May 8, 2003 Edwards on the Trinity
Read some from my CCEL disk last night and a couple of things struck me from Edwards' An Unpublished Essay on the Trinity What a read it is! This is heady stuff and requires attention- not light reading, but rather a worship experience in itself.

First his summary of the doctrine in Par 25.: "And this I suppose to be that blessed Trinity that we read of in the Holy Scriptures. The Father is the Deity subsisting in the prime, un-originated and most absolute manner, or the Deity in its direct existence. The Son is the Deity generated by God's understanding, or having an idea of Himself and subsisting in that idea. The Holy Ghost is the Deity subsisting in act, or the Divine essence flowing out and breathed forth in God's Infinite love to and delight in Himself. And I believe the whole Divine essence does truly and distinctly subsist both in the Divine idea and Divine love, and that each of them are properly distinct Persons." Wish I'd said that.

And from par. 55, a statement about the scriptures that resonates with what I believe and expressed in Edwards' inimitable way:

"I think the Word of God teaches us more things concerning it to be believed by us than have been generally believed, and that it exhibits many things concerning it exceeding [i.e., more] glorious and wonderful than have been taken notice of; yea, that it reveals or exhibits many more wonderful mysteries than those which have been taken notice of; which mysteries that have been overvalued are incomprehensible things and yet have been exhibited in the Word of God tho they are an addition to the number of mysteries that are in it. No wonder that the more things we are told concerning that which is so infinitely above our reach, the number of visible mysteries increases. "

Edwards starts off by saying that

"IT IS COMMON when speaking of the Divine happiness to say that God is infinitely happy in the enjoyment of Himself, in perfectly beholding and infinitely loving, and rejoicing in, His own essence and perfection, and accordingly it must be supposed that God perpetually and eternally has a most perfect idea of Himself, as it were an exact image and representation of Himself ever before Him and in actual view, and from hence arises a most pure and perfect act or energy in the Godhead, which is the Divine love, complacence and joy."

Perhaps this was common in Edwards' day-it is fresh and effervescent to hear it today. When's the last time you heard such from the pulpit? With Edwards, we see a picture of the Holy Spirit that is not all that common- the Biblical declaration that the Trinity is both the source and substance of holiness.

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I was reminded of the triune attributes declared by John in 1 John: God is righteous, God is Light, God is Love. That flow of 1 John also seems to manifest itself in Edwards' discussion of the Triune God who is One.

Tsidkinew-righteous God the Father begets Shekina-light God the Son from whom proceeds and is itself Hesed-lovingkindness -God the Holy Spirit- the Deity in act.

"'Tis the honor of the Father and the Son that they are infinitely holy and are the fountain of holiness, but the honor of the Holy Ghost is that holiness itself. The honor of the Father and the Son is [that] they are infinitely happy and are the original and fountain of happiness and the honor of the Holy Ghost is equal for He is infinite happiness and joy itself. "

Of course such words as "generate" and"proceed" and "a priori" relationships like action proceeding from understanding belie the fact that we are expressing the infinite with finite words and the timeless with temporal allusions. Submission in the Godhead is natural and it is eternal. As we relate to the eternal, God saves us from God by giviing us God. Simple but profound ramifications are there to be explored for eternity.

Recommended reading: Devotionals from are exceptionally good, I think. Sign up for them here.

May 7, 2003 Recommended listening:

The Hours by Phillip Glass. How better to score a movie that takes place in three tangentially related time periods than with music that strives for timelessness? Less is more here.

May 6, 2003 Celebrating a beautiful sky!
After all the rain , and more to come the sunshine coming through the window of my new office is worthy of capturing.
I haven't had an office window since 1987 at the Pink Palace where I had a whole room full of them- I was in the old planetarium/ballroom area of the old building.
May 6, 2003 A new cure for ankle sprain?

While climbing around on a trail at the Reflection Riding Arboretum I spotted a civil war era trench and some sunken gravesites nearby- while exploring them I sprained my ankle so that has been a hassle for the past few days. Aunt Helen used to say her 'Dogs were barking' when her feet hurt, so mine have been howling. Found this gif89a of a sprain that looks to me like the solution is to apply a telephone receiver to the location as a solution. Anybody ever heard of that one?

Pics from the arboretum to follow soon on these pages...

We're Baaack!

We dodged the weather to and from Chattanooga and were delivered safely back home Monday evening. Listening to reports of the devastation and praying consistently, we pressed hom,e wondering what we'd find. Despite all the forecasts, our area of Illinois was spared any damage it seems-

We missed the storm that hit Jackson Tennessee by about an hour near as I can figure it and our prayers go out to all who were affected by this very unusual pattern of weather.
Chattanooga was abuzz still with talk of the earthquake that hit there last week. I overheard one elderly lady conversing with another expressing her theory that it was't an earthquake at all but I couldn't discern what she proposed as an alternative.

I cannot figure this out. While waiting to pick up Earnie from the conference one day I decided to scan the local radio. What I heard just does not match up with what this reports. My quickscan says Chattanooga has 11 FM radio stations and 6 of them feature either Christian music or Ministry/Talk.

We were bombarded on a couple of occasions with a guy dressed in red white and blue preaching over a PA system on the street. While I have done this sans the garb, I've repented of it since it was zeal without wisdom in my case. The blue laws kept people inside until 12 on Sunday but there was this massive deluge of cars and traffic jams at 12:10. Pretty unsettling and one of the worst examples I've ever experienced of Christian corner culture. Sort of an epiphany for me.

Speaking of communicating I downloaded Soul Tsunami from (local bookstore couldn't order it) and listened to it while away. Pretty effective communication of a book in less than 4 hours. (I read the book last year) But I still have to wonder if it's not just another example of Christian corner culture with an ecumenical rather than evangelical twist.Nore as a friend and I discuss it.


From the personal weblog of Anthony Foster @