Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Holy Spirit

"Theologians have constantly debated about the starting point of theology: Should we start with God and move from him to man and the problems of human life? Or should we start from the other end, with man and his experience, and from there ascend to God? Indeed the two options have been set against each other as 'theology from above' vs. 'theology from below.' But if we take seriously the fact that God in his Holy Spirit dwells with us, working in us and influencing us, it should be easy to discover even in the midst of our own experiences the reality of that God who as our Lord and Master stands above us with all his authority and power. And if it is really God whom we encounter in our experiences, the 'theology from below' which begins with our needs and desire, our troubles and concerns, will suddenly turn in to a 'theology from above' because in all those things it is he who encounters us, the One who is greater than ourselves and our little world. It ought to be possible to know him as One who in our world--his creation--is strange to us, and accordingly learn to hope for the future consummation of his work."

~Eduard Schweizer, The Holy Spirit (Philadelphia, PA: Fortress Press, 1980), 8.

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