Marilynne Robinson offers good theological questions through Rev. Ames in Gilead. On page 179, Ames is musing about the nature of God and existence and comes against a wall. To “prove” this is like trying to build a ladder to the moon. “It seems that it should be possible, until you stop to consider the nature of the problem.”

“Don’t look for proofs,” he concludes. “Don’t bother with them at all. They are never sufficient to the question, and they’re always a little impertinent… because they claim for God a place within our conceptual grasp.”

Samuel Coleridge said, “Christianity is a life, not a doctrine.” And yet, before that loaded word is easily dismissed, I wonder what ways doctrines (understandings of a particular faith tradition) are helpful or limited?

In what ways does Jesus both give us concept and context for knowing God and in what ways does Jesus deepen the mystery of knowing God?

I think Jesus does both. What do you think?

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