One of the sentiments and occasional explicit critique of developed theological reflection on the Trinity has to do with God’s ineffability, infinity, or excessiveness. Since God is infinitely more than we can apprehend or conceptually situate, the reasoning goes, we should not work to develop extensive theologies about the nature of God’s being and personhood. To do so is to fail to respect God’s transcendence and inexhaustible plenitude.
The big problem with this sort of false theological humility is how it gets things backwards. It assumes that since God’s being is “exceedingly abundantly beyond all the we could ask or think” that therefore our attempts to understand it are vain and potentially idolatrous. What an awareness of God’s excessiveness and plenitude should do however, is not discourage us from attempting to know God, but rather drive us to that task. Because God is inexhaustibly excessive and infinitely rich in being, we should strive all the more to know and learn and speak about God.
God’s infinitude does not signify a lack of our ability to be brought into knowledge of God, or make God unspeakable. It should not be construed as a sort of deferral, but rather as an overabundant arrival that cannot be exhausted. It is not that God is so ineffable that we cannot speak of God, rather God is so utterly excessive in his self-giving that we cannot ever finish saying enough about God. This is why theology must be understood as doxology. God’s excessiveness means that we must never stop saying things about God’s being, exploring his unveiled reality, because it is only in this way that we come to participate in God’s life, to experience salvation.
In short, God’s excessiveness, his incomprehensibility should not discourage our theological reflections and statements about God. Rather it demands that we never ever stop such exploration and that we understand that task as the vocation of joyful doxology.