In listing the three greatest understanders of Christianity in my personal judgment, it should be clear that what is being judged here is me, not the vast numbers of theologians who have vastly greater insight than myself but who I have not read, or not understood.
Anyway here they are.
1. St John the Apostle and Evangelist; author of the fourth Gospel, letters and Book of Revelation. Who knew Christ, was the first to understand and recognize Christ and his ministry, the disciple whom Jesus loved - and one of the most intelligent people in the history of the world.
2. St Paul the Apostle - Aristotle to St John's Plato; a different but equal intelligence; who met the resurrected Christ and was divinely inspired.
3. Blaise Pascal. The wonder of the modern world, a gift for us. Like John and Paul he completely understood the problem of the world and the human condition; and understood that only Christ offered an answer: that there is no other answer, not even in theory.
I'm surprised you didn't include Fr. Seraphim Rose. I seem to recall you saying that he had more to say to the modern mind than almost any other theologian (or am i mistaken?).
Though i like your list, i would be hesitant to add any of the Apostles. I have always viewed them more as messengers than theologians or apologists. That's very nitpicky, i know, but i don't think the average human experience applies to them. They were trained and instructed by God personally. How amazing is that when you stop and think about it? I can never quite fathom what that would have been like.
"Who knew Christ...": forgive my ignorance - do you mean that he'd known Jesus while he was preaching, or do you mean "knew Christ" in some spiritual sense?
@d - I mean he was a contemporary of the incarnate Christ while He was on earth.
So the former, then?
@d - yaaas - is this a trick question?
No: it's just that it can be hard to know when a religious type is speaking literally or figuratively.
Stop trying to reframe, dearieme!
I don't know what "reframe" means, Simon.
Is it when the crowd disparages the ref?
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