A dramatic tension confronts every Christian believer and interpreter of Scripture: on the one hand, we encounter images of God commanding and engaging in horrendous violence: one the other hand, we encounter the non-violent teachings and example of Jesus, whose loving, self-sacrificial death and resurrection is held up as the supreme revelation of God’s character in the New Testament. How do we reconcile the tension between these seemingly disparate depictions? Are they even capable of reconciliation? Throughout Christian history, many different answers have been proposed, ranging from the long-rejected explanation that these contrasting depictions are of two entirely different ‘gods’ to recent social and cultural theories of metaphor and narrative representation. The Crucifixion of the Warrior God takes up this dramatic tension and the range of proposed answers in an epic constructive investigation. Over two volumes, renowned theologian and biblical scholar Gregory A. Boyd argues that we must take seriously the full range of Scripture as inspired, including its violent depictions of God. At the same time, we must take just as seriously the absolute centrality of the crucified and risen Christ as the supreme revelation of God. Developing a theological interpretation of Scripture that he labels a “cruciform hermeneutic,” Boyd demonstrates how Scripture’s violent images of God are completely reframed and their violence subverted when they are interpreted through the lens of the cross and resurrection. Indeed, when read through this lens, Boyd argues that these violent depictions can be shown to bear witness to the same self-sacrificial character of God that was supremely revealed on the cross.
The Crucifixion of the Warrior God, in an epic constructive investigation, takes up the set of dramatic tensions between depictions of divinely sanctioned violence in Scripture and the message and life of peace of Jesus centering the New Testament. Over two volumes, author Gregory A. Boyd argues that we must take seriously the full range of Scripture as inspired, and the centrality of the crucified and risen Christ as the supreme revelation of God.
Renowned pastor-theologian Gregory A. Boyd tackles the Bible’s biggest dilemma. The Old Testament God of wrath and violence versus the New Testament God of love and peace—it’s a difference that has troubled Christians since the first century. Now, with the sensitivity of a pastor and the intellect of a theologian, Gregory A. Boyd proposes the “cruciform hermeneutic,” a way to read the Old Testament portraits of God through the lens of Jesus’ crucifixion. In Cross Vision, Boyd follows up on his epic and groundbreaking study, The Crucifixion of the Warrior God. He shows how the death and resurrection of Jesus reframes the troubling violence of the Old Testament, how all of Scripture reveals God’s self-sacrificial love, and, most importantly, how we can follow Jesus’ example of peace.
In this bold and compelling work, Gregory Boyd undertakes to reframe the central issues of Christian theodicy. By Boyd's estimate, theologians still draw too heavily on Augustine's response to the problem of evil, attributing pain and suffering to the mysterious "good" purposes of God. Accordingly, modern Christians are inclined not to expect evil and so are baffled but resigned when it occurs. New Testament writers, on the other hand, were inclined to expect evil and fight against it. Modern Christians attempt to intellectually understand evil, whereas New Testament writers grappled with overcoming evil. Through a close and sophisticated reading of both Old and New Testaments, Boyd argues that Satan has been in an age-long (but not eternal) battle against God, and that this conflict "is a major dimension of the ultimate canvas against which everything within the biblical narrative, from creation to the eschaton, is to be painted and therefore understood." No less edifying than it is provocative, God at War will reward the careful attention of scholars, pastors, students and educated laypersons alike.
Where does evil come from? If there is a sovereign creator God, as Christian faith holds, is this God ultimately responsible for evil? Does God's sovereignty mean that God causes each instance of sin and suffering? How do Satan, his demons and hell fit into God's providential oversight of all creation and history? How does God interact with human intention and action? If people act freely, does God know in particular every human decision before the choice is made? In this important book Gregory A. Boyd mounts a thorough response to these ages-old questions, which remain both crucial and contentious, both practical and complex. In this work Boyd defends his scripturally grounded trinitarian warfare theodicy (presented in God at War) with rigorous philosophical reflection and insights from human experience and scientific discovery. Critiquing the classical Calvinist solution to the problem of evil, he advocates an alternative understanding of the sovereignty of the trinitarian God and of the reality of Satan that sheds light on our fallen human condition. While all may not agree with Boyd's conclusions, Satan and the Problem of Evil promises to advance the church's discussion of these critical issues.
Author: Anthony Bartlett
Publisher: A&C Black
Release Date: 2001-04-01
Offers a rich historical and theological overview of the evolution of various atonement theories, examining the components of violence and sacrifice as a means of salvation, and using literature, art, and philosophy to provide a creative and provocative reading of Christian atonement. Original.
The church was established to serve the world with Christ-like love, not to rule the world. It is called to look like a corporate Jesus, dying on the cross for those who crucified him, not a religious version of Caesar. It is called to manifest the kingdom of the cross in contrast to the kingdom of the sword. Whenever the church has succeeded in gaining what most American evangelicals are now trying to get – political power – it has been disastrous both for the church and the culture. Whenever the church picks up the sword, it lays down the cross. The present activity of the religious right is destroying the heart and soul of the evangelical church and destroying its unique witness to the world. The church is to have a political voice, but we are to have it the way Jesus had it: by manifesting an alternative to the political, “power over,” way of doing life. We are to transform the world by being willing to suffer for others – exercising “power under,” not by getting our way in society – exercising “power over.”
In Benefit of the Doubt, influential theologian, pastor, and bestselling author Gregory Boyd invites readers to embrace a faith that doesn't strive for certainty, but rather for commitment in the midst of uncertainty. Boyd rejects the idea that a person's faith is as strong as it is certain. In fact, he makes the case that doubt can enhance faith and that seeking certainty is harming many in today's church. Readers who wrestle with their faith will welcome Boyd's message that experiencing a life-transforming relationship with Christ is possible, even with unresolved questions about the Bible, theology, and ethics. Boyd shares stories of his own painful journey, and stories of those to whom he has ministered, with a poignant honesty that will resonate with readers of all ages.
N. T. Wright's magnum opus Paul and the Faithfulness of God is a landmark study on the history and thought of the apostle Paul. This volume brings together a stellar group of international scholars to critically assess an array of issues in Wright's work. Essays in Part I set Wright in the context of other Pauline theologies. Part II addresses methodological issues in Wright's approach, including critical realism, historiography, intertextuality, and narrative. In Part III on context, scholars measure Wright' representation of early Judaism, Greek philosophy, paganism, and the Roman Empire. Part IV turns to Wright's exegetical decisions regarding law, covenant, and election, the "New Perspective," justification and redemption, Christology, Spirit, eschatology, and ethics. Part V at last speaks to the implications of Wright's work for the church's theology, sacraments, and mission, and for global responsibility in a "postmodern" age. The volume includes a critical response from Wright himself.
Author: Wolfgang Achtner
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
Release Date: 2002
Theories of the nature of time offered by anthropology, science, and religion are not only numerous but also very different. This groundbreaking book cuts through the confusion by introducing a provocative new tripolar model of time that integrates the human, natural, and religious dimensions of time into a single, harmonious whole. Wolfgang Achtner, Stefan Kunz, and Thomas Walter begin by exploring the structures of time in anthropological terms. They discuss time phenomenologically, showing how it can be experienced in three distinct ways -- the mythic-cyclic, the rational-linear, and the mystic-holistic -- and they root these experiences in the findings of modern neuroscience and trace these three forms of the perception of time within various cultures of antiquity. The second part of the book looks at time as it has been described by some of sciences most profound theories, including classical mechanics, the special and general theories of relativity, quantum mechanics, thermodynamics, and chaos theory. The authors then bring religion into the equation by surveying how time is conceived in both the Hebrew Bible and the Christian New Testament. They distinguish time concepts in wisdom and apocalyptic literature from time concepts in prophetic literature, and they demonstrate the basic eschatological orientation of the Christian view of time. "Dimensions of Time culminates by tying together the various strands of the authors' multidisciplinary, tripolar model of time. Offering a fascinating application of their unique theory, Achtner, Kunz, and Walter show how the unhealthy acceleration of life in contemporary society needs to be balanced by a rediscovery ofthe mystical experience of time, leading to a greater, deeper sense of human fulfillment.
Author: Mark Bredin
Publisher: Authentic Media
Release Date: 2003
Jesus, Revolutionary of Peace demonstrates that the figure of Jesus in the book of Revelation can be best understood as an active non-violent revolutionary. Jesus was a warrior of the non-violent tradition. He sought to conquer his enemies not through violence but through compassion. Seeking to present a comprehensive, balanced view of this non-violent Jesus, Mark Bredin engages with Mahatma Gandhi's theory to explore the place of non-violence in the biblical tradition.
A Coherent Pauline Theology of Gender Respected New Testament scholar Cynthia Long Westfall offers a coherent Pauline theology of gender, which includes fresh perspectives on the most controverted texts. Westfall interprets passages on women and men together and places those passages in the context of the Pauline corpus as a whole. She offers viable alternatives for some notorious interpretive problems in certain Pauline passages, reframing gender issues in a way that stimulates thinking, promotes discussion, and moves the conversation forward. As Westfall explores the significance of Paul's teaching on both genders, she seeks to support and equip males and females to serve in their area of gifting.
This accessible yet comprehensive primer explores the breadth of viewpoints on major issues in evangelical theology by examining positions taken by evangelicals on seventeen seminal issues. The second edition retains the helpful features of the first edition and adds an appendix that addresses thirteen peripheral issues in contemporary evangelicalism. Praise for the first edition "The authors do what no book on the market does: In one volume they faithfully present divergent views on the crucial issues that divide evangelicals, and they do so in an unbiased, succinct, and lively manner. This book is perfect as a supplemental text in an introductory theology course or as a manual for church study groups. It will help everyone arrive at his or her own conclusions within the parameters of the evangelical tradition."--Dennis Okholm, Azusa Pacific University "Across the Spectrum succeeds with distinction in at least two respects. First, it represents a very useful tool for those who wish to begin grappling with different approaches to difficult theological problems. The book will be most helpful to beginning students in evangelical theology, the target audience. Second, the work presents various perspectives in fair and unbiased tones. . . . If used with care, it will repeatedly reward the reader with its fair and even treatment of different theological views."--Nathan D. Holsteen, Bibliotheca Sacra "I've been waiting for this book for some time. Due to its brief, nontechnical format, it can be used in a variety of ways in undergraduate theology courses. Although a concise volume, it succinctly outlines multiple arguments, both pro and con, for (incredibly!) over two dozen issues in disputed, largely non-fundamental areas of doctrine. The professor can present positions in favor of particular views or leave the issues open. It's settled--I'm requiring it!"--Gary R. Habermas, Liberty University "A collective sigh of relief will arise from the evangelical student body when it discovers this book! It helpfully and critically surveys the many legitimate evangelical theological options and convincingly demonstrates that there is no single authentically evangelical viewpoint on a wide range of controversial issues. It constitutes a small library between two covers."--Roger E. Olson, George W. Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University