“In one sense all theologies are heresies.” – Tony Campolo
Any time we begin to talk about God, no matter who it is or how it is being said (from a pulpit or on a front porch), we must realize that we are not speaking about a reality that any one of us has truly known or seen. I know people will say that you can see God’s action in the world or that we need something sovereign beyond us, therefore God is there. I am not talking about that. I believe God is out there, in me (though I seem to miss Him), and in the world. Simply I am just talking about the language and the metaphors we attribute to God when we talk about Him. Even when I use the masculine “He” that does not incapsulate who God is or begin to explain Him at all. C.S. Lewis in a poem-prayer says this,
“He whom I bow to only knows to whom I bow
When I attempt the ineffable Name, murmering Thou…”
He proceeds to acknowledge that when he says the Name of God, his best thoughts are mere fancies and symbols, which he knows “cannot be the thing thou art.” I can know God in relationship, begin to know more about Him, and be in awe of the things He has done and what He is doing now, but I cannot hope to explain Him and believe I have got it all right. Erwin Raphael McManus says that we will spend the rest of eternity trying to figure out who God is. He will always be a mystery. For some reason, that is one of the most comforting ideas I have ever heard.