I’ve decided to try my hand at a bit more from Gregory’s “On the Spirit.” (cf. here). This portion describes the Divine nature:

It is Triune Union,

It is Threefold Unity.

Neither stream, nor sea, nor rushing river,

One threefold flow rushing down against the earth.

Nor as a gleam of light, returning to its flame,

Nor as a word proceeding from the mind

        yet therein abides—

Nor as a ray of the sun dances

Upon the waters and the walls:

It whirls off before the approach,

Yet arrives before leaping away.

Divine nature knows no flux:

It neither flows apart nor returns to itself,

Eternal center, age to age it is.

And the Greek:

ἐκ μονάδος Τρίας ἐστι, καὶ ἐκ Τριάδος μονὰς αὖθις,     (60)

οὔτε πόρος, πηγή, ποταμὸς μέγας, ἕν τε ῥέεθρον

ἐν τρισσοῖσι τύποισιν ἐλαυνόμενον κατὰ γαίης·

οὔτε δὲ πυρκαϊῆς λαμπὰς πάλιν εἰς ἓν ἰοῦσα,

οὔτε λόγος προϊών τε νόου καὶ ἔνδοθι μίμνων,

οὔτε τις ἐξ ὑδάτων κινήμασιν ἡλιακοῖσι     (65)

μαρμαρυγή, τοίχοισι περίτρομος, ἀστατέουσα,

πρὶν πελάσαι φεύγουσα, πάρος φυγέειν πελάουσα,

οὐδὲ γὰρ ἄστατός ἐστι θεοῦ φύσις ἠὲ ῥέουσα

ἠὲ πάλιν συνιοῦσα· τὸ δ᾽ἔμπεδόν ἐστι θεοῖο.

The Homeric references are fewer. We do have some common homeric words show up (like the verb ἐλαύνω), and Homer does use similar language when discussing rivers. In its place, though, we get a series of negative descriptions; that is, they describe what God is not. Gregory tells us that the godhead is not like a rushing river, flowing in three parts. Nor is it a ray of light, that shoots forth and returns, or a beam of light dancing on the water. His point is stated at the end of the excerpt: the divine nature is not subject to change or flux. But even when describing what God is not, he uses lovely images. One vividly pictures light bouncing against the water off the walls of a city. Gregory is fond of employing light imagery for the trinity, and a few lines laters he says, “one nature, firmly established in three lights.” But here he paints a delightful picture, even as a negative description.

ἐν αὐτῷ,
ΜΑΘΠ

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As I was reading book 24 of the Iliad today, I came up line 232:

{χρυσοῦ δὲ στήσας ἔφερεν δέκα πάντα τάλαντα,}

Meaning, “and standing, [Priam] bore all ten talents of gold.”

Since the line was in brackets, I looked down at the apparatus to see why the line was of questionable authenticity.  I was quite surprised to find this in the critical apparatus:

(= Τ 247) damn. Christ

Yikes!  This means that Christ has condemned this line, presumably because it is similar to book 19 line 247.  Not being familiar with the German philologist Wilhelm von Christ, it looked to me like Jesus had dabbled in Greek philology!

ἐν αὐτῷ,

ΜΑΘΠ

I find myself frustrated with most mainstream contemporary Christian music. I wish it weren’t so, if only because it is so ubiquitous! Some of it is the lyrics, some is just the musical style. However, there are some less well known artists that I absolutely love (though it probably wouldn’t be right to lump them into the CCM genre). One of my favorite artists is John Mark McMillan. His most popular song is ‘How He Loves,’ though most people don’t know that he wrote it.  It’s been covered by several artists, most notably David Crowder Band.

You may not care for the music (it’s a mix of folk and rock, often reminiscent of Springsteen), but his lyrics are amazing. I happen to like the music, but his poetry is amazing.  His most recent album, “The Medicine” is basically an extended meditation on the resurrection of the dead.  One of my favorite songs is “Death in His Grave,” where you get “He has cheated / Hell and seated / us above the fall.”  Or in “Skeleton Bones,” where you get “Skeleton Bones / stand at the sound of eternity on / the lips of the found / yeah gravestones roll / to the rhythm of the sound of you.”  He’s got several videos up on his blog,  including the story behind “How He loves.”  Do yourself a favor and check out his music!

~alex