By infinity we mean, not that the divine nature has no known limits or bounds, but that it has no limits or bounds. That which has simply no known limits is the indefinite. The infinity of God implies that he is in no way limited by the universe or confined to the universe; he is transcendent as well as immanent. Transcendence, however, must not be conceived as freedom from merely spatial restrictions, but rather as unlimited resource, of which God?s glory is the expression. <19E503> Psalm 145:3 ? ?his greatness is unsearchable?; <181107>Job 11:7-9 ? ?high as heaven? deeper than Sheol?; <236601>Isaiah 66:1 ? ?Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool?; <110827>1 Kings 8:27 ? ?Heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain thee?; <451133>Romans 11:33 ? ?how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out? There can be no infinite number since to any assignable number a unit can be added, which shows that this number was not infinite before. There can be no infinite universe, because an infinite universe is conceivable only as an infinite number of worlds or of minds. God himself is the only real Infinite, and the universe is but the finite expression or symbol of his greatness.
We therefore object to the statement of Lotze, Microcosm, 1:446 ? ?The complete system, grasped in its totality, offers an expression of the whole nature of the One? The Cause makes actual existence its complete manifestation.? In a similar way Schurman, Belief in God, 26, 173-178, grants infinity, but denies transcendence: ?The infinite Spirit may include the finite, as the idea of a single organism embraces within a single life a plurality of members and functions? The world is the expression of an ever active and inexhaustible will. That the external manifestation is as boundless as the life it expresses, science makes exceedingly probable. In any event, we have not the slightest reason to contrast the finitude of the world with the infinity of God.
If the natural order is eternal and infinite, as there seems no reason to doubt, it will be difficult to find a meaning for ?beyond? or ?before.? Of this illimitable, ever-existing universe, God is the inner ground or substance. There is no evidence, neither does any religious need require us to believe, that the divine Being manifest in the universe has any actual or possible existence elsewhere, in some transcendent sphere? The divine will can express itself only as it does, because no other expression would reveal what it is. Of such a will, the universe is the eternal expression.?
In explanation of the term infinity, we may notice:
<- Previous Table of Contents Next ->
Was this article helpful?