Tuesday, August 13, 2013

"what to do when it is God who has said everything he has to say": "if everything is said, a thousand things remain to be done."

     "At bottom, what God has to say, and what he in fact says, in one sense is not a lot.  He perhaps says one thing.  But it is the thing that he alone can say.  In the Old Testament, it is his name (Exodus, 3, 14).  The New Testament explains this name by agapè, 'charity' (1 John, 4, 8).  Man has as his task, to say the rest.  And salvation is that he is made capable of doing so.
"Once God has said all that he has to say, and precisely because he has said everything, he gives the platform to man.  What obliges man to take up the task of speaking, is not the silence that would be due to a simple and total absence, or to the disinterest of a God situated too high or too far away from him.  It is the silence that comes from the fact that God has said everything he can say, to wit:  everything he is.  A silence of this quality is necessary for the human word to be truly authorized.  Not merely permitted, even less simply tolerated, but endowed with the very authority of God, who in fact gives it."

     Rémi Brague, On the God of the Christians (and on one or two others), trans. Paul Seaton (South Bend, IN:  St. Augustine's Press, 2013), 109-110.  The heading comes from p. 106, but the entirety of chap. 5 ("A God who has said everything") bears re-reading.

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