Saturday, October 12, 2013

God as three mutually connected Suns

Trinitarian Theology is key, in order to understand what the Christians believe about God. The fact that Christianity believes in One God but admitting three persons in God, complicates many, who understand the Trinity as three separate gods. However, the Christian God does not relate to a polytheistic understanding of God. St. Gregory says,

“We have one God because there is a single Godhead. Though there are three objects of belief, they derive from the single whole and have reference to it. They do not have degrees of being God or degrees of priority over against one another. They are not sundered in will or divided in power. You cannot find there any of the properties inherent in things divisible. It is as if there were a single intermingling of light, which existed in three mutually connected Suns. When we look at the Godhead, the primal cause, the sole sovereignty, we have a mental picture of the single whole, certainly. But when we look at the three in whom the Godhead exists, and at those who derive their timeless and equally glorious being from the primal cause, we have three objects of worship”[1].
The suns paradigm is also expressed by St. John of Damascus, who claims that, “it is just like three suns cleaving to each other without separation and giving out light mingled and conjoined into one”[2]

[1] Gregory of Nazianzus, Oration 31, in On God and Christ, 127-128
[2] John of Damascus, Exposition of the Orthodox Faith 1.8 (NPNF 2 9:513).

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