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Bahá'u'lláh uses symbols to depict theophanies — the appearance of God and the divine in the realm of creation — such as "angel," "fire," and the prophets' claims to be incarnating the "face" or "voice" of God; these convey the transcendence of God.

Immanence and Transcendence in Theophanic Symbolism

by Michael W. Sours

published in Journal of Bahá'í Studies, 5:2, pages 13-56
Ottawa, ON: Association for Bahá'í Studies North America, 1992
About: Various anthropomorphic and naturalistic symbols are used in biblical, quranic, and Bahá'í scriptures to depict theophanies--the appearance of God and the divine in the realm of creation. Many of the same theophanic symbols that appear in biblical and quranic scriptures are used in the writings of Bahá'u'lláh to communicate Bahá'u'lláh's own divinity and to connect His ministry with past redemptive history. Such symbols include and "angel," "fire," and the prophets' claims to be God incarnating symbolically the "face" or "voice" of God. This article examines the theological significance of some of these symbols, giving special emphasis to how they are used by Bahá'u'lláh to convey the immanence or transcendence of God and to create continuity between His own revelation and past revelations.
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