An old Hindu man kept saying again and again, “God is one, God is one, the all powerful one.” Hearing him, a Christian asked, “Why then do you say that there are millions of Gods—Brahma (creator), Vishnu (preserver), and Shiva (destroyer), as well as Kali and many more?” “You must understand the Hindu mind,” the old man continued. “These many gods are manifestations of the one god. Since god is incomprehensible, the different ways of worshiping god are our ways to know, define, understand, and worship the one infinite creator. We can’t know him in a single form.”
Christians do know God in a single form—the form of Jesus Christ in his life, suffering, death, and resurrection. His is the form of love. This we celebrate as we gather during Holy Week. To know God, we look to Jesus. The one God, revealed by him is a triune God—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The divine Son of God, fully human and fully divine, sacrifices his life for us out of pure love. Even though God’s nature always remains a mystery, we look to Jesus’ Paschal Mystery as the most perfect manifestation of God, who is love. As Jesus says to Phillip, “Whoever has seen me, has seen the Father.” (John 14:9) And what did he see? What do we see? Pure love incarnate. The Paschal Mystery is the supreme disclosure of a God who “so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son. (John 3:16).
As we celebrate the holy mysteries of Jesus’ death and resurrection, we thank our all good and loving God who came to us a child, taught us to live a good life, and died for us. As we worship him, we await eternal blessedness with him forever. Amen.
A priest of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and a Professor of Pastoral and Systematic Theology at the Athenaeum of Ohio, Father Bob Hater is also Professor Emeritus at the University of Dayton. Order Fr. Hater’s new book, Common Sense Catechesis: Lessons from the Past, Road Map for the Future.