A Jagged Contention: A Categorical Giver

“The biblical and reformational understanding of a generous God, who is continuously giving, sharply contradicts the activism that is advocated in the present age, which wants nothing to be given as a gift. But God is categorically the one who gives. His giving nature defines the form that is his actions take, as the one who ‘justifies the ungodly’ (Rom. 4:5) and who in the same way ‘gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist’ (Rom. 4:17). Creation and new creation are both categorical gift. The first Word to the human being is a gifting Word: ‘You may freely eat of every tree!’ (Gen. 2:16)—renewed in the gifting Word of the Lord’s Supper: ‘Take and eat. This is my body, given for you!’ According to Luther, God’s entire trinitarian being, within his own being as well as for us—though it is not usually emphasized in the theological tradition—is to be apprehended as giving and giving as a sacrifice.”

– Oswald Bayer, Martin Luther’s Theology: A Contemporary Interpretation. Pg. 98-99


Question:

What do you think of Bayer’s contention that God’s essence as a categorical giver contradicts the activism our present age advocates?  Respond to Bayer’s contention below.