Monday, April 20, 2009

The Holy Spirit in the World

I recently finished the book entitled, "The Holy Spirit in the World," in which Kirsteen Kim sets forth a compelling assessment of a few different pneumatologies present within Western theological construction, Greek Orthodoxy, India, and Korea; all of which are used to complement each other in some fashion. She addresses the question of "mission" or missio dei, i.e., how is God at work in the world? We live among a plurality of faith preferences which presently color the earth with social and contextual differences that, unfortunately, have been silenced and kept out of the global theological conversation, furthermore, labeled "demonic." Not until recently has the term "reconciliation" risen to the surface of local Xn theologies, but now the recognition of the Pauline introduction of katallaso (reconcile) and katallage (reconciliation) has started to create waves in the pool of private and exclusive ideologies.

If we are to have a balanced Trinitarian theology, we must continue to affirm the Spirit as an individual within the hypostatic union of the Trinity and also capable of acting on its own behalf contra creation's demand. The Spirit doesn't hear ABRACADABRA and 'poof' onto the scene in Acts 2. Rather, the Spirit participated in creation and must be given credit. The Holy Spirit is the ‘divine power’ that is the cohesive force perpetuating the creation act and maintaining its dependence and sustainability (Gen 2:7; Job 33:4; Psalm 104:30). We must travel the Scriptures from beginning to end while looking for not only explicit evidence of the action's of the Spirit, but we must also acknowledge the active presence of God as the source of all.

"...A biblical theology of the Holy Spirit involves more than a study of the passages in which "the spirit" is explicitly mentioned. The theology of the Holy Spirit is a study of God's involvement with the world. The Spirit represents the presence of God, which is throughout the whole creation (Ps 139:7), and the mighty involvement of God in earthly affairs (Isa 63:10-14; Job 26:12-13). The New Testament also bears witness to God's involvement in the world by the Holy Spirit. This involvement is focused in Jesus Christ and those who are in him, and yet it holds out hope for the whole creation, as the Spirit bears witness (Rom 8:1-27)."
-Kim, 16

"Now the earth was a formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters." Gen 1:2

1 comment:

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