Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Explicating Omnipresence

Oden in his epic Classic Christianity (pp47-8), "No particle is so small that God is not fully present to it. No galaxy is so vast that God does not circumscribe it. No space is without the divine presence. God is in touch with every aspect of creation."

Oden provides a nice summary of scholastic teaching on the subject (here abridged),
God is:-
  • naturally present in every aspect of the natural order (Ps 8:3)
  • actively present in every event of history as provident guide of human affairs (Ps 48:7)
  • attentively present to those who call upon his name (Matt 18:19-20, Acts 17:27)
  • judicially present in moral awareness, through conscience (Ps 48:1-2)
  • bodily present in the incarnation of his Son (John 1:14, Col 2:9)
  • sacramentally present through the means of grace in the church (Eph 2:12, John 6:56)
  • sacredly present in special places where God chooses to meet us (Gen 28:16, 23:18)
A more youthful theologian (my 5 yr old daughter) explained to me that God's omnipresence was the reason for God's invisibility. After all, if God is everywhere and you could see him, you wouldn't be able to see anything else would you?

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