Novak (novak) wrote,

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Theology Notebook: Comedy with Kari-Shane; Von Balthasar on the Logos and History

Spent the day reading over at the Brew Bayou, since the semester's playing out in such a way that I really need to use my break to keep up with the seminars and the projects. Took time off last night to have dinner and lots of talk with Kari-Shane and to go see the premiere of Starsky and Hutch, which was cheerfully goofy. Always good to see a comedy with a big crowd: more laughing out loud that way....

Anyway, I read this passage in Von Balthasar's A Theology of History (p. 24) that I thought plugged in marvelously to all the talk about Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ that's been going on. Von B is talking about Jesus as the Logos, or "the Word," which is an ancient concept: the Word is the "logic," the rational principle and order that underlies all reality. This is the aspect of God that Christians talk about having become human in Jesus, coming from the beginning of the Gospel of John with, "In the beginning was the Word ... and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us."

Anyway, Von Balthasar writes:

"In Jesus Christ, the Logos is no longer the realm of ideas, values and laws which governs and gives meaning to history, but is himself history. In the life of Christ the factual and the normative coincide not only in fact but necessarily, because the fact is both the manifestation of God and the divine-human pattern of true humanity in God's eyes. The facts are not only a phenomenal analogy for a doctrine lying behind them and abstractable from them (as Alexandrian theology held to a certain extent); they are, grasped in their depth and totality, the meaning itself. The historical life of the Logos--to which his death, Resurrection and Ascension belong--is, as such, that very world of ideas which, directly or reductively, gives the norm for all history; yet not as coming forth from some non-historical height above, but from the living center of history itself. Seen from the highest, definitive point of view, it is the source of history, the point whence the whole of history before and after Christ emanates: its center."
Tags: christology, friends-marquette era, historical, historiography, incarnation, jesus, movies/film/tv, resurrection, theological notebook, trinity, von balthasar

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