How can a “monolithic” God be love? I don’t think he can. Because love must have an object, a lover needs another lover. Thus, if John is right, that God is love, it makes sense that God is “on essence, three persons”. It took the early church 300 years to hammer out this little gem. So, the idea is that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit – however you grasp that – were a love circle from before creation, and they (yes, Genesis uses the plural pronoun) created man out of a desire to bring us into this love circle.
So when Jesus talks about he and the Father being one, and us folks and he – Jesus – being one, this is the meaning. We were created originally to live in a face-to-face relationship with God; we messed it up; and Jesus re-established this one-ness by becoming man and paying for our messes. This is fundamental Christian belief, with an emphasis on a loving God who eagerly desires us to return to the circle of love. The emphasis is on what God did to make this reconciliation possible, rather than on the many hoops we’re supposed to go through.
Salvation is there for everyone, in spite of the Calvinistic foolishness about being chosen. Or you could say that we’re all chosen, “for God so loved the world” means everyone: it is inclusive not exclusive. And yes, we are called on to believe. How and when is not my concern. Moreover, this moment of belief brings with it a supernatural “embrace” or indwelling inside of which change happens. It is not our change that makes it happen. When we turn towards God as a lover turns to the one he loves, He comes into us and we are enabled to “be a better man”…or woman.
If you’re wondering what my theological underpinning is, or even if I have one, it is Trinitarian. C.S. Lewis was a famous author and apologist who believed this way. Karl Barth was an important 20th Century theologian. And currently I like to read and listen to is Baxter Kruger. You can find his stuff on Youtube. I’m including a brief and simple explanation of Trinitarian theology for anyone interested enough to read it.
Link to blog mentioned above:
“Our walk with God is shaped by our view of God. A non-trinitarian understanding of God leads to a spirituality fundamentally different from that which results from believing in a self-giving, self-…”
Read More: Trinitarian-Shaped Spirituality