the limiting factor, with the one seeing God as breaking these rules, and the other seeing God as obeying them (mayor over-simplification, but I’m trying).

Brian Mclaren wrote somewhere in The Story we Find Ourselves in about God as the creator of a pool table, and obviously God is playing along, or something like that. I like a worldview where we remember that there is always more to this world than we could know. Some would talk about more dimentions, others about a deeper level of matter. I like to think of God as working on at a different level, in a different dimention, but this leve, of dimention, obviously have it’s effects on the observable level of humankind. This does not mean that God is the one breaking the rules of physics, rather that creation will always work in ways that we wont understand.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this as a back door for everything that I don’t know how to motivate or explain. Or as a back door for arguments which I cannot win, or something like this. Rather, I think we can open this up so that we can have conversation between people of differnet views. Those who know that rules of physics don’t get broken, and those that know that somehow God is involved in this world, God is having an influence on our existence.

OK, battery is going, so I’m posting now. Random thoughts… maybe, but somehow I’m trying to make sense of this faith experience, theological tradition, post-modern world, and scientific world in which I’m living.

One Response to “On God-talk and view of God”

  1. Tyler Says:

    Cobus.
    Good thinking…I’ve tended to take the view that, like you said, we do not know everything about the natural world we live in. I’ve understood it to be that God knowns all the rules because He created them, and wrote into the rules the places He would be moving. It could be summarized by saying that if we knew all the rules we would not be surprised to see where God has chosen to move in the world.

    Peace.


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