Joy, and the chance to be God more than he could with just the Trinity.
Wrote this in response to Russ at “The Village”
I hope this comes as a response to Russ’ “net negative” essay.
To me the answer is joy.
The “sufficiency” of God shouldn’t be understood to imply that there can’t be a “more than” in his universe. “sufficiency” doesn’t necessarily mean that there can’t be a better cheesecake than the one you’ve got. It’s an analog concept. Joy is what we experience when we realize that what we had was good, but this is better! Listen to Jesus when he discovers the centurion with faith sufficient to suggest Jesus need not invite ceremonial contamination by entering his house, but can heal his servant with a word. God obviously loves these stories.
Anticipation and joy work together. We may dream of a great vacation, and perhaps the vacation we’ve booked is “sufficient”, but we enjoy it, and then when it comes to pass it’s even more enjoyable.
Also, I like to think about the difference between the age of decay and the age to come in terms of what I call relational polarity. The ages work like this.
The age of decay lives by “my wellbeing at your expense”. Dog eats dog. the strong take the weak. This is the way of the age of decay.
God reverses the polarity (or rather corrects it) because life within the Trinity works by the polarity of “your wellbeing at my expense”. In a sense God “enjoys” our need because it gives him greater opportunity to be God, and what Jesus does to his followers is invites them into his joy, the joy of pouring himself out for our need.
We still scramble, chasing the world like “the Gentiles do”, but Jesus invites us into his joy by living by his relational polarity.
We kvetch by saying “but we will die if we do that” and he says, yes you will, but I will raise you up again and the pouring out that you did as a decaying person will make the raised person all the more glorious. Don’t believe me, put your fingers in my wounded hands and your hand in my wounded side.
This is the gospel.