The Simple Truth!

1 John 1:5

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him is no darkness at all.

There is a famous story of a woman who tried to read St. Thomas Aquinas’ teaching on the simplicity of God.  She perused a few articles of the Summa Theologiae and finally shut the book with a shrug saying, “If that’s His simplicity, I wonder what his complexity is like!”  It’s easy to empathize with a statement like that, but we have to remember that St. Thomas was not so much trying to be simple himself as to explain and defend God’s simplicity to clever people, which is much harder.  We face something of the same task today as Christians in a culture that wants to see everything as “complex” and “ambiguous” (including the goodness of God himself) because, after all, if even God has a “dark side” then who can blame us for indulging our own sins?  To this self-justifying need to paint God as suffering from various passions and complexes, Scripture has a simple rejoinder: “God is light and in him is no darkness at all.”  That’s the simple truth.  Making that truth plain to clever people blinded by self-justification is the hard part.  Today, ask God to give you eyes to see his pure clear light and ask him to give you the gift of simplicity.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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