From Infinite Love to Infinite Love
Tuesday, May 9, 2017
We all want resurrection in some form. Jesus’ resurrection is a potent, focused, and compelling statement about what God is still and forever doing with the universe and with humanity. Science strongly confirms this statement today with different metaphors and symbols: condensation, evaporation, hibernation, sublimation, the four seasons, and the life cycles of everything from salmon to stars—constantly dying and being reborn in different forms. God appears to be resurrecting everything all the time and everywhere. It is not something to “believe in” as much as it is something to observe and be taught by.
I choose to believe in Jesus’ bodily resurrection because it localizes the whole Mystery in this material and earthly world and in our own bodies too, the only world we know and the world that God created and loves and in which God chose to incarnate. (Read all of 1 Corinthians 15 where Paul keeps saying this in many ways.)
We all want to know that this wonderful thing called life is going somewhere good. It is going to someplace good because it came from “original innocence” instead of “original sin.” “I know where I came from and where I am going,” Jesus says, “but you do not” (John 8:14). So he came to tell us!
The Alpha and the Omega of history have to match, or our lives have no natural arc, trajectory, or organic meaning. The end has to be in the beginning, as T. S. Eliot said in his Four Quartets. The Book of Revelation (1:8, 21:6, 22:13) states that Jesus is the Alpha of history, which Duns Scotus called “the first idea in the mind of God,” and also the “Omega Point,” which is the final allurement of history into its future, an idea taught by Teilhard de Chardin.
If the original divine incarnation was and is true, then resurrection is both inevitable and irreversible. If the Big Bang was the external starting point of the eternal Christ Mystery, then we know Creation is being led somewhere good, and it is not a chaotic or meaningless universe. Alpha and Omega are in fact one and the same.
The Cosmic or Universal Christ is the divine lure, a blinking, brilliant light set as the Omega Point of time and history that keeps reminding us that love, not death, is the eternal thing. Love, which is nothing more than endless life, is luring us forward, because love is what we also and already are. All life is inexorably drawn to the fullness of its own existence. “Like knows like” and, similar to an electromagnetic force, Love is drawing the world into a fullness of love. I firmly believe we will finally be unable to resist the allure. Catholics tried to visualize this human resistance in a rather clumsy way in what they called “the fires of purgatory.”
But have no doubt, Love will always win. God does not lose.
Gateway to Silence:
Alleluia, alleluia, amen!
Adapted from Richard Rohr, Immortal Diamond: The Search for Our True Self (Jossey-Bass: 2013), 86-88, 92-93.