Re: Nicene Creed

From: George Murphy (
Date: Wed Jun 18 2003 - 20:43:20 EDT

  • Next message: Robert Schneider: "Re: Verses relating to inerrancy" wrote:

    > These are from the Tome of Damascus - principal canons of the Catholic Church:
    > Canon 289 - “If anyone denies that the Son of God is true God, just as the
    > Father is true God, having all power, knowing all things and equal to the
    > Father: he is a heretic.”
    > Canon 290 - “If anyone says that He [The Son] made flesh was not in heaven
    > with the father while He was on earth: he is a heretic.”
    > If the Spirit proceeded from the Father to the Son and then from the Son to
    > us, at some point the Son was without the Spirit. Canons 289 and 290 say that
    > is heresy. You must believe that Jesus is God from the get go.
    > Now, I am just musing, but if the Spirit proceeded from the Father to the Son
    > and then to us, that means Jesus was not born divine, and a gnostic
    > interpretation of the gospels could be entertained, much like the enlightenment or
    > sartori of the Eastern religions, a discipline first realized by a human Jesus who
    > became divine as a result of human effort and the inspiration of the Holy
    > Spirit (who proceeded from the Father), and taught the discipline to his
    > followers, the way the Buddha did in the East. But if the Spirit proceeds from the
    > Father and Son simultaneously, then Jesus was born divine, is God first and
    > always and Canons 289 and 290 are satisfied.
    > Catholicism has been fighting gnosticism a long time. gnostics don't need a
    > church. They are with God NOW. The same religious experience Judaism conjured
    > up in the hasidic renewal, the 'devekut' or communion with God. Gnostics would
    > be unwilling to support centralized authority, because their Temple is ONLY in
    > the heart...............................

            The temporal mission of the Spirit in the world must be distinguished (at least
    logically) from the eternal procession of the Spirit "within" the Trinity. It's clear
    from a number of NT passages that Jesus carries out his ministry "in the power of
    the Spirit" and - with the Father - sends the Spirit into the world. The filioque has
    to do with the eternal procession of the Spirit - the immanent as distinguished from the
    economic Trinity.
            If the immanent Trinity is simply to be identified with the economic Trinity, as
    many modern trinitarian theologians would argue ("Rahner's rule"), then the double
    procession of the Spirit would seem to be necessary. But the "if" isn't obvious.


    George L. Murphy

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