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Series:

Edited by Brian C. Brewer and David M. Whitford

Those who have a passing knowledge of John Calvin’s theology and reforms in Geneva in the sixteenth century may picture the confident and mature theologian and preacher without appreciating the various events, people, and circumstances that shaped the man. Before there was Protestantism’s first and eminent systematic theologian, there was the French youth, the law student and humanist, the Protestant convert and homeless exile, the reluctant reformer and anguished city leader. Snapshots of the young Calvin create a collage that give a bigger picture to the grey-bearded Protestant reformer. Eleven scholars of early-modern history have joined in this volume to depict the people, movements, politics, education, sympathizers, nemeses, and controversies from which Calvin immerged in his young adulthood.

Le ministère sacerdotal dans la tradition syriaque primitive

Aphraate, Ephrem, Jacques de Saroug et Narsaï

Series:

Tanios Bou Mansour

Dans Le ministère sacerdotal dans la tradition syriaque primitive, Tanios Bou Mansour présente une analyse du sacerdoce chrétien chez quatre auteurs syriaques, Aphraate, Éphrem, Jacques et Narsaï, en l’éclairant par le sacerdoce du Christ et en le plaçant dans la continuité du sacerdoce de l’Ancien Testament. L’originalité et l’actualité de nos auteurs résident dans leur conception de l’élection, de la succession apostolique, de traits “sacerdotaux” attribués aux femmes dans la Bible, et surtout du prêtre qui, mandaté par l’Eglise, exécute l’action du Christ et de l’Esprit.

In Le ministère sacerdotal dans la tradition syriaque primitive, Tanios Bou Mansour analyzes the Christian priesthood in four Syriac writers: Aphraate, Ephrem, Jacob of Sarug and Narsaï. Their conception of priesthood is illuminated by the Priesthood of Christ and contextualized within the continuity of the priesthood of the Old Testament. These authors’ originality and actuality lies in their conception of election, of apostolic succession, of “sacerdotal” traits attributed to women in the Bible, and especially of the priest who, commissioned by the Church, executes the action of the Christ and the Spirit.

The Eucharistic Theology of Edward Bouverie Pusey

Sources, Context and Doctrine within the Oxford Movement and Beyond

Series:

Brian Douglas

In The Eucharistic Theology of Edward Bouverie Pusey (1800-1882 and Regius Professor of Hebrew at Oxford University from 1828 to 1882), Brian Douglas offers a critical account of Pusey’s eucharistic theology set in the context of his life and work at Oxford and as the leader of the nineteenth century Oxford Movement. Pusey has often been characterised as conservative and obscurantist but in this book Douglas critically assesses Pusey’s eucharistic theology as a consistent expression of moderate realism which is both wise and creative. The book analyses Pusey’s extensive written output on eucharistic theology and ends with a reassessment of Pusey as a theologian, portraying him as a thinker owing much to Scripture, the early church Fathers, Anglican divines and philosophical reflection. Pusey is also seen to anticipate modern eucharistic theology. Reassessments of Pusey in the modern era are rare and this book contributes to a significant gap in the literature.

Diversity in the Structure of Christian Reasoning

Interpretation, Disagreement, and World Christianity

Series:

Joshua Broggi

Diversity in the Structure of Christian Reasoning examines the effect of Christian commitments on rationality. When Christians read scripture, traditions supply concepts that shape what counts as normal, good, and true. This book offers an account of how different communities produce divergent readings of the Bible. It considers two examples from World Christianity, first a Bakongo community in central Africa, and then a Tamil bishop in southern India. Each case displays a relation between tradition and reason that reconfigures the hermeneutical picture developed by Martin Heidegger and Hans-Georg Gadamer. To see what transpires when readers decide about a correct interpretation, this book offers theologians and scholars of religion a fresh strategy that keeps in view the global character of modern Christianity.

Early Ibāḍī Theology

Six kalām texts by ‘Abd Allāh b. Yazīd al-Fazārī

Series:

Edited by Wilferd Madelung and Abdulrahman Al-Salimi

Early Ibāḍī Theology presents the critical edition of six Arabic theological texts recently discovered in two manuscripts in Mzāb in Algeria dating from the middle of the 8th century. The texts were sent by their author, the prominent Kūfan Ibāḍī kalām theologian ‘Abd Allāh b. Yazīd al-Fazārī to North Africa where he had a large following in the Ibāḍī community later known as the Nukkār. They constitute the earliest extant body of Muslim kalām theology and are vital for the study of the initial development of rational theology in Islam. The sophisticated treatment of the divine attributes in these texts indicates that this subject developed considerably earlier in Islamic theology than previously accepted in modern scholarship.

A New Apophaticism

Augustine and the Redemption of Signs

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Susannah Ticciati

In A New Apophaticism Susannah Ticciati draws on Augustine to develop an apophatic theology for the twenty-first century. Shifting the focus away from the potential and failure of words to say something about God, the book suggests that the purpose of God-language is to transform human beings in their relationship with God. Augustine's doctrine of predestination is read, with the help of speech-act theory and the study of indexicals, for its power to effect redemptive change; and his De doctrina christiana is drawn upon for its semiotics. Together they make way for the hypothesis that God-language transforms human beings into better signs of God.

African Theology as Liberating Wisdom

Celebrating Life and Harmony in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Botswana

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Mari-Anna Pöntinen

In African Theology as Liberating Wisdom; Celebrating Life and Harmony in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Botswana, Mari-Anna Pöntinen analyses contextual interpretations of the Christian faith in this particular church. These interpretations are based on the special wisdom tradition which embraces monistic ontology, communal ethics in botho, and the indigenous belief in God as the Source of Life, and the Root of everything that exists. The constructing theological principle in the ELCB is the downward-orientated and descending God in Christ which interprets the ‘Lutheran spirit’ in a liberating and empowering sense. It deals with the cultural mythos which brings Christ down into people’s existence, unlike Western connotations which are considered to hinder seeing Christ and to prevent existential self-awareness.

Pneumatology and the Christian-Buddhist Dialogue

Does the Spirit Blow through the Middle Way?

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Amos Yong

Recent thinking in Christian theology of religions has taken a “pneumatological turn” which asks how the doctrine of the Holy Spirit can contribute to the interreligious dialogue and to the emerging discourse of comparative theology. Pneumatology and the Christian-Buddhist Dialogue. Does the Spirit Blow through the Middle Way? tests the viability of this approach as applied to the Christian-Buddhist dialogue. Various Christian and Buddhist traditions are compared and contrasted within a pneumatological framework. Is the Holy Spirit to be found along the Buddha’s middle way? Some Christians say yes, while others demur. The thesis of this volume is that such a pneumatological perspective opens up possibilities for the deepening and transformation of Christian theology in the religiously plural world of the twenty-first century.

Series:

Michael R. Trice

Interest in recent years in reconciliation and conflict transformation has witnessed a great deal of attention to building a future through forgiveness and preventative measures in order to impede egregious wrongdoing. This effort for a reconciled future is absent reflection on the nature of cruelty. Cruelty has always been apparent in massive acts of wrongdoing and yet is repeatedly concealed in our assessment of the acts themselves. This book is a theologically honest and deep-structure exploration of cruelty in its personal, communal and institutional encounters in human life. Drawing on Nietzsche's challenge of cruelty to the western tradition, the work offers a comprehensive study of how cruelty undermines care, trust, respect and justice – all those elements of human reciprocity that mark our lives as interdependent beings. The work concludes with a tightly written Epilogue on interpreting the theological meaning and accessibility of reconciliation today.

Series:

A. van de Beek, Eduardus van der Borght and Bernardus Vermeulen

The idea of freedom of religion was developed in Europe in the 16th and 17th century in the context of religious diversity as an alternative for religious wars. The concept requires reconsideration in the current globalized culture: religious plurality has increased as has the awareness of the religious potential for social cohesion and for sectarian division and violence. In this volume, legal experts, sociologists, theologians, and philosophers clarify the historical development of the concept, and analyze the present situation in various countries with religious tensions. They propose possible models and solutions, and discuss the fundamental question of whether the Western model of human rights with its separation of religion and state and freedom of religion can be conceived as universal.