Kenosis, Justification, and Theosis in Paul's Narrative Soteriology
Author: Michael J. Gorman
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
This richly synthetic reading of Paul offers a compelling argument that the heart of Paul s soteriology lies in theosis the incorporation of God s people into the life and character of the God revealed in the cross. Michael Gorman deftly integrates the results of recent debates about Pauline theology into a powerful constructive account that overcomes unfruitful dichotomies and transcends recent controversies between the New Perspective on Paul and its traditionalist critics. Gorman s important book points the way forward for understanding the nonviolent, world-transforming character of Paul s gospel. Richard B. Hays / Duke Divinity School / Provides an important corrective to segmentalized approaches to Paul. Michael Gorman lucidly connects justification to spiritual transformation. Faith, love, and action come together as theosis the taking on of the character of Christ and, so, of God. Though constantly in conversation with other scholars, Gorman has a refreshingly original approach, illuminating the lively theology of Paul. Inhabiting the Cruciform God clearly advances the field of Pauline studies. Stephen Finlan / Fordham University / In this pioneering work Michael Gorman offers a fresh way to view Paul s understanding of justification and holiness. Cutting a new path through old territory, Gorman leads us to a vision of holiness and justification rooted in the transforming power of nonviolence and the cross. His work will provide pastors with new insights for preaching and scholars with new ways to address old questions. Frank J. Matera / Catholic University of America
This comprehensive, widely used text by Michael Gorman presents a theologically focused, historically grounded interpretation of the apostle Paul and raises significant questions for engaging Paul today. After providing substantial background information on Paul's world, career, letters, gospel, spirituality, and theology, Gorman covers in full detail each of the thirteen Pauline epistles. Enhancing the text are questions for reflection and discussion at the end of each chapter as well as numerous photos, maps, and tables throughout. The new introduction in this second edition helpfully situates the book within current approaches to Paul. Gorman also brings the conversation up-to-date with major recent developments in Pauline studies and devotes greater attention to themes of participation, transformation, resurrection, justice, and peace. --Publisher's description.
World-renowned scholar Michael Gorman examines the important Pauline theme of participation in Christ and explores its contemporary significance for Christian life and ministry. One of the themes Gorman explores is what he calls "resurrectional cruciformity"--that participating in Christ is simultaneously dying and rising with him and that cross-shaped living, infused with the life of the resurrected Lord, is life giving. Throughout the book, Gorman demonstrates the centrality of participating in Christ for Paul's theology and spirituality.
This book is a study of the union between God and those he has redeemed, as it is represented in the New Testament. In conversation with historical and systematic theology, Grant Macaskill argues that the union between God and his people is consistently represented by the New Testament authors as covenantal, with the participation of believers in the life of God specifically mediated by Jesus, the covenant Messiah: hence, it involves union with Christ. Christ's mediation of divine presence is grounded in the ontology of the Incarnation, the real divinity and real humanity of his person, and by the full divine personhood of the Holy Spirit, who unites believers to him in faith. His personal narrative of death and resurrection is understood in relation to the covenant by which God's dealings with humanity are ordered. In their union with him, believers are transformed both morally and noetically, so that the union has an epistemic dimension, strongly affirmed by the theological tradition but sometimes confused by scholars with Platonism. This account is developed in close engagement with the New Testament texts, read against Jewish backgrounds, and allowed to inform one another as context. As a 'participatory' understanding of New Testament soteriology, it is advanced in distinction to other participatory approaches that are here considered to be deficient, particularly the so-called 'apocalyptic' approach that is popular in Pauline scholarship, and those attempts to read New Testament soteriology in terms of theosis, elements of which are nevertheless affirmed.
Uncivil Worship and Witness: Following the Lamb into the New Creation
Author: Michael J. Gorman
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
This volume deals with the varied forms of shame reflected in biblical, theological, psychological and anthropological sources. Although traditional theology and church practice concentrate on providing forgiveness for shameful behavior, recent scholarship has discovered the crucial relevance of social shame evoked by mental status, adversity, slavery, abuse, illness, grief and defeat. Anthropologists, sociologists, and psychologists have discovered that unresolved social shame is related to racial and social prejudice, to bullying, crime, genocide, narcissism, post-traumatic stress and other forms of toxic behavior. Eleven leaders in this research participated in a conference on The Shame Factor, sponsored by St. Mark's United Methodist Church in Lincoln, NE in October 2010. Their essays explore the impact and the transformation of shame in a variety of arenas, comprising in this volume a unique and innovative resource for contemporary religion, therapy, ethics, and social analysis.
Preachers mount the pulpit steps terribly burdened by the conviction that they are somehow responsible for the growth and spiritual well-being of their congregants. How, they ask themselves, can mere words communicate the reality of God, bring life to a congregation, or foster spiritual growth? This study argues that effective sermons function much like Jesus' parables--by bearing witness to divine power. Parables and preaching both testify to something beyond themselves: to a life-giving dynamic that far outstrips the force of words alone. Preachers are not go-betweens or gatekeepers for the kingdom of heaven: rather, they imitate Jesus by dying to themselves in the very act of proclamation, relying directly on God for their sermons to bear fruit. As well as offering a novel interpretation of Jesus' agricultural parables, Of Seeds and the People of God presents a Christ-shaped theology of preaching. Beyond exegesis or rhetoric alone, faithful proclamation is a question of spirituality, of preachers and listeners together yielding to God's gift of new life.
Kenosis, Cultural Identity, and Mission at the Crossroads
Author: Jeffrey F. Keuss
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
Freedom of the Self revitalizes the question of identity formation in a postmodern era through a deep reading of Christian life in relation to current trends seen in the Emergent and Missional church movements. By relocating deep identity formation as formed and released through a renewed appraisal of kenotic Christology coupled with readings of Continental philosophy (Derrida, Levinas, Marion) and popular culture, Keuss offers a bold vision for what it means to be truly human in contemporary society, as what he calls the kenotic self. In addition to providing a robust reflection of philosophical and theological understanding of identity formation, from Aristotle and Augustine through to contemporary thinkers, Freedom of the Self suggests some tangible steps for the individual and the church in regard to how everyday concerns such as economics, literature, and urbanization can be part of living into the life of the kenotic self.
This tried and tested introduction to Paul needs little introduction of its own. After considering Paul's importance and influence, and the important sources for the study of Paul, the volume covers the following key topics: the earliest period of Christianity - from Jesus to Paul; Paul's life before and after his 'conversion'; his individual letters; the major elements of his theology; his attitude to Israel and the Jewish law; perspectives on the Pauline assemblies, including their socio-economic location, meeting places, and attitudes towards women; and Paul's legacy in the New Testament and beyond. The volume has been revised throughout and fully updated with respect to bibliography, and to presenting the latest debates surrounding Paul's thought in a manageable format - including those around 'old' and 'new' perspectives, with a new section on the 'radical' new Jewish perspective, and those related to the socio-economic status and character of the Pauline assemblies. The helpful study questions and reading lists have also been revised.
What is God doing about a world marked by conflict and division? What about a world in which our technologies promise great good but also threaten our existence? What is God doing in a world where the demands for accumulation and acquisition create division and despair? Can Christians hope to be of positive influence in a world that does not always support, reflect, or even understand Christian commitments? Christian ethics often raises such questions as these, and the possible answers vary widely. Paul's Letter to the Ephesians is a tremendous resource for exploring a faithful response to perhaps the toughest question of all: what is God doing about evil? The role of Christian ethics is to take seriously the challenge that, whatever God is doing, God calls us to participate in a distinctive task that embraces our own commitments and labors within the divine purpose. Ephesians says that God has taken the initiative to pursue that purpose and, remarkably, offers that we ourselves are part of the answer to the question, what is God doing about evil?