Luther on the hidden God

Following are some quotes from “Luther on the Hidden God” by Steven D. Paulson. Basically its apophatism, protestant-style.

“God hides so as not to be found where people seek him, and reveals himself where he is not sought”

“Adam and Eve were deluded by the serpent into thinking God was jealously hiding something of his own outside the garden, and as an ironic consequence they had to hide themselves from God in the garden. That is, they sought God not where God wanted to be found, where his word promised his blessing, but where God’s word of promise was not. They sought God outside his words.”

“God hides in order not to be found where humans want to find God. But God also hides in order to be found where God wills to be found.”

“God hides beyond every speculation in order not to be found outside the preached word who is Jesus Christ incarnate.”

“God both reveals and hides in the cross of Christ.”

“God outside Christ, outside the word, is an impenetrable power who holds our lives in his hands and is hiding his will from us. He does not want to be found outside Christ. He wants to be found in Christ, but must “hide” a second time in order to fly below our radar which is set for what we take to be “spiritual” things above. He comes where we did not expect him, under the sign of his opposite, in suffering, death, opposition to the law, ungodliness, and shame.”

“How is it that some “see” this hidden God and others do not? This requires what J. Louis Martyn once called bifocal vision, i.e., seeing through two lenses, old and new, at the same time in order to understand how God could be revealed and concealed in the same historical act; how Christ could be fully human and divine; how the cross is also the way of victory over death, etc.”

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