Immanence, Transcendence and Assumed Knowledge

Today, I had the pleasure of filling in for my friend Matt Svoboda (one of the pastors at The Bridge in Spring Hill, TN) in his Theology Thursday series. Here’s an excerpt:

There was a time when if you used the term “God,” the vast majority of people would know who and what you were talking about. Generally speaking, the West was “Christian;” people had at least a passing familiarity with the Bible and the majority of the population went to some form of Christian church (it was, after all, expected of polite society). But today, things are very different. While the studies show that the majority of Americans profess to believe that there is some sort of “other power,” it cannot—and must not—be assumed that we’re talking about the same thing anymore. “God” could mean anything today—it could mean the God of the Bible, the god of Islam, the earth… it could even be you. The existence of a personal God, and specifically as described in the Bible, is no longer an assumed concept in our spiritual-but-not-religious world.

So let’s talk a bit about God in the way the Bible does for a moment as we discuss his nature.Consider the psalmist’s joyful proclamation, “O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory above the heavens”(Psa. 8:1). David gives praise to God because his name is “majestic in all the earth” and his glory is “above the heavens.” In theological terms, he is describing the transcendence and immanence of God—that is, he is both far above and beyond us and yet he is intimately involved with us.

Head over to The Bridge’s blog and read the rest.

Posted by Aaron Armstrong

Aaron is the author of several books for adults and children, as well as multiple documentaries and Bible studies. His latest book, I'm a Christian—Now What?: A Guide to Your New Life with Christ is available now.