The Immanence of God
George H. Morrison
In the Christian view of God there are two attributes which it is not easy for the human reason to combine. One of them we call the transcendence of God; to the other we give the name of immanence.
Now what do we mean by the divine transcendence? We mean that God is over all, blessed forever. We mean that apart from and above the universe, there lives and reigns a personal Creator. We mean that were this world to be extinguished and were every living being to disappear, still would there be, eternal in the heavens, the Spirit whom we designate as God. Over against all created things, sustaining them and yet distinct from them, self-conscious in the silence of eternity, and looking from without on all things made-it is to such a God, exalted over all, that we apply the attribute transcendence.
And what do we mean by the immanence of God? We mean the presence of the Almighty in creation. We mean that time and space and all their thousand occupants are but the garments that we see Him by. Deep through the universe runs the thrill of life, and wheresoever that life is, there is God. His personal habits are the laws of nature; His love of beauty is seen in every valley. It is He who awakes in the waking of the spring; it is He who moves in the torrent and the tide; it is He who rises to the joy of consciousness in the consciousness of His highest creature man. A God transcendent, like some consummate painter, adorns with His brush the lilies of the field; but a God who is immanent breathes into the lilies, and they become the expression of Himself. A God transcendent, like some master-craftsman, fashions the fowls of the air for flight; but a God who is immanent lives in every bird and breaks the eternal silence in their song. A God transcendent, like some mighty sculptor, models with His deft hand the human form; but a God who is immanent looks through human eyes and thinks in the thinking of the human brai ...
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