God not other than what we find in Christ

NIKOLAI_Ge_Crucifixion“Every picture people have of God that is other than what we find in Christ on the cross is a mistaken conception of God.” (Greg Boyd)

Forgive me for hovering over Greg for a second post this week. I’ve been pondering this quote of his for days. Not surprisingly, I can’t think of any Christian (broadly defined) who would disagree with his statement, including the most classical of theists. But not all who agree with the statement find the same thing in Christ crucified. A more fundamental question might be: Just what does one find in Christ on the Cross? And granting that God cannot be other than what one finds, a more important question would be: How does one do the ‘finding’ which the Cross inevitably beckons us toward? The point, a bit discouraging if you ask me, is that there’s nothing obvious to find in the Cross even if one agrees with Greg that the Cross is the ‘X’ that marks the spot where the greatest treasure is to be found. Different Christians, all who agree with Greg’s quote, see different things and so find different treasures. I certainly find a different treasure than Greg finds.

Of course Greg doesn’t just say this much. He says a great deal, very capably and passionately, about what he specifically “finds in Christ crucified,” and it is with respect to what he finds that he makes his statement. But all this begs more fundamental questions: Is the truth of the Cross really that obvious? Does its treasure lie casually on the surface? How does one go about finding God in Christ on the Cross?

(Picture here.)

4 comments on “God not other than what we find in Christ

  1. tgbelt says:

    A couple of interesting takes on the Cry of Dereliction:

    Over at Orthodoxy & Heterodoxy (“Did the Father Abandon Christ on the Cross?

    Tom McCall’s excellent piece on the Cry.

    Fred Sanders and Matt Jenson have an interesting 4-part conversation over McCall’s book and related Christological questions.

    Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4.


  2. Tom…that’s an epistemological issues that not even orthodox Christians agree on do they? I mean if the propositional statements of orthodoxy itself cannot be agreed upon concerning their meaning can we expect anything different from the enigmatic Cross?


    • tgbelt says:

      I’m not aware of any dogmatic disagreements among the Orthodox along those lines Larry. They may disagree over things, but not over core affirmations re: the Trinity and Christology.


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