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The Theosis of the Body of Christ

From the Early British Apostolics to a Pentecostal Trinitarian Ecclesiology

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Jonathan Black

In The Theosis of the Body of Christ: From the early British Apostolics to a Pentecostal Trinitarian Ecclesiology Jonathan Black builds on the ecclesiology of one of the UK’s original Pentecostal movements, the Apostolic Church, demonstrating the connection between ecclesiology and the Pentecostal distinctive of the baptism in the Holy Spirit. These early British Pentecostals were not naïve fundamentalists with the addition of a few Pentecostal distinctives, but rather engaged in significant theological reflexion, rooted in Trinitarian theology, resulting in a theology of theosis which resonates in many ways with the Great Tradition, yet is held together with a forensic/Reformation approach to justification. This approach then opens new possibilities in understanding the theological nature of the Pentecostal baptism in the Spirit.

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Amy J. Erickson

Ephraim Radner, Hosean Wilderness, and the Church in the Post-Christendom West offers the first monograph-length treatment of the compelling and perplexing contemporary Anglican theologian Ephraim Radner. While unravelling his distinctive approach to biblical hermeneutics and ecclesiology, it queries the state of today's secularized church through a theological interpretation of an equally enigmatic writer: the prophet Hosea. It concludes that an eschatological posture of waiting and a heuristic of poesis should dictate the church's shape for an era in which God is stripping the church of its foregoing institutional forms.

From Laws to Liturgy

An Idealist Theology of Creation

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Edward Epsen

In From Laws to Liturgy, Edward Epsen offers a constructive account of what God produces in the act of creation and how it is ontologically ordered and governed. Inspired by the philosophy of Bishop Berkeley (18th century), Epsen proposes that the physical world is produced by the way God ordains the course of possible human sensations, with angels executing the divine ordinances. Idealism is here re-attached to a tradition of Christian Platonism, updating the traditional notions of the aeon, angelic government, and the divine ideas, so as to be capable of explanatory work in regard to the philosophical problems of perception and induction: the objectivity and observability of the world are explained by a unified sacramental economy of the Eucharist.

Untouchable Bodies, Resistance, and Liberation

A Comparative Theology of Divine Possessions

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Joshua Samuel

In Untouchable Bodies, Resistance, and Liberation, Joshua Samuel constructs an embodied comparative theology of liberation by comparing divine possessions among Hindu and Christian Dalits in South India. Critiquing the problems inherent in prioritizing texts when studying religious traditions, Samuel calls for the need to engage in body and people centered interreligious learning. This comparative theological reading of ecstatic experiences of the divine in Dalit bodies in Hinduism and Christianity brings out the powerful liberative potential inherent in the bodies of the oppressed, enabling us to identify alternative modes of resistance and new avenues of liberation among those who are dehumanized and discriminated, and to find deeper and meaningful ways of speaking about God in the context of oppression.

Post-Systematische Theologie I

Denkwege – Eine theologische Philosophie

Markus Mühling

Dieser erste Band eines dreibändigen, konzeptionellen Gesamtentwurfs zur Theologie liefert auf Basis des Wahrwertnehmens des christlichen Glaubens mittels einer narrativen Ontologie eine „theologische Philosophie“.
Theologie ist ein Ex-plizieren, Im-plizieren und Kom-plizieren christlichen Wahrwertnehmens im Weg des Evangeliums, das organisch, aber unabschließbar offen erfolgt und jede Systembildung zum Post-Systematischen hin überschreiten muss. Nach einer phänomenal begründeten, narrativ-ontologischen Neudefinition von Grundbegriffen wie Relation, Weglinie, Ereignis, Zeit, Raum, Zeichen, Metapher, Begriff, Name, Modell, Theorie, Kohärenz, Kausalität, Kontingenz, Subjekt, und Wahrheit befasst sich der Hauptteil mit Gottes dreifaltiger Selbstpräsentation im Wahrwertnehmen des Evangeliums. Abschließend werden die Konsequenzen für das Verständnis von Glaube und Religion, Historizität und Heiliger Schrift, den Vernunftbegriff sowie Interdisziplinarität und die Wissenschaftlichkeit der Theologie gezogen.

Le ministère sacerdotal dans la tradition syriaque primitive

Aphraate, Ephrem, Jacques de Saroug et Narsaï

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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.

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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.

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William J. Hoye

Aquinas’ theology can be understood only if one comes to grips with his metaphysics of being. The relevance of this perspective is exhibited in his treatment of topics like creation, goodness, happiness, truth, freedom of the will, the unity of the human being, prayer and providence, God’s personhood, divine love, God and violence, God’s unknowablility, the Incarnation, the Trinity, God’s existence, theological language and even laughter. This book endeavors to treat these questions in a clear and convincing language. Is there a better method for improving one’s own theology than by grappling with the arguments of Thomas Aquinas?

Oliver D. Crisp, James M. Arcadi and Jordan Wessling

Abstract

In the past decade analytic theology has established itself as a flourishing research program that includes academic journals, monograph series, a dedicated annual conference, research centers on several continents, and a growing and diverse body of work produced by scholars drawn from philosophy, theology, and biblical studies. In this short monograph Oliver Crisp, James Arcadi, and Jordan Wessling introduce readers to analytic theology. The work provides an account of analytic theology, some of the main areas in which analytic theologians have worked, and some of the prospects for the future of analytic theology going forward. It also addresses some key objections to analytic theology as a theological method, and aims to acquaint scholars and students with this new and promising theological movement.

Menno R. Kamminga

This article revisits theologian Ulrich Duchrow’s three-decade-old use of the Protestant notion of status confessionis to denounce the capitalist global economy. Scholars quickly dismissed Duchrow’s argument; however, philosopher Thomas Pogge has developed a remarkable “negative duty”—based critique of the current global economic order that might help revitalize Duchrow’s position. The article argues that sound reasons exist for the churches to declare the contemporary world economy a—provisionally termed—status confessionis minor. After explaining the inadequacy of Duchrow’s original position and summarizing Pogge’s account, the article develops a twofold argument. First, Pogge’s in-depth inquiry into the world economy gives Duchrow’s call for a status confessionis a strong yet narrowing economic foundation. Second, to declare the world economy a status confessionis minor is theological-ethically justifiable if the limited though indispensable “prophetic” significance of doing so is acknowledged. Thus, Duchrow’s approach is justified, but only partially.

Andrew Basden and Sina Joneidy

Meaning is important in everyday life, and each science focuses on certain ways in which reality is meaningful. This article (the second of two) discusses practical implications of Herman Dooyeweerd’s understanding of meaning for everyday experience, scientific theories, scientific methodology, and philosophical underpinning. It uses eight themes related to meaning in Dooyeweerd’s philosophy, which are discussed philosophically in the first article (and summarised here). This article ends with a case study in which the themes are applied together to understanding Thomas Kuhn’s notion of paradigms.

Roel Jongeneel

In contrast to the dominant way of thinking in economics, in which economics is seen as a positive or neutral science, this paper argues that economics is a discipline that has its own normativity. This economic normativity should be distinguished from what is usually considered as ethics, which normally has a broader scope (e.g., stewardship). This paper further argues that the budget constraint is a key source of economic normativity, although it is not the only source. Economic-theoretical and philosophical aspects are discussed, and consequences for economic life and policy are assessed.

Michael J. DeMoor

This paper offers a characterization and critique of the idea of bounded rationality and its consequences for public policy. It offers an alternative way of accounting for the crucial features of human rationality that bounded rationality sees, using categories inspired by the Reformational philosophy of Herman Dooyeweerd and others, and then shows how this alternative account of the “bounds” of human rationality points toward an alternative orientation toward public policy-making.

Eddy Van der Borght

Metánoia (Repentance)

A Major Theme of the Gospel of Matthew

ChoongJae Lee

Abstract

μετάνοια (repentance) is a major theme in Matthew, manifested in Jesus’s first words in Matthew 4:17, which also summarize Jesus’s teaching and ministry. The essence of μετάνοια is a change of one’s mind (or will, or heart) and conduct, and thus a turn of one’s whole life to Jesus the Son of God and the kingdom of heaven. While μετάνοια is directly mentioned elsewhere in the Gospels, the μετάνοια theme is constantly taught and illustrated in various ways in Matthew.

Nick Barrett

Abstract

In the late 1970s and ’80s, a new generation of Chinese poets emerged with a powerful critique of the state’s aggressive political reforms. After the 1976 Tiananmen Square incident, the Bejing poet Zaho Zhenkai (known as Bei Dao) wrote a startling poem titled “The Answer” about his refusal to believe in the unquestioned ultimacy of China’s worldview. Bei Dao’s unique style of poetry helped readers make new associations that were otherwise inaccessible to them. This article examines Bei Dao’s use of metaphor in “The Answer” through the lens of the aesthetic philosopher Lambert Zuidervaart and suggests that the poet’s use of self-controverting metaphors makes an absent reality graspable and present. The article then considers the role of public theology as it listens to the witness of the poet’s bewildering evocation of accessing “the real” through disbelief. In consideration of Herman Bavinck’s essay On Contemporary Ethics, this article suggests that theologians (and religious practitioners) should resist the temptation to control the artist’s expression even when it limps with narcissism and moral deficiency. Instead, the theologian (and the church) should fight alongside the artist in helping them to share their staggering vision or, in Bei Dao’s case, the transcendent power of resiliency sustained by the shadows of the dead. This article aims to generate a fruitful dialogue between Bei Dao and the Reformed theological tradition that underscores the uncanny importance of disbelief as an alternative strategy for cultural transformation and faithful proclamation.

Person and Context

Interaction as a Theological Method

Jaeseung Cha

Abstract

The way in which theology is formulated often relates to three components—texts, traditions, and contexts—each of which has its own distinctive and interactive forces to shape theology. The major conundrum affecting methodology of contemporary theology is, however, a radical shift from text and tradition to context, as if both text and tradition had been contextual and thus theology were always to be contextual. What if our contexts are oppressive and violent? On what basis can we resist such violent contextual values? Who are ‘we’ here and what does ‘resist’ imply for theological method? Reviewing various concepts of person in Max Scheler, Korean neo-Confucian scholar Dasan Cheong Yak Yong (1762–1836), and Emmanuel Levinas, this article argues that person, not as a self-sufficient subjectivity but as one interacting with others and their contexts, must be included as one of the subjects that formulates theology, along with texts, traditions, and contexts, and that interactions among the four components are the actual forces for constructing theology.

George J. (Cobus) van Wyngaard

Abstract

The church struggle against apartheid remains a key case study in ecumenical public theology, with particular relevance for the Reformed tradition. The importance of Christian theology in both the justification of and opposition to apartheid is well known. Also, the process of ecumenical discernment for responding to apartheid became a significant marker in global ecumenical reflection on what today we might describe as public theology. However, the idea of a theological struggle against apartheid risks ironing out the different theological positions that oppose apartheid. This article highlights some of the attempts to analyze the theological plurality in responses to apartheid. Then it proceeds to present an alternative way of viewing this plurality by focusing on the way in which different classic theological questions were drawn upon to analyze apartheid theologically. Using as examples the important theologians David Bosch, Simon Maimela, and Albert Nolan, it highlights how apartheid was described as a problem of ecclesiology, theological anthropology, and soteriology. It argues that this plurality of theological analyses allows us to rediscover theological resources that might be of particular significance as race and racism take on new forms in either democratic South Africa or the contemporary world. Simultaneously, it serves as a valuable example in considering a variety of theological questions when theologically reflecting on issues of public concern.

Joseph Drexler-Dreis

Abstract

This essay develops a response to the historical situation of the North Atlantic world in general and the United States in particular through theological reflection. It offers an overview of some decolonial perspectives with which theologians can engage, and argues for a general perspective for a decolonial theology as a possible response to modern/colonial structures and relations of power, particularly in the United States. Decolonial theory holds together a set of critical perspectives that seek the end of the modern/colonial world-system and not merely a democratization of its benefits. A decolonial theology, it is argued, critiques how the confinement of knowledge to European traditions has closed possibilities for understanding historical encounters with divinity, and thus possibilities of critical reflection. A decolonial theology reflects critically on a historical situation in light of faith in a divine reality, the understanding of which is liberated from the monopoly of modern/colonial ways of knowing, in order to catalyze social transformation.

Pentecostal Theology and Ecumenical Theology

Interpretations and Intersections

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Edited by Peter Hocken, Tony L. Richie and Christopher A. Stephenson

Pentecostal Theology and Ecumenical Theology: Interpretations, Intersections, and Inspirations brings together globally recognized and newer scholars to address the complex relationship between Pentecostalism and the Ecumenical Movement. Historical essays address topics such as early Pentecostal responses to and participation in ecumenism, explicit convergences between Pentecostal and ecumenical initiatives, and the particular contributions of Pentecostals and ecumenists outside North America and Europe. Constructive theological essays address intersections between ecumenical theology and systematic loci in Pentecostal perspective, in the hope that mutual exchange and criticism will lead to ways to improve both. Never before have this many scholars of Pentecostalism combined their efforts in order to focus on the relationship between Pentecostal theology and ecumenical theology past, present, and future.

Derek C. Hatch

Five years have passed since the publication of the report from the second round of international ecumenical dialogues between the Baptist World Alliance and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. When this document—titled The Word of God in the Life of the Church—was released, readers recognised that it would demand ongoing reflection and engagement as part of its reception. This article describes how Baptists have received the report during this interval. To do so, the article will discuss printed journal articles, books, academic sessions, and ecclesial events where the report has appeared, been discussed, and critically engaged. The article also articulates several suggestions for cultivating further awareness and active engagement with the report by Baptists. It concludes with the hope that deeper Baptist reception of The Word of God in the Life of the Church will bolster mutual understanding between both communities.

Stefan Paas

In response to the ongoing secularization of the West, much missiological reflection on the church has turned to post-foundationalist, pragmatic and traditioned approaches culminating in a ‘counter-cultural’ model of the church. This model, developed most extensively in neo-Anabaptist contributions, is believed to contain rich promises for missionary ecclesiology in a post-Christendom age. In this article several traditions that have contributed to this approach are examined, with an emphasis on neo-Anabaptism – especially the works of Yoder and Hauerwas. A critical discussion of the model’s idealism and view of culture follows. Based on this analysis, the article discusses how the model of the counter-cultural church can contribute to Christian mission in the secularized societies of the West.

Gabrielle Thomas

This article investigates potential learning for the Church of England with regard to ‘mutual flourishing’. It begins by summarising the findings from recent research, which employs the principles of receptive ecumenism to explore women’s experiences of working in English churches. During this research, ‘mutual flourishing’ (as described in the ‘Five Guiding Principles’) was identified repeatedly, as an area of practice which is a ‘live’ wound in the life of the Church of England. The article moves on to discuss the theme of friendship in the theology of Thomas Aquinas, arguing that Thomas’s particular approach to friendship, if appropriated prudently, could contribute to healing the ‘wound’ identified during the research. The final phase moves on to suggest what it might mean in practice to appropriate Thomas’s theology of friendship in the life of the Church of England.

Paul Avis

The purpose of this article is to bring to light the ecclesiological reality of cathedrals, with a main focus on the Church of England. It initiates a concise ecclesiological discussion of the following aspects of the English, Anglican cathedrals: (a) the cathedral as a church of Christ; (b) the place and role of the cathedral within the diocese; (c) the relationship between the cathedral and the diocesan bishop; (d) the mission of the cathedral. The article concludes with a brief reflection on (e) the cathedral as the ‘mother church’ of the diocese.

Ida Heikkilä

‘Witness’ belongs to the central vocabulary of contemporary ecumenism. Despite its ecumenically significant role the concept has not been defined in ecumenical dialogues, neither analysed in academic research. Already a rough mapping of dialogue documents shows that the concept is used in various ways and contexts but not in a coherent or conscious way. This article studies the meaning of ‘witness’ in two ecumenical documents issued by the World Council of Churches, ‘Together towards Life. Mission and Evangelism in Changing Landscapes’ (2012) and ‘The Church: Towards a Common Vision’ (2013). Both documents see witness as the characteristically Christian way of participating in the mission of the Triune God but give it different roles in the life of the church.

Medieval Franciscan Approaches to the Virgin Mary

Mater Misericordiae Sanctissima et Dolorosa

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Edited by Steven McMichael and Katie Wrisley Shelby

This volume offers a sample of the many ways that medieval Franciscans wrote, represented in art, and preached about the ‘model of models’ of the medieval religious experience, the Virgin Mary. This is an extremely valuable collection of essays that highlight the significant role the Franciscans played in developing Mariology in the Middle Ages. Beginning with Francis, Clare, and Anthony, a number of significant theologians, spiritual writers, preachers, and artists are presented in their attempt to capture the significance and meaning of the Virgin Mary in the context of the late Middle Ages within the Franciscan movement.

Contributors are Luciano Bertazzo, Michael W. Blastic, Rachel Fulton Brown, Leah Marie Buturain, Marzia Ceschia, Holly Flora, Alessia Francone, J. Isaac Goff, Darrelyn Gunzburg, Mary Beth Ingham, Christiaan Kappes, Steven J. McMichael, Pacelli Millane, Kimberly Rivers, Filippo Sedda, and Christopher J. Shorrock.

Der Einheitsbegriff als Kohärenzprinzip bei Maximus Confessor

Eine Studie zu Ps-Dionysius-Rezeption, triplex via und analogem Weltbild bei Maximus Confessor

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Jonathan Bieler

In The Concept of Unity as the Principle of Coherence in Maximus Confessor Jonathan Bieler lays out the importance of the concepts of transcendent divine unity, goodness and truth for understanding the coherence of the whole of Maximus’ thought, which brings together theology, anthropology and Christology into a unified vision that is based on an analogy between creator and creation. Interpreting the concepts of Maximus’ thought remains a contentious subject in Maximian scholarship. By evaluating the interior coherence and historical situation of Maximus’ thought in general and by studying the influence of Ps-Dionysius the Areopagite’s methodology on Maximus’ Christology in particular the author shows the context in which Maximus’ well-known conceptual distinctions can be understood in a helpful way. Jonathan Bieler erläutert in Der Einheitsbegriff als Kohärenzprinzip bei Maximus Confessor die zentrale Rolle der Begriffe der göttlichen Einheit, Güte und Wahrheit für ein Verständnis der Kohärenz von Maximus’ Denken, das Gotteslehre, Anthropologie und Christologie zu einer einheitlichen Sicht versammelt, beruhend auf einer Analogie zwischen Schöpfer und Geschöpf. Die Interpretation von Maximus’ Konzepten ist ein umstrittenes Gebiet in der Forschung. Durch eine Auswertung der inneren Kohärenz und der historischen Situation des Maximus und durch eine Untersuchung des Einflusses, den Ps-Dionysius Areopagitas Methodik auf die Christologie des Maximus ausgeübt hat, zeigt der Autor den Kontext auf, in dem Maximus’ begriffliche Unterscheidungen auf eine hilfreiche Weise verstanden werden können.

The Veiled God

Friedrich Schleiermacher’s Theology of Finitude

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Ruth Jackson Ravenscroft

In The Veiled God, Ruth Jackson Ravenscroft offers a detailed portrait of Friedrich Schleiermacher’s early life, ethics, and theology in its historical and social context. She also critically reflects on the enduring relevance of his work for the study of religion.
The book analyses major texts from Schleiermacher’s early work. It argues that his experiments with literary form convey his understanding that human knowledge is inherently social, and that religion is thoroughly linguistic and historical. The book contends that by making finitude (and not freedom) a universal aspect to human life, Schleiermacher offers rich conceptual resources for considering what it means to be human in this world, both in relations of difference to others, and in relation to the infinite.

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Antonia Pizzey

Receptive Ecumenism is a ground-breaking new ecumenical approach, widely regarded as having the potential to revitalise the Ecumenical Movement. But what is Receptive Ecumenism? Why is it important? In Receptive Ecumenism and the Renewal of the Ecumenical Movement, Antonia Pizzey offers a comprehensive, systematic analysis of Receptive Ecumenism. While still emerging, Receptive Ecumenism is highly promising because it prioritises the need for ecclesial conversion. Pizzey explores the scope and complexity of Receptive Ecumenism, providing much-needed clarity on its aim, key developmental influences and distinctiveness, as well as its virtuous character and relationship with Spiritual Ecumenism. The major implementations of Receptive Ecumenism to date are investigated, along with its significance for the future of ecumenism, especially regarding its engagement with contemporary challenges.

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Edited by Willem van Vlastuin and Kelly M. Kapic

This volume offers fresh reflections on John Owen, a leading Reformed theologian who sat on the brink of a new age. His seventeenth- century theology and spirituality reflect the growing tensions, and pre-modern and modern tendencies. Exploring Owen in this context helps readers better understand the seventeenth-century dynamics of individualization and rationalization, the views of God and self, community and the world. The authors of this volume investigate Owen’s approach to various key themes, including his Trinitarian piety, catholicity, doctrine of scripture, and public prayer. Owen’s international reception and current historiographical challenges are also highlighted.

Contributors are: Joel R. Beeke, Henk van den Belt, Gert A. van den Brink, Hans Burger, Daniel R. Hyde, Kelly M. Kapic, Reinier W. de Koeijer, Ryan M. McGraw, David P. Murray, Carl R. Trueman, Willem van Vlastuin.

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Walter Homolka

Historical Jesus research, Jewish or Christian, is marked by the search for origins and authenticity. The various Quests for the Historical Jesus contributed to a crisis of identity within Western Christianity. The result was a move “back to the Jewish roots!”
For Jewish scholars it was a means to position Jewry within a dominantly Christian culture. As a consequence, Jews now feel more at ease to relate to Jesus as a Jew.
For Walter Homolka the Christian challenge now is to formulate a new Christology: between a Christian exclusivism that denies the universality of God, and a pluralism that endangers the specificity of the Christian understanding of God and the uniqueness of religious traditions, including that of Christianity.

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Laela Zwollo

In Augustine and Plotinus: the Human Mind as Image of the Divine Laela Zwollo provides an inside view of two of the most influential thinkers of late antiquity: the Christian Augustine and the Neo-Platonist Plotinus. By exploring the finer points and paradoxes of their doctrines of the image of God (the human soul/intellect), the illustrious church father’s complex interaction with his most important non-biblical source comes into focus. In order to fathom Augustine, we should first grasp the beauty in Plotinus’ philosophy and its attractiveness to Christians. This monograph will contribute to a better understanding of the formative years of Christianity as well as later ancient philosophy. It can serve as a handbook for becoming acquainted with the two thinkers, as well as for delving into the profundity of their thought.

Essays in Ecumenical Theology I

Aims, Methods, Themes, and Contexts

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Ivana Noble

In the first volume of Essays in Ecumenical Theology Ivana Noble depicts differences between what she calls a sectarian outlook and one which engages in the search for common roots, dialogical relationships and shared mission in a world that has largely become post-Christian, but often also post-secular. Drawing on both Western and Orthodox scholarship, and expressing her own positions, Noble sketches what ecumenical theology is, how it is linked to spirituality, the methods it uses, how it developed during the twentieth century, and the challenges it faces. Specific studies deal with controversial interpretations of Jan Hus, Catholic Modernism, the problematic heritage of the totalitarian regimes, and responses to the current humanitarian crisis.

The Gospel in the Western Context

A Missiological Reading of Christology in Dialogue with Hendrikus Berkhof and Colin Gunton

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Gert-Jan Roest

In The Gospel in the Western Context, Gert-Jan Roest focuses on discerning a Western contextual gospel, an endeavour that is very relevant to the current state of Christianity in the postmodern and post-Christendom West. After giving an in-depth analysis and synthesis of how Hendrikus Berkhof and Colin Gunton read the Western context and contextualize their Christology, he develops a gospel-centred model for reading the context. Meanwhile, he makes a creative and much-needed attempt to connect the two disciplines of systematic theology and missiology and convincingly shows that both disciplines cannot only enrich one another but also can give church practitioners insight and wisdom for their tasks.

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Peter H. Sedgwick

In The Origins of Anglican Moral Theology Peter H. Sedgwick shows how Anglican moral theology has a distinctive ethos, drawing on Scripture, Augustine, the medieval theologians (Abelard, Aquinas and Scotus), and the great theologians of the Reformation, such as Luther and Calvin. A series of studies of Tyndale, Perkins, Hooker, Sanderson and Taylor shows the flourishing of this discipline from 1530 to 1670. Anglican moral theology has a coherence which enables it to engage in dialogue with other Christian theological traditions and to present a deeply pastoral but intellectually rigorous theological position. This book is unique because the origins of Anglican moral theology have never been studied in depth before.

The Trinitarian Testimony of the Spirit

Prosopological Exegesis and the Development of Pre-Nicene Pneumatology

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Kyle Hughes

In The Trinitarian Testimony of the Spirit, Kyle R. Hughes offers a new approach to the development of early Christian pneumatology by focusing on how Justin, Irenaeus, and Tertullian linked the Holy Spirit with testimony to the deity and lordship of the Father and the Son. Drawing extensively on recent studies of prosopological exegesis and divine testimony in the ancient world, Hughes demonstrates how these three pre-Nicene Christian writers utilized Scripture and the conventions of ancient rhetoric and exegesis to formulate a highly innovative approach to the Holy Spirit that would contribute to the identification of the Spirit as the third person of the Trinity.

Jubilee in the Bible

Using the theology of Jürgen Moltmann to find a new hermeneutic

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Lidija Gunjević

The biblical message of Jubilee is becoming more credible in our days in dealing with the socio-economic and moral-spiritual issues of today’s world. It continues to exercise a powerful influence on the religious thoughts and actions of God’s people. In addition to that, this book reveals a new hermeneutical code of reading and interpreting the message of Jubilee. The synthesis of the exegetical analysis of the biblical texts regarding the Jubilee and Sabbath/Sabbath year and Moltmann’s understanding of this subject reveals the meaning and significance of the topic, how it is recognized, as well as its implications in today’s world. This synthesis reveals a new vision and starting point for socio-economic and moral-spiritual reform in our time.

“The biblical Sabbat / Jubilee-traditions are much richer than we thought. This book shows it. Theologically often neglected they are a source of new ideas to solve problems of human community and the ecology of the earth. That my theological works can be used to apply them today, is a surprise to me, a happy surprise.”
Jürgen Moltmann


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Jakob W. Wirén

In Hope and Otherness, Jakob Wirén analyses the place and role of the religious Other in contemporary eschatology. In connection with this theme, he examines and compares different levels of inclusion and exclusion in Christian, Muslim, and Jewish eschatologies. He argues that a distinction should be made in approaches to this issue between soteriological openness and eschatological openness. By going beyond Christian theology and also looking to Muslim and Jewish sources and by combining the question of the religious Other with eschatology, Wirén explores ways of articulating Christian eschatology in light of religious otherness, and provides a new and vital slant to the threefold paradigm of exclusivism, inclusivism and pluralism that has been prevalent in the theology of religions.

“Jakob Wirén’s study pushes forward the frontiers of three disciplines all at the same time: theology of religions; comparative religions and eschatology. (…) This is a challenging and important book.”
- Gavin D'Costa, University of Bristol, Professor of Catholic Theology, 2017

“This book explores of the status of religious others in Christian eschatology, and of eschatology itself as a privileged place for reflecting on religious otherness. Wiren mines not only Christian, but also Jewish and Muslim sources to develop an inclusive eschatology. Hope and Otherness thus represents an important contribution to both theology of religions and comparative theology.”
- Catherine Cornille, Boston College, Professor of Comparative Theology, 2017

Liturgy and Ethics

New Contributions from Reformed Perspectives

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Edited by Pieter Vos

The connection between Christian ethics and liturgy has been on the research agenda for some decades now. Liturgy and Ethics addresses this issue departing from the particularity of the Reformed tradition and its potential for contributing to the discussion. The volume offers in-depth studies of how to understand God’s acting in worship, the centrality of justice, and the formative meaning of the liturgy, and relates these reflections to various moral issues and contemporary liturgical practices. In combining a specific theological approach with a broad disciplinary treatment of the topics this volume aims to push forward the scholarly discussion on liturgy and ethics in significant ways.

Philosophical and Theological Responses to Syncretism

Beyond the Mirage of Pure Religion

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Edited by Mika Vähäkangas and Patrik Fridlund

Theological and Philosophical Responses to Syncretism: Beyond the Mirage of Pure Religion by Patrik Fridlund and Mika Vähäkangas (eds.) starts from the observation that there is a substantial gap between religions’ self-understanding and the empirical results of religious studies concerning religious blending. Even in theology of religion, one often portrays religions as if they were entities fundamentally separate from each other. The aims of this book are to elaborate theologically the consequences of syncretism to Christian faith and of syncretism to philosophy. By creating a critical interchange between theological, philosophical and empirical approaches to religion, this book challenges the conventional views of purity of religions prevailing in theology and philosophy as well as proposes theological and philosophical ways forward.

Contributors are: Jonas Adelin, Stephen Bevans, Gavin d’Costa, Patrik Fridlund, Lotta Gammelin, Elizabeth Harris, Jerker Karlsson, Paul Linjamaa, Kang-San Tan, Mika Vähäkangas.

Sola Scriptura

Biblical and Theological Perspectives on Scripture, Authority, and Hermeneutics

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Edited by Hans Burger, Arnold Huijgen and Eric Peels

Sola Scriptura offers a multi-disciplinary reflection on the theme of the priority and importance of Scripture in theology, from historical, biblical-theological and systematic-theological perspectives, aiming at the interaction between exegesis and dogmatics. Brian Brock and Kevin J. Vanhoozer offer concluding reflections on the theme, bringing the various contributions together.

Comparative Theology

A Critical and Methodological Perspective

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Paul Hedges

In this first volume of Brill Research Perspectives in Theology, the field of comparative theology is mapped with particular attention to the tradition associated with Francis Clooney but noting the global and wider context of theology in a comparative mode. There are four parts. In the first section the current field is mapped and its methodological and theological aspects are explored. The second part considers what the deconstruction of religion means for comparative theology. It also takes into consideration turns to lived and material religion. In the third part, issues of power, representation, and the subaltern are considered, including the place of feminist and queer theory in comparative theology. Finally, the contribution of philosophical hermeneutics is considered. The text notes key trends, develops original models of practice and method, and picks out and discusses critical issues within the field.

Everyday Life and the Sacred

Re/configuring Gender Studies in Religion

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Edited by Angela Berlis, Anna-Marie J.A.C.M. Korte and Kune Biezeveld

An interdisciplinary gender-sensitive approach toward perspectives on the everyday and the sacred are the hallmark of this volume. Looking beyond the dualistic status-quo, the authors probe the categories, textures, powers, and practices that define how we experience, embody, and understand religion and the sacred, their interconnection, but also disassociation with the secular.

Contributions by an international group of feminist theologians and religious studies scholars aim to re-configure the study of both religion and gender: Angela Berlis, Anne-Marie Korte, Kune Biezeveld †, Helga Kuhlmann, Maaike de Haardt, Akke van der Kooi, Dorothea Erbele-Küster, Willien van Wieringen, Magda Misset-van de Weg, Gé Speelman, Mathilde van Dijk, Jacqueline Borsje, Hedwig Meyer-Wilmes, Goedroen Juchtmans, Alma Lanser and Riet Bons-Storm.

Comparative Theology

A Critical and Methodological Perspective

Series:

Paul Hedges

Abstract

The nature and field of comparative theology is mapped with particular attention to the tradition associated with Francis Clooney but noting the global and wider context of theology in a comparative mode. There are four main parts. Firstly, mapping the current field and exploring its methodological and theological aspects, with particular attention to global and intercultural theologies, comparative religion, and the theology of religions. Secondly, considering what the deconstruction of religion means for comparative theology and how the term “religion” may be deployed and understood after this. It also takes into consideration turns to lived and material religion. Thirdly, issues of power, representation, and the subaltern are considered, including the place of feminist and queer theory in comparative theology. Finally, an original and constructive discussion on philosophical hermeneutics, as well as the way certain hermeneutical lenses can bring issues into focus for the comparative theologian, is offered. The text notes key trends, develops original models of practice and method, and picks out and discusses critical issues and lacunae within the field.

Evil, Spirits, and Possession

An Emergentist Theology of the Demonic

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David L Bradnick

In Evil, Spirits, and Possession: An Emergentist Theology of the Demonic David Bradnick develops a multidisciplinary view of the demonic, using biblical-theological, social-scientific, and philosophical-scientific perspectives. Building upon the work of Pentecostal theologian Amos Yong, this book argues for a theology informed by emergence theory, whereby the demonic arises from evolutionary processes and exerts downward causal influence upon its constituent substrates. Consequently, evil does not result from conscious diabolic beings; rather it manifests as non-personal emergent forces that influence humans to initiate and execute nefarious activities. Emergentism provides an alternative to contemporary views, which tend to minimize or reject the reality of the demonic, and it retains the demonic as a viable theological category in the twenty-first century.

Spirit Baptism

The Pentecostal Experience in Theological Focus

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David Perry

The Pentecostal experience of Spirit baptism remains an important topic of discussion more than a century after the inception of the Pentecostal movement. In Spirit Baptism: The Pentecostal Experience in Theological Focus David Perry moves beyond traditional debates by focusing on the meaning and function of the experience within the Pentecostal community.

Grounded in the Pentecostal experience itself, he explores the meaning of the experience in terms of its cognitive, effective, constitutive and communicative function. He demonstrates the enduring value of the experience of Spirit baptism to the Pentecostal community and emphasises what is centrally important – a powerful and transformative encounter with the Holy Spirit.

Habits in Mind

Integrating Theology, Philosophy, and the Cognitive Science of Virtue, Emotion, and Character Formation

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Edited by Gregory R. Peterson, James van Slyke, Michael Spezio and Kevin Reimer

The language of habit plays a central role in traditional accounts of the virtues, yet it has received only modest attention among contemporary scholars of philosophy, psychology, and religion. This volume explores the role of both “mere habits” and sophisticated habitus in the moral life. Beginning with an essay by Stanley Hauerwas and edited by Gregory R. Peterson, James A. Van Slyke, Michael L. Spezio, and Kevin S. Reimer, the volume explores the history of the virtues and habit in Christian thought, the contributions that psychology and neuroscience make to our understanding of habitus, freedom, and character formation, and the relation of habit and habitus to contemporary philosophical and theological accounts of character formation and the moral life.

Contributors are: Joseph Bankard, Dennis Bielfeldt, Craig Boyd, Charlene Burns, Mark Graves, Brian Green, Stanley Hauerwas, Todd Junkins, Adam Martin, Darcia Narvaez, Gregory R. Peterson, Kevin S. Reimer, Lynn C. Reimer, Michael L. Spezio, Kevin Timpe, and George Tsakiridis.

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Cathal Doherty

How do sacraments differ from superstition? For Enlightenment philosophers such as Kant, both are merely natural actions claiming a supernatural effect, an accusation that has long been ignored in Catholic theology. In Maurice Blondel on the Supernatural in Human Action: Sacrament and Superstition, however, Cathal Doherty SJ reverses this accusation through a theological appropriation of Blondel's philosophy of action, arguing not only that sacraments have no truck with superstition but that the 'Enlightened' are themselves guilty of that which they most abhor, superstitious action. Doherty then uses Blondel's philosophical insights as a heuristic and corrective to putative sacramental theologies that would reduce the spiritual or supernatural efficacy of sacraments to the mere human effort of perception or symbolic interpretation.

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Edited by Koert van Bekkum, Jaap Dekker, Henk R. van den Kamp and Eric Peels

Since ancient times Leviathan and other monsters from the biblical world symbolize the life-threatening powers in nature and history. They represent the dark aspects of human nature and political entities and reveal the supernatural dimensions of evil. Ancient texts and pictures regarding these monsters reflect an environment of polytheism and religious pluralism. Remarkably, however, the biblical writings and post-biblical traditions use these venerated symbols in portraying God as being sovereign over the entire universe, a theme that is also prominent in the reception of these texts in subsequent contexts.
This volume explores this tension and elucidates the theological and cultural meaning of ‘Leviathan’ by studying its ancient Near Eastern background and its attestation in biblical texts, early and rabbinic Judaism, Christian theology, Early Modern art, and film.