Posted by: Dan | July 15, 2005

Embracing Mystery

For a long time I was put off by any theological talk around the notion of mystery. The suggestion that there are mysteries involved with faith, or with God, reeked too much of a church hierarchy that maintained a strangle-hold on the average person. In my mind mystery was too closely linked with the abuse of authority. Couple that with a cultural aversion to anything that cannot be explicated logically based on things that are “obvious” and it seems only natural that the notion of mystery is one that would make a lot of us uncomfortable.

Only recently have I begun to change my mind. I am indebted to Jon Sobrino for his talk about mystery in Where is God?, for that is what finally broke through my old way of thinking and enabled me to see mystery as something beautiful. Suddenly I discovered a mystery that was lovely and even desirable.

At the time I was reading Sobrino I was also also beginning to realise how incommunicable certain experiences are. I have no way of conveying what it is like to encounter God or what it is like to know Jesus as my Lord. Intimacy with God — Father, Son, and Holy Spirit — is the great mystery of the Christian faith. This is so because such intimacy is completely foreign (and incomprehensible) to those who live outside of that relationship.

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