A sense of the numinous

Today, Selwyn has introduced a word, which I must admit I’ve not used before; the word ‘numinous’, which as Selwyn states, means ‘sensing the presence of divinity; awe-inspiring.’ [From the latin noun ‘numen’ (numina, plural), & means a deity, a devine power or spirit.]

Selwyn now moves on to discuss, “another distinctive of the Early Church that made it such a spititual force and power was this: it had a strong and pervading sense of the numinous.

It is a word that conveys the holy fear we ought to experience when we become aware of our creaturehood, and realise that we stand in the presence of a holy God. When John the apostle, banished to the island of Patmos, caught a vision of the glorified Christ, he ; ‘fell at his feet as though dead’ (Rev. 1:17).”

From my own experience, I would lean more towards describing the feeling as an overwhelming sense of awe, and less of fear. It’s the fantastic sense of majesty that would cause anyone to fall down and await His command; yet, at the same time, there is also an unparalleled feeling of peace and safety.