The Mystery of God, Part II

Following up on yesterday's post on God's incomprehensibility, I want to share an eloquent excerpt on the same subject from the work of Boston College professor Fr. Michael Himes, S.J.:

To begin, what do we mean within the Christian tradition by the word God? God is not anyone's name. There is not some person out there someplace, much older, much wiser, much more powerful than you or I whose name is God. God is not the name of a class of which there happens to be only one member.

The word God is a bit of shorthand, a stand-in which functions in Christian theology almost as xfunctions in algebra. When working an algebraic problem, one's central concern is x. But x is the stand-in for the thing one doesn't know. That is how God functions in Christian theology. It is the name of the Mystery that lies at the root of all that exists. We must never forget that we are talking about mystery.

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