June 30, 2008

Thought for 06.30.08

Just as we Anglicans regard the Scripture as "sufficient for salvation"1 so too we regard the Nicene Creed as "the sufficient statement of the Christian Faith."2 Neither tells us everything about the world or the church, nor about God; but they tell us enough. Isn't it interesting that God, through and with the church, appears only to provide us enough daily bread to keep us hungry for the eventual enjoyment of the heavenly banquet?


1. Articles of Religion, VI
2. Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral

Tobias Haller BSG

3 comments:

Bryan Owen said...

This reminds me of a section in Luke Timothy Johnson's The Creed: What Christians Believe and Why It Matters (Doubleday, 2003). It's under the header "The Blessed Simplicity of Profession." Here's just a part of what Johnson writes:

"One of the qualities of the creed that most recommends it to contemporary Christians who find themselves confused about essentials and divided by nonessentials is its remarkable simplicity in profession. As with friends, so with beliefs: the fewer the better. The ancient philosophers well understood that in friendship there is an inverse proportion of number and quality. More is demanded of friends in trust, loyalty, and depth of commitment than can be asked from casual acquaintances. So also, faith demands selectivity. People who claim to believe many things equally cannot possibly be deeply committed to them all. They inadvertently identify themselves as superficial acquaintances of faith rather than friends with God (James 4:4)" (pp. 314-315).

And again:

"The simplicity of the creed is notable first in those matters on which it speaks. The creed consistently affirms what without trying to specify how, and thus liberates in two ways: the minds of believers are free to examine and investigate, without constraint, the gaps left within by the creed's propositions, and their minds are not imprisoned by extraneous and possibly unworthy explanations or elaborations. The creed thus provides a stable confession within which the faithful can find a variety of acceptable standpoints and interpretations" (pp. 315-316).

Tobias Haller said...

I suppose this relates to some extent to the "being / doing" dichotomy in my later post... Thanks for the citations; I am a fan of LT Johnson's work on Scripture and wasn't aware of this book on the Creed.

JCF said...

Isn't it interesting that God, through and with the church, appears only to provide us enough daily bread to keep us hungry for the eventual enjoyment of the heavenly banquet?

And---as we could have learned from the wandering Israelites---if you get greedy and demand MORE-MORE-MORE, it turns into rotten worm-chow? ;-/

"Give us this day our daily Quad, and deliver us from GAFCON's 14 pts (or whatever)"