I spend a lot of time talking with Christians. I have taught and participated in many courses in churches through the years, been in conversation with a great many seminary students, and spent hours upon hours in conversation with pastors and Christian academics. I’ve come to realize through this that, for many Christians, God is essentially a construct. God doesn’t do anything except give credence and authority to the ethical claims that we want to endorse. The Holy Spirit does no heavy lifting in this scenario. This type of religion is disconnected from the God of the Bible and Christian tradition…
I’ve heard many times, “God has no hands but our hands,” but this isn’t right. This isn’t the God of which we read in the Bible, nor is it the God who is handed on to us in tradition. God may use our hands to do something of value in this world, despite all of the ways in which we’re likely to mess things up. In our walk of discipleship, however, the question we should be asking is not simply, “What would Jesus do?” but “What is God doing?
I was thinking about his blog post on my morning walk today, trying to avoid the icy patches on the road. Our sense of what God does is connected to our sense of who God is. There are two prevailing models for God: 1) the strong, omnipotent God of classical theism who can do anything and everything, but who declines to heal someone dying of cancer for inscrutable reasons we are supposed to accept; and 2) the weak God of process theology who is dependent on the universe in some way and does little more than sit there and lure us toward something.
I am not sure what to do with either of these models. Neither is appealing anymore. I am wondering if there is another option. I am not sure what God is doing. So I walked my four miles this morning and talked to the Hidden God. I thought about that altar Paul noticed in Athens, To An Unknown God. Do we all not pray, in the end, to an unknown God?