At the heart of a Trinitarian Theology of revelation is the belief that the Father has supremely revealed himself in Christ Jesus through the power of The Holy Spirit. This means that Holy Scripture is the infallible testimony inspired by the Holy Spirit to this revelation. If this statement is true then the word and spirit relationship not only affects our growth in the Christian Faith,but it also affects our view of the sacraments as the enacted Word of God. Furthermore,the whole question of Revelation also affects our Christology and our view of the relationship between the three persons of the Holy Trinity.
So often the whole of the Word and Spirit tension is reduced to saying like “if you have the Word alone you will dry up, if you have the Spirit alone you will blow up,if you have the Word and Spirit together you will grow up”, this saying is profoundly true, yet it fails to show us how to achieve this.
To grow in the way that the above saying call for is to call for a careful definition of terms, what is the Word of God? or should it be who is the Word of God? We also need to pose questions in the same way about the Holy Spirit.
The Word of God is supremely the Lord Jesus himself, in John chapter 1 he is called the Logos or Word, it is Jesus who reveals the Father to us through his life and ministry. This is not to ignore the Old Testament but rather to acknowledge that in Christ all Revelation reaches its climax. We only honour the Old testament revelation properly when we see it as part of God’s covenant of Grace with fallen humankind. When we do this and Jesus himself affirms the Divine revelation contained in the Old Testament, we will value the Old Testament highly and see that it has relevance for us today.
We also know that Jesus accomplished his whole mission through the power of the Holy Spirit,here we begin to see that in the person of Jesus there is no tension between Word and Spirit. I know we cannot draw the parallel between Scripture as the Word of God and the Spirit of God ( as the one who inspires and illumines the text) and the incarnation, but there are some interesting areas of overlap.
I want to explore more of this subject in my next blog