Dimitry asks: “Maybe it would have been better for Lewis to avoid trying to explain the Trinity?”
Well, duh, since there is no such thing anywhere in Scripture as “the Trinity” so “explaining” it is impossible. And it even worse to use it as a test of faith, with or without accompanying anathemas and Inquisitions.
Even though all long-timers here know how I view all creeds as worse than useless if they include condemnations and judgements (I am so going to miss the Golden Dragon weighing in on this!), I actually agree more with the Nicene sentiment that the Holy Spirit “proceeds from the Father.”
As many of you will remember, I appreciate Irenaeus, bishop of Lyons, who described one creator-god, Father of all things, and described “the Son” and “the Spirit” as his “two arms” by which he acts within Creation. This is extremely simple a conception (and scriptural), and preserves the teaching that there is one God, who is all in all.
The only conceivable objection to this is that people will propose that this is problematic as to the existence/role of the Son and Spirit “before Creation.” That is easily answered: there is no “before.” God is eternal, and is a Creator — he was never “not a Creator.”
This is the idea that Lewis was trying to preserve when supporting the conception of the Son as “eternally proceeding” from the Father, and the Spirit as “eternally proceeding” from the eternal relationship between the Father and the Son. It’s not as elegant as what Irenaeus proposed, and it isn’t because Lewis did not (it seems to me) view the Creation itself as having no beginning or end. God is all in all. He is not ultimately separate from his Creation: “in him we live and move and have our being.”
Michael, denizen of the Oregon Coast and Lord High Heretic of SpareOom (by appointment of the Golden Dragon himself)