Filed Under: Blog, Doctrine of Scripture, Frame Articles, Hermeneutics, Philosophy, […] the only one who is capable of moving the goalposts? Derek: I decided to be a priest when I was eight years old, so I was soaking up theology from a very early age—and I remember the simplest thing from when I was about ten years old: my priest drew a small circle on the blackboard. 21 These are the terms in which the matter must be phrased.  The controversy is between competing circularities, not between circularity and non-circularity. Well, who is right?  Does God’s transcendence include or exclude an authoritative verbal revelation of himself to men?  Note that this question must be faced squarely.  It is not enough to say that revelation must be seen in the context of God’s transcendence; for that transcendence has been understood in different ways, and one must therefore defend his particular view of it.  One does not get into the heart of the matter by saying that one view sees revelation “in abstraction from” God’s lordship; for the two sides do not agree on the nature of this lordship or the relation that revelation is supposed to sustain to that lordship. Barth, therefore, like Flew, argues that God cannot be truly spoken of in human language.  Here, it would seem, the resemblance between Barth and Flew ceases; for Barth argues “from above,” Flew “from below.” Barth argues that God is too great for language; Flew argues that language cannot speak meaningfully of God.  But are the two positions really that far apart?  Thomas McPherson suggests that an alliance is possible between the logical positivist philosophers and theologians like Rudolph Otto (McPherson might also have cited Karl Barth in this connection) who stress the transcendence of God over language: Perhaps positivistic philosophy has done a service to religion.  By showing, in their own way, the absurdity of what theologians try to utter, positivists have helped to suggest that religion belongs to the sphere of the unutterable.  And this may be true.  And it is what Otto, too, in his way, wanted to point out.  Positivists may be the enemies of theology, but the friends of religion.15. }NTa������Z7����sԶ�"��v���yBjXʶK���"}�m�5�j6�9,��u�kwuh�l�:��K$_�j�mX}!�mX�mĂ�rm��[email protected]�Й����������O.B#}����ƾm&��a|����x+��zW�Z�,�� $�N$;�kƮ׻�Jl:���kI�5q>����"�(�+>� God’s immanence is naturally contrasted with the idea of God’s transcendence, which describes God as existing completely outside the universe. Pantheism denies God’s transcendence. God is immanent in His universe. Deism denies God’s immanence. In primitive terms, immanence means His closeness to us, and transcendence His distance from us. 27 John 14:15, 21, 23; 15: 10.  On these matters, cf. C�0�s�|K��Tuhv��nL?�j"���4vq��G�����Fb1MD+��6����F/ڼ�:[�їN^x��)��:P'aM"m���u�/)bDk!�2K��j�-�Qb�����:�ڬ��n�j�V��hQETz&��0&on��2��ۙ���b]U�"�mB�ɖ�M2 ���b½�x�*c�A�|�u�?���-��6����U���-b(*-��#�mq����&Μ�uu����?�. God as “other”, and God as “near” are two key elements of Biblical doctrine. 140f.  In a footnote, McPherson notes a similar view in Martin Buber’s I and Thou. The immanence of God is articulated in passages like Acts 17:28, “In [God] we live and move and have our being.” Both ways of seeing God are valid, and theologians often go to great lengths to ensure that we don’t confuse the creation with the Creator. At the same time, Barth does insist that the words of revelation have an importance: Thus God reveals Himself in propositions by means of language, and human language at that, to the effect that from time to time such and such a word, spoken by the prophets and apostles and proclaimed in the Church, becomes His Word.  Thus the personality of the Word of God is not to be played off against its verbal character and spirituality…. Brian Chilton and Curtis Evelo discuss the transcendence and immanence of God. Pantheism is ridiculous—claiming and teaching that all things are God. 5:7. As we might suspect, Flew thinks that much language about God makes “no difference.”  Believers say that “God is love” even though the world is full of cruelty and hatred.  How does such a God differ from a devil, or from no God at all?  And if “God is love” makes no difference, how can it be a fact? And transcendence and immanence of god that all things are God to grasp affirms both, especially as see... 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