Tuesday, May 30, 2006

'My Theology': I believe, therefore I speak

I believe, therefore I speak. Not of me and of my faith - or at any rate of me and my faith only in so far as it is pertinent. I believe, therefore I speak of the God in whom I believe and of his liberating truth. I believe, therefore I speak of the God who has come to the world as a human being and who has for our salvation revealed himself as God in the person of Jesus Christ. I believe, therefore I speak of Jesus Christ as the truth of God that liberates. ...

Accordingly, faith cannot be satisfied with any truth that does not liberate. It certainly knows that there are 'truths' which stand in the way of freedom; it also knows that there are 'freedoms' that do violence to truth. But faith is fundamentally distinguished from truths of knowledge and freedoms of action, even when the truth of knowledge and freedom of action walk hand in hand, or at least seek one another and in seeking, approach one another. For faith does not seek. It finds. Faith lives from a discovered love whose liberating truth it then naturally seeks to understand and continually to understand even better. As a lucky finder is made lucky by the find which he or she makes, so faith becomes faith by the love which God is himself. Part of the essence of the love which God himself is is that it allows itself to be found. Love is itself the primary subject of its discovery, as the flames of the love of God leap across to a human subject as flames of the Spirit of God, evoking faith as the discovery of God. God comes to people in the Holy Spirit in such a way that they come to believe. In finding God, faith then also finds itself. In discovering God, one discovers oneself as a believer. In believing the human person has an incomparably new experience, one which fundamentally ruptures the series of worldly experiences, yet which is related to them, an experience of God which as such is an experience with experience, and which under no circumstances wants to be concealed. I believe therefore I speak.

—Eberhard Jüngel, Theological Essays II, 4-5