Let's zig over to Chapp's The God of Covenant and Creation, which we were discussing the post before last. Specifically, we pretty much agreed that divine immutability must be understood analogically -- like anything else we say of God, otherwise we will be led astray.
Which is equally true of any idea about anything. Concepts help us to understand the object in question, but they aren't the object itself. Rather, they are the intelligible part of the object. (There are more elegant and official ways of saying that, but you get the point.)
In this regard, Thomistic common sense occupies a nuanced third position between a naive and precritical realism on the one hand, and a Kantian phenomenalism on the other. The latter is the basis for the widespread barbarism that "perception is reality," AKA the absolute relativism of my truth, my lived experience, and other pathologies of the left. As if the cosmos starts and stops at their convenience!
Everything, no matter how intelligible, is always partly unintelligible, which is precisely why our knowledge of things proceeds more deeply in an asymptotic manner. At the top of the asymptote is God himself; or, God is the origin of the infinite asymptotic ray(s) emanating from Celestial Central. Grab any one of them and ride it back to the top! Or, stop arbitrarily and call it a deity.
Come to think of it, these nonlocal rays form the warp of the cosmic area rug, while the circles around the center are the weft. As we've explained before, this is why the cosmos is both continuous and discontinuous: the rays account for the continuity, the concentric circles for the discontinuity.
If not for the rays, we could never, under any circumstances, pull the cosmos together via its timeless and universal principles. Rather, we would necessarily be reduced to nihilism, permanently banished to wanderment in blunderville.
But let's refocus! In last Saturday's post we made a passing comment about the principle by which the Incarnation is possible. Chapp agrees with our longstanding stand that it must be located in nature of the Trinity itself:
the sovereignty of God manifests itself in self-abandonment rather than a holding on to a static and univocal nature.... This exteriorization within God forms the ontological ground of possibility for the analogous exteriorization of a finite world, as well as for the exteriorization of God that we refer to as the Incarnation (emphasis mine).
In other words, the principle of both Creation and Incarnation is God-the-Father's own "prior" "exteriorization" of the Son-Logos. Except there's no "prior," rather, only this immutably continuous (so to speak) engendering.
This is why it's so misleading to say God is immutable and leave it at that, for the Trinity provides a way to understand such diverse things as relativity, change, time, contingency, multiplicity, human freedom, etc. -- you know, all those otherwise impenetrable and annoying things into which we are plunged.
It's a big deal, for it not only means "there exists within God something for which our creaturely experience of spatiality and duration are analogies," but that "the becoming of creatures in their relations with worldly others is an image and likeness of the event-like quality of the Trinitarian relations."
Again, we're trying to shorten the posts, so let's call a lid on this one.