Sunday, August 22, 2021

An old question for Western Christians, will Anglicans answer unitedly?

I acknowledge that Aotearoa New Zealand is currently in Lockdown Level 4 (since last Tuesday midnight, until at least this coming Tuesday midnight). There might be more important/relevant things to say than what I say below. However that might take a day or two more to reveal exactly what they are, apart from, of course, and in uniform with all authorities and sensible people, encouraging compliance with government instructions, booking for vaccinations (my first is this Tuesday), and getting tested if there is reason to do so.

Recently on Facebook an Auckland colleague, Ivica Gregurec, posed a question about Anglican support for removing or retaining the filioque clause in the Nicene Creed. I had a brief exchange with him there and then, but this post, although prompted by his, is my responsibility and any comments you make in response should be to my words - engage with Ivica's words where he posted! So:

Back in the day, the original Nicene Creed of the undivided church held that the Holy Spirit proceeded from the Father (fullstop). A bit later, the Third Council of Toledo in 589 added "and from the Son" (i.e. the filioque) to the Nicene Creed but it never took on in the East. When East and West split in 1054 one of the issues was the filioque and to this day the difference remains (except where, in some places in the West, the filioque has been dropped (including, so I understand, by individual congregations).

The Book of Common Prayer remained thoroughly Western on this matter, as does our A New Zealand Prayer Book (1989, 2020) - in keeping, as far as I know with nearly all, if not all other Anglican provinces of the Anglican Communion. For what it is worth, I think the filioque is theologically justified and have no particular motivation to omit it from the Nicene Creed.

Nevertheless there are a few questions to explore here, not least on the blog of someone otherwise inclined to promote church unity.

1. Who among Anglican individuals, parishes, dioceses or provinces tacitly or formally approves (and practises) omission of the filioque?

2. Is dropping the filioque something Anglicans should do in order to be unified with Eastern Orthodox?

3. If we did so drop the clause, would we fall out of that ecumenical favour we currently have with Rome?

4. (2 and 3 perhaps coule be combined to) Should Anglicans only drop the filioque if the Roman Catholic church does so, as part of a combined Western drive toward reunification with the East? (Ditto ... Lutherans ... Reformed ... etc).

5. (The wording of this questioned is biased towards a concern I have!!): Should Anglican provinces only drop the filioque when all provinces are agreed to do so, that is, drop the filioque only when the Communion as a whole does so?

6. (Making a different point) Why should the Western Christendom "we" drop the filioque? Isn't the filioque true and we should ask the Eastern Orthodox to join us in saying it as their contribution to unity?

7. Whether or not the Westerners added to the original creed and whether or not the Easterners are ecumenically cheesed off with the West, isn't the trump card against the filioque that it is a novelty added to the pristine, primitive Nicene Creed?


Father Ron said...

Dear Bishop, I am thinking of the saying of Jesu to his disciples: "When the Spirit comes..." He also said that he had to return to the Father "or the Spirit will not come to you". These, for me, indicate that ther Spirit, for Christians, comes from the Father via the ascended, glorified Christ. Does this make sense?

Alan T Perry said...

You will be aware that the Lambeth Conference in 1978 requested the Provinces to consider dropping the filioque (Resolution 35), and that the Episcopal Church expressed its intention to do so in 1985 (Resolution A050) and the Anglican Oriental Orthodox International Commission agreed to do so in 2015.

The Book of Alternative Services of the Anglican Church of Canada (1985) omits the filioque. As far as I know, Common Worship also provides an optional Nicene creed without the filioque. There may be others.

Unknown said...

Hi Peter

I have not said filioque since 1977.

In TEC, it remains in the current BCP, but a General Convention resolution makes it optional. ACNA's synod considered dropping it entirely, but after studying the matter, retained it.

For most Western opponents of the filioque that I have known, the heart of the matter is ecclesiological. If the gospel is true, then there must somewhere have been an undeniable Body on earth in which we are saved. If there was such a Body, then its universal councils have virtually apostolic authority with respect to the doctrine of God. The Council of Constantinople not only promulgated the creed but anathematised any who revise it.

Most who are unpersuaded by this argument hang up at the gospel step-- their salvation-theory is entirely individual-- and at a vague anxiety that acknowledging that ecumenical councils have organic rather than conventional authority undermines the credibility of their modern denominations. To those like myself who stick to the ecumenical creed, these are not bugs but features.

On the propositional substance, the filioque undercuts recognition of the Holy Spirit's proper work. But those with an entirely individualistic gospel and a comfortably institutional theory of the church do not mind this, and may rather like it.

Conversations about that apathy are rather existential on both sides. People evaluate all kinds of things looking through these binoculars of individual or cosmic redemption and conventional or organic authority. For example, it is not unusual in Orthodox lands to hear Western dithering on climate change blamed on the individualistic greed and alienation from the creation fostered by the filioque.

Anglican debates about the filioque usually evade all this framing it as an ecumenical problem. Which then begs the questions whether one's gospel really needs church unity and what institutional procedure should be used to decide ecumenical questions...

In Fulcrum long ago, I suggested reframing the debate about the filioque as more directly a conversation between Christians with modern roots (eg Anglicans, Catholics) and Christians with pre-modern ones (Orthodox, non-Westerners) on how they now live into post-modernity. That wider and possibly informal ecumenical conversation would contextualize and supersede the blind collision of GAFCON and the Communion.



Peter Carrell said...

Dear Ron, Alan and Bowman

Thank you for comments which illuminate and inform (I am woefully ignorant on Lambeth resolutions and North American Anglican/Episcopalian resolutions and practices.

Bowman: there may be a "dark" individualistic side to the Filioque; but I have also read that there is a downside to creedal life without the Filioque: it engenders a monarchialism which is reflected both in the "patriarchal" leadership of Eastern Orthodoxy, and in the devotion of Eastern Christians to Tsars and dictators, cf. the current fondness of Russian Orthodoxy for Putin!

Unknown said...

Yes, Peter. Dropping the filioque in the West would not reverse climate change, and adding the filioque in the East would not free Russians from corrupting oligarchs. The history is important but not magic.


TrevDev said...

Yes. I agree with your "monarchical ism" ​fear. I am convinced that the filioque is biblically correct, and the greater reach of freedom in the West vs the easier grip oppressors have in the East is because of the outworking in society of two radically different views of God.

The result of giving up the filioque for the pragmatic reason of unity will be to unify under some common oppressive regime or other.

Trevor Morrison

Unknown said...

Postscript 1

Obviously, if you truly believe in YHWH, then you take him as he revealed himself to be. His sheer transcendent given-ness is essential to his mysterious Identity.

Conversely, if you think about the sort of god you would like best and decide to believe in that one, then you are a monotheist perhaps, but a pagan one. The Lord believes in you, but if you can't accept him as he is however he is, then you do not quite believe in him.

Now there are righteous pagans pushing *motivated reasoning* on both sides of the Western question of the filioque. Since about 1054, when each half of Christendom was narcissistically wounded by the resolute No of the other, it's been a tribal thing.

As Bryden would say, if he were still around, the ideas in contention are properly basic. Few believers can wrap their minds around both perspectives on ideas that Bryden would call *properly basic*. And only those few can and do know what we are talking about.

The rest? They assume their tribal answer in the way they frame the matter. They beg the question; they are often very pleased with themselves.

Because this is such a tribal and identity-anxious moment in the West, I do not expect the lion to lay down with the lamb any time soon. But maybe we can have a different conversation in which souls of each perspective explore our common future together.


Peter Carrell said...

Dear Bowman et al
We search for the truth on this site and have no wish to advance "tribal identity" and understand that we could be doing that unintentionally. It is not my intention here!

Of course, advancing Anglican tribal identity in a general sense might be a wee bit intentional :). Guilty if charged!

Jean said...

My goodness there is far more cans of worms out there in the theological world than one would imagine.

Having had nought theological foundation in this particular topic bar what I may have unconsciously absorbed, and responding simple on the question at hand and my own comprehension I sit closely alongside Fr Ron on the query raised. That being the Holy Spirit as being from the Father and available to humankind through the Son. I don’t think I would equate ‘from’ and ‘through’ differentiating the role of the Father and the Son in respect to the Spirit.

In a short extrapolation... the scriptures say that the ‘same Spirit that rose Jesus from the dead’ lives in us. And while the crowd challenged Jesus to ‘save himself’ he chose instead to obey the Father even unto death.... I would have a hard time conceiving of this Spirit therefore as being from the Son in so much as my human comprehension of someone raising themselves from the dead is hard to conceive. However, as the Jesus on earth received the Spirit at Baptism and after bearing our sins being made alive, born again, through the Spirit, it seems to me that we inherit the Holy Spirit through vicariously being included in this act, by belief in Jesus who He was and what He did.

In many ways I can see what it’s ended up a little bit muddled. I mean the Holy Spirit could be perceived as ‘proceeding from the Son’ because it is said of Jesus that He would Baptise with the Holy Spirit ... and that if anyone drinks of the water He gives...etc Is coming/originating from and granting/proceeding from from the same? Does this fit with the Trinity both as One but three parts of a whole, even as the Holy Spirit has a purpose interconnected with yet different from both the Father and the Son?

Nevertheless, it is difficult for me to absorb such discussions being associated with oppressive Oligarchs, patriarchy and individualistic greed, notwithstanding the split of a church communion. Plus I do confess, I must have said this filioque since I was knee high to a grasshopper and it’s significance has up to this point in time escaped me completely. I do surmise, I am probably not the only one.

Unknown said...

" is difficult for me to absorb such discussions being associated with oppressive oligarchs, patriarchy, and individual greed..."

Good for you, Jean. They are demonstrably not so associated on the ground.

Since this OP is not about That Topic or the Other Topic, I mentioned an example of *motivated reasoning* to illustrate how passionate some people elsewhere have been about it.


Unknown said...

Peter, Anglicans usually have a better than merely tribal identity. That is, it is stronger than one that needs opposition to some other tribe (eg the RCC) to make sense.

Anglicans, from those I like best to those I like least, are more consistent with their most fundamental commitments when they recognise the equality and proper work of the Holy Spirit and at least some organic authority in the seven ecumenical councils. Anyone getting that far will likely use the conciliar version of the creed.


Jonathan said...

Is this a question that consequentially threatens our understanding of the Trinity, the church, or mission/stewardship of the earth? About the Trinity as One or the Trinity as Three or the Trinity as One yet with differing roles in differing instances? Rather, might there be a healthy circularity in it all into which we are caught? Within the Father's sending is the Son's asking; within the Son is the Spirit; within the Spirit is God the Father...
 “If you love me, keep my commands. 
 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—  the Spirit of truth. 
The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him.
But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.  
I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.  
Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. 
Because I live, you also will live. 
On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.  
Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”
Are we at the point where language is struggling to describe God Themself?
I can see gain if the clause is dropped for the sake of unity unless we thereby are getting into an argument about subordinationism or an overly rigid idea of which Person does what.

Jean said...

After reading Wikipedia regarding the filioque, and revising my first thoughts, it does seem that it is almost impossible to separate the Father, Son & Spirit; when it comes to any scriptural reference there appears another scripture attributing the same to another member of the Trinity. So.... I concur with you Jonathon, but how about a step further, apparently according to Wikipedia (apologies for the source if there be more accurate sources out there and it can be fact tested by those with more learning in Church History) the very first council used the words “I believe in the Holy Spirit....” without additional reference as to source or coming/proceeding from, surely this statement of belief could be ascribed too by the Church as one?

Anonymous said...

Dr Carrell,
"Paris vaut bien une messe", but do you really think for the price of a filioque the Orthodox Churches will enter into communion and mutual recognition of Anglican churches which have women priests, women bishops and even, in North America, women bishops in same-sex relationships? Just as the Swedish Lutheran Church has a partnered lesbian Archbishop, and the Canadian Anglican Church has a bishop in a same-sex marriage. I believe they are also bringing up children.
Do you think the Orthodox Churches will endorse same-sex parenting as the Episcopal Church has, with its prominent laymen Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and his husband Chasten?
I think you may find that the Orthodox Churches look a bit more globally at theology and ethics than many western Progressives realize.


Unknown said...

I'm intrigued and pleased that ADU's best commentators are giving a little attention to this deep but slippery question.

Enjoy reading the scriptures! The fathers at the Council of Constantinople (381) also did this, generally in their native Greek. Three influential (and otherwise fascinating) ones came from Cappadocia (in modern Turkey midway between Istanbul and Ankara): SS Basil of Caesarea, Gregory of Nyssa, and Gregory of Nazianzus. The local Council of Toledo did not have a Cappadocian understanding of the Trinity.

Kindly note that the plausibility of the filioque, if you find that, is not in itself a defense of its interpolation into an ecumenical creed guarded by an anathema against interpolations. To set aside an anathema of the undivided Church, one has to have a very compelling reason.

In the middle ages, Rome reasoned that the pope can do it because in matters of faith and morals the pope can do anything. We don't believe that, nor have recent popes. What's our excuse?

The problem with the excuses built so far is that they assume theories of the Body that do not comport with the witness of the apostles. Meanwhile, there is intrinsic plausibility to the notion that the apostles founded churches and those churches, in the face of resurgent Arianism, defined their belief in the Holy Spirit at Constantinople. The simpler, more organic view is very hard to excel.

And while everyone cites scripture, not everyone agrees that the scriptures have flat authority over against the creedal tradition. What we know as the Apostle's Creed is quite old, and is mentioned in our sources as inspired.

We like elephants here at ADU-- there is at least one for every room-- and the one in this room is: the gospel requires a perduring Body merely to be intelligible, yet no matter how conservative we think we are, what we in the West know and practice as Christianity is at points bizarre when seen from points of view near the apostles. On this topic, That Topic, and the Other Topic, Christians are divided by their courage (or not) in facing that strangeness and its implications, and in their varied ways of living into the future with it.


Jonathan said...

If I follow you correctly Bowman, the third council had the authority to issue an anathema which, presumably all other streams of Christianity have remained "under" since, because they were issuing an inerrant (?) consensus of a Council which was the successor to the Twelve Apostles. Are you saying that our understanding of Scripture needs to be through the lens of the version of the Creed that doesn't contain the filioque or that filioque may well be Scriptural, but that due process was not observed when the West put it in their version of the creed and the anathema relates to disrespect of due process? ? The Council of Acts 15 issued a statement that needs a mix of adherence and reinterpretation for today; I would be surprised if any subsequent Council could do better. Still, I think it is worth persuing "top down" approaches to the visible unity of the Body while all of us have to get on with "bottom up" approaches of loving neighbours and enemies. Frankly, I find it very difficult to pray for the Taliban or the North Korean Government... TJ, I think you are right - perhaps the branches of varying denominations which prohibit women from marrying women or becoming Bishops or priests may share more in common with the Orthodox for a long time to come. But the same questions on the discipleship implications of one's biological sex are being asked there - as I am sure they are even by many in conservative denomonations / branches of denominations. (My copy of "For I Am Wonderfully Made: Texts on Eastern Orthodoxy and LGBT Inclusion" is here awaiting its turn in my reading pile.) And thanks Jean for the tip-off - the Wikipedia article was very interesting!

Father Ron said...

'Tis a gift to be simple, 'tis a gift to be free, 'tis a gift to be down where we ought to be. And when we find ourselves in a place just right, we'll be in the valley of Love and Delight!(Some times I envy the 'Shakers" their simple faith).

Jesus: - "I would that you werre as little children" and "Unless you become as little children...."

I sometimes wonder how much psychic energy is wasted in the theological sphere by academic theolgians worrying about things that may not really be of cosmic importance for the salvation of ALL humankind. That "God is Three and God is One" is quite tough enough for most Christians to understand, surely. "The great love of God as revealed in the Son (by the agency of the Holy Spirit) is quite enough to occupy our forensic philosophical preoccupation, without worrying about a 'process' that God alone is privy to.

Matters like the spread of Covid; a proper vaccination understanding; the plight of women in Afghanistan; and the question of world hunger are surely more important at this time?

Unknown said...

Jonathan, if I understand your quibble correctly, the Church as a whole has never had and never articulated a common and true understanding of God. Full stop.

For any collective statement on God at all would be eviscerated by that quibble. That is, the quibble is as cool to the Toledo creed imposed on the West by a pope long ago as to the original creed of the whole, undivided Church at Constantinople.

Or have I misunderstood your comment?

To my mind, the Way supposes that (a) Jesus replaced the Land with his Body, and (b) revealed YHWH to it so that (c) it could speak truthfully about life in him. The quibble denies all three suppositions.

A disciple on that Way has this practical problem with those denials: contemplation of YHWH *enables* the *metanoia* by which we are saved (justified, sanctified, called). Salvation is an organic outgrowth of a particular self-revelation of the One who called Abraham.

Different god-concepts entail different contemplations inspiring different practices for different "salvations". Waiting for the Hidden Imam or doing the Ghost Dance or sitting zazen will not draw one through the Son into the life of the Trinity.

(The modern churchmanship that is fading from the West fostered a certain insouciance about what most excited Jesus's disciples: not a better social policy for the empire-- did they have one?-- but a personally transformative God. And this is why sensible people today who have always assumed that they are earnest churchfolk are honestly startled to hear that *sin management* is not all there is, that it matters what happens in their hearts when they contemplate the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Conversely, those postmoderns who like full-strength religion are at least intrigued to find disciples on the Way who "do God" without dissembling or embarrassment.)

So I do not think that the fathers of Constantinople were speaking in institutional jargon when they attached an anathema to the universally approved creed. To their collective mind, they were acknowledging the spiritual reality to which the anonymous author of the later Quicunque Vult referred in saying, "Whosoever would be saved must before all else believe the catholic faith... and the catholic faith is THIS..."

God willing, Father Ron, + Peter will have another OP next Monday. Maybe you will like that one. I hope that you do. Meanwhile, it is still Wednesday. I like this one :-)


Unknown said...

"Are you saying..."

Another morning, Jonathan, another reading. The second time, your question made excellent sense in light of our past conversations here at ADU.

Several times in years past, Bryden Black and I affirmed the creed and episcopate as the organic hermeneutic of the canon. (The Holy Spirit gave us all three at the same time. Why would we expect them to work separately?) So it makes sense to ask which creed-- Toledo (filioque) or Constantinople?-- best guides an organic interpretation of scripture.

Three common answers of several.

(1) Following the principle above, the creed accepted by the whole church and rejected by none of it-- the one from Constantinople-- is more proper to the reading of the Bible as scripture to the whole Body. The attached anathema effectively says: do not fork this *paradosis*. But that follows anyway from the unity of the episcopate through space and time.

(2) The creed that recognises the proper work of the Holy Spirit-- eg in recognising spiritual truth revealed by God-- is more fit to the purpose of reading the Bible as scripture. The Cappadocian understanding of the Trinity-- the one behind the ecumenical creed from Constantinople-- clearly does this. The local creed from Toledo combats an Arian notion that Jesus as a creature could not *send* the divine Holy Spirit, but in practice it has led the West to attribute the Holy Spirit's work to the Son. Downstream, our understanding of and activity in that work has been impaired thereby.

(3) The creed that gets the eternal *proceedings* of the Persons right is less misleading about God than one that muddles eternity and time by talking about a *sending*.


Unknown said...

"The past is a foreign country..."

What is most foreign to moderns is the notion that the Trinity was central from the beginning to the apostolic and patristic experience of YHWH, the ancestral god of Israel. We were often taught that this was a leap taken centuries later by the ecumenical councils.

Three readings make it easier to cross the threshold into that horizon.

Daniel Boyarin, The Jewish Gospels.

Boyarin is a brilliant and provocative talmudist who situates the movement around Jesus in the religious imagination of Second Temple Judaism. If his accessible Jewish Gospels intrigues you, go on to its sequel on Jews and Christians pulling apart in late antiquity, Partition.

David S. Yeago, The New Testament and Nicene Dogma.

The latter two are easy but meaty articles.


Jonathan said...

Thanks Bowman for those responses - “the creed accepted by the whole church and rejected by none of it-- the one from Constantinople-- is more proper to the reading of the Bible as scripture to the whole Body” makes sense. I hope to delve more into the 7 councils whose authoratative pronouncements I should perhaps familiarise myself with! I have more difficulty if the Nicean Council or Athanasian creed is claiming the ability to inerrantly anathematise (much less with what seems to be the incorporation of this idea in the Athanasian creed itself). Anathematisations from Athanasian and Nicean directions could be interpreted as being directed against one another on the filioque; I have a distrust of authoritative pronouncements about “who's out” and the implications of that in the ancient and modern world and don't think anyone's salvation hangs on which Nicene version one uses. Yet I agree this creates a tension (contradiction?) that for now I will endeavour to hold rather than discard: if I can quibble over this then could I not quibble over Jesus' divinity? Some of your points (“To my mind, the Way supposes that (a) Jesus replaced the Land with his Body, and (b) revealed YHWH to it so that (c) it could speak truthfully about life in him,” and “If the gospel is true, then there must somewhere have been an undeniable Body on earth in which we are saved. If there was such a Body, then its universal councils have virtually apostolic authority with respect to the doctrine of God...”) will occupy my mind well after this thread has come to an end even when I understand what you are saying a bit more clearly! Thanks for those references - I look forward to delving. :-)

Unknown said...

Have fun, Jonathan!

A brief reply on anathemas.

The Seven Ecumenical Councils used that language to freeze texts as final, forbid forking that undermined unity, flag non-negotiable essentials, and point to the cost of non-participation in the Body.

Anglicans often have one, two, or three anxieties about this language.

(1) If one's understanding of salvation is hyper-individualist, then one disbelieves in the participation in the Body that anathemas safeguard. So then, not seeing the point of them, one finds them presumptuous, cruel, and vaguely embarrassing.

(2) Some with a (post)modern universalism resist the thought that the Body in time has any kind of boundary. Gawd luvs ever'body so ever'body is a member. If they hear anathema language as patrolling a perimeter rather than guarding a centre, they hate it.

(3) If one's ecclesiology is merely institutional, then one may think of anathemas as a tool in the box of governance rather than as a truth-claim liable to falsehood, and as fit for any coercive purpose that an archbishop or synod might have rather than as proper to the Body's collective knowledge of the Trinity. In that perspective, the language is a dangerous precedent for order that is coercive rather than organic (eg TEC v ACNA).

Behind each of these anxieties lurks a perennial problem, but those must wait for some future OP.


Unknown said...

Jonathan, an inquiring Anglican's best guide to the Seven Ecumenical Councils is John Meyendorff's Byzantine Theology, still in print and free online.

In Meyendorff, you will either read or notice that the Orthodox are not institutionalists. So they do not agree, for example, that an eighth ecumenical council is even hypothetically possible.

When the PoC recently convened the first council of (nearly) all Orthodox bishops in twelve centuries, the participants made it clear that their authority, although ample, was not analogous to that of the series 325-781.

This bears mentioning because institutionalists, papal and Anglican, assume otherwise. Whatever Constantinople has ever done, Rome-- or New York-- can do now. And from the Council of Florence to the present day, Western ecumenical fantasies never expect their St Mark of Ephesus.

Having a stronger doctrine of the Holy Spirit, Orthodox have a correspondingly higher receptiveness to Spirit-given *paradosis* (tradition), and that has consequences for say the nature of canon law, the authority behind the Byzantine ordo, the credibility of local councils, and of course, the proper place of the papacy in a truly ecumenical order.


Peter Carrell said...

Well, that is a lot to take in but I am grateful for comments above because I personally have a better understanding of God, Holy Spirit, the creeds (Nicene/Toledo) and the church/body!

Unknown said...

"It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing."

Ella Fitzgerald

In comments like his 12:56, I hear Father Ron preferring an intuitive feel for God to a merely cognitive one. In practice, we should have both, but his preference has roots in the OT scriptures thar pointed forward to the sort of Jews who followed Jesus. Think of Joel's prophecy that "your sons will dream dreams and your daughters will prophesy" and then read a few pages in St Paul.

So how do creeds help that? They nurture that intuition in the many who are not by temperament mystics. And for those who are, they supply a language for the Ineffable. Either way, they enable us to be the community of spirit that we intuit.

There are churches that have tried creedlessness. On the ground, they are not friendly to the intuitive love of God.

There is a counterfeit of this: the use of doctrine to intimidate people from having or trusting any intuitions about God at all. That, I think, is what Father Ron grumbles about. And rightly so.


Father Ron said...

Well, Folks; here's my version of the definitive credal statement about our Triune God, as sung to the chorus in Beethoven's immortal Choral Symphony: * (try singing it to yourselves)

I believe in God the Father; I believe in God the Son;
Bonded by the Holy Spirit, God is Three and God is One!
Consubstantial, Coeternal - is the truth we ponder on -
God on earth and God in heaven: Praise the Great Trisagion
(apologies to LVB)

(Repeat this exercise 30 times and you will be pretty sure about God's identity).

Father Ron said...

I just discovered this most interesting article from 'Thinking Anglicans' website. on thinking about the 'certainty of faith' (?):

Giles Fraser UnHerd Does Jordan Peterson believe in God?
“The professor isn’t being shifty when he refuses to declare his faith”

Unknown said...

Jonathan, if you have Scribd, you are saving a lot of money.

And you can read this, which resonates with the articles above--