I am making it a point to read through Horton’s 4 volume covenant work. Looking at the table of contents in this one, I saw his “Meeting a Stranger” essay. This is materially the same essay he’s written in about four other books. It’s a good one, mind you; in fact, it is the only essay that kept the Reformed faith from buckling under the hammer blows of John Milbank–and returned the critique with a devastating pointedness. So was I going to read anything new? I think I did.
He’s contrasting two ontologies: Covenant and Estrangement. The Covenantal one should be obvious to Reformed readers: we meet God by the divine descent of the Word who is proclaimed to us. No fusing of essences or overcoming finitude. The ontology of overcoming estrangement, by contrast, does not focus on hearing the announcement but on ascending (transcending?) embodiment, as seen below
He notes that the divine descent of the Word is correlated to hearing that Word proclaimed. On the other hand, ontologies of ascent correspond to a vision of one’s own making (idols), p.19.