Systematic Theology: The Triune God by Robert W. Jenson
I read a few more pages of Jenson’s first volume today. I’m still dealing with his prolegomenal remarks. He opens the chapter entitled `The Identification of God’ by saying:
It will be seen from the foregoing that an initial and determining theme of theology, and one with a systematic emphasis in the system here offered, must be the identification of God by the Resurrection of Jesus.
Jenson then spends much of the rest of the chapter noting how the apostles identified God: as he who raised Jesus from the dead, as he the God of Israel whom Jesus called Father and ultimately by the triune name, `Father, Son and Holy Spirit’, which encapsulates the gospel narrative by `recounting at once the personae and the basic plot of the Scriptural story’.
I don’t feel like saying much about it at the moment but this sort of emphasis is, in my view, an absolutely essential element of Christian theology and the Christian understanding of God. Our God is not simply a Feurbachian projection of our desires onto the screen of eternity; Our God steps into history in order that we might know him. Our God does not become known as we consider the notion of deity, of eternity of perfection but becomes known when we consider he who died the death of a criminal during the reign of Tiberius Caesar and when we consider he who raised him from the dead. Our God is not the absentee landlord of Deism but is he who animates the community of those who follow him with his very own presence.