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In this fascinating historical and cultural biography, Peter Stanford deconstructs that most vilified of Bible characters: Judas Iscariot, who famously betrayed Jesus with a kiss. Beginning with the gospel accounts, Stanford explores two thousand years of cultural and theological history to investigate how the very name Judas came to be synonymous with betrayal and, ultimately, human evil. But as the author points out, there has long been a counter-current of thought that suggests that Judas might in fact have been victim of a terrible injustice: central to Jesus' mission was his death and resurrection, and for there to have been a death, there had to be a betrayal. This thankless role fell to Judas; should we in fact be grateful to him for his role in the divine drama of salvation? "You'll have to decide," as Bob Dylan sang in the sixties, "Whether Judas Iscariot had God on his side." An essential but doomed character in the Passion narrative, and thus the entire story of Christianity, Judas and the betrayal he symbolizes continue to play out in much larger cultural histories, speaking as he does to our deepest fears about friendship, betrayal, and the problem of evil.
Publishers Weekly starred review Seasoned pastor and church leader Will Willimon excels at creating thought-provoking, accessible books for working pastors and seminarians. In Aging, he takes a theologically rich look at numerous aspects of growing old. Drawing on Scripture, literature, current research, and his experiences as an aging adult, Willimon reflects on aging as a spiritual journey. He explores the challenging realties as well as the rewarding joys of growing old and shows pastors how to help their congregants grow old gracefully and in good Christian hope. Willimon also offers practical advice on helping church members as they encounter retirement, aging, caring for the aging, loss, bereavement, and finding faith in the last quarter of life. This eloquent, delightfully Christian perspective on aging will be of interest to all who care for aging souls--not only pastors but also chaplains and other ministers in hospitals, hospices, and extended care facilities. About the Series Pastors are called to help people navigate the profound mysteries of being human, from birth to death and everything in between. This series, edited by leading pastoral theologian Jason Byassee, provides pastors and pastors-in-training with rich theological reflection on the various seasons that make up a human life, helping them minister with greater wisdom and joy.
"Reconciliation: The Ubuntu Theology of Desmond Tutu" is Michael Battle's highly original analysis of Bishop Tutu's theology of Ubuntu -- an African concept recognizing that persons and groups form their identities in relation to one another -- and the model it affords for facilitating interracial community and reconciliation in South Africa.
Carefully drawing on a wide range of primary sources, including Tutu's unpublished speeches, addresses, and sermons, as well as a variety of secondary sources, Battle portrays Tutu as a theologian who embraces Anglican orthodoxy and who has consistently applied that framework to issues of race in the South African context.
Yet Desmond Tutu is much more than a conventional theologian. Battle wisely recognizes in him not only an articulate preacher and at times an unwilling politician, but most significantly a genuinely committed theologian whose deepest roots are in prayer and protest. Central to knowing this Tutu is understanding his position that apartheid "makes no theological sense ... for it denies that human beings are created in the image of God".
The author also looks at Bishop Tutu against the backdrop of major traditions in Western theology (specifically, Calvinist and Anglican) and especially contemporary liberation theologies (including those of James Cone and Itumeleng Mosala) -- underscoring the ways in which Tutu's theology comes out of the particularity of the black South African experience.
Robert Barron is one of the Catholic Church's premier theologians and author of the influential The Priority of Christ. In this volume, Barron sets forth a thoroughgoing vision for an evangelical catholic theology that is steeped in the tradition and engaged with the contemporary world. Striking a balance between academic rigor and accessibility, the book covers issues of perennial interest in the twenty-first-century church: who God is, how to rightly worship him, and how his followers engage contemporary culture. Topics include the doctrine of God, Catholic theology, philosophy, liturgy, and evangelizing the culture. This work will be of special interest to readers concerned about the so-called "new atheism."
Each day, the world's urban population swells by almost 200,000. With every passing week, more than a million people new to cities face unexpected realities and challenges of urban life. Just like the sheer volume of people in the city, these challenges can be staggering. As with the height and breadth of our metropolises, the wonders of urban life can be breathtaking. Like the city itself, the questions and challenges of urban life are both sprawling and pulsing with vitality. As part of Zondervan's Ordinary Theology series, this volume offers a series of Christian reflections on some of the most basic and universal challenges of 21st century urban life. It takes one important dimension of what it means to be human-that human beings are made to be for God, for others, and for creation-and asks, "What are the implications of who God made us to be for how we ought to live in our cities?" This book is intended for Christians facing the riddle of urban creation care, discerning the shape of community life, struggling with the challenges of wealth and poverty, and wondering at the global influence of cities. It is meant for those whose lives and livelihoods are inextricably bound up in the flourishing of their neighborhood and also for those who live in the shadow of cities. Most of all, it is meant for those grappling with the relationship between the cities of tomorrow and the glorious city to come.
A leading voice of progressive Christianity makes a powerful case for faith as a radical way of being in the world During his thirty-year career as a parish minister and professor, Robin Meyers has focused on renewing the church as an instrument of social change and personal transformation. In this provocative and passionate book, he explores the decline of the church as a community of believers and calls readers back to the church's roots as a community of resistance. Shifting the conversation about church renewal away from theological purity and marketing strategies that embrace cultural norms, and toward "embodied noncompliance" with the dominant culture, Meyers urges a return to the revolutionary spirit that marked Jesus's ministry. Framing his discussion around three poems by twentieth-century Polish poet Anna Kamienska, Meyers casts the nature of faith as a force that stands against anything and everything that engenders death and indignity. He calls for active-sometimes even subversive-defiance of the ego's temptations, of what he terms "the heresy of orthodoxy itself," and of an uncritical acceptance of militarism and capitalism. Each chapter is a poignant and urgent invitation to recover the Jesus Movement as a Beloved Community of Resistance.
'The Lamb's Supper', written by Scott Hahn, reveals a long lost secret: the early Christians' key to understanding the Mass was the New Testament's Book of Revelation.
Karl Barth is widely regarded as the most important theologian of the twentieth century, and his observations about the church and its place in a modern world continue to engage religious scholars nearly fifty years after his death. This English translation of the Swiss-published Conversations is a three-volume collection featuring correspondence, articles, interviews, and other short-form writings by Barth from 1959-1962. Among them are dialogues with representatives of the Evangelical Community Movement (1959); conversations with prison chaplains and a question-and-answer session with the Conference of the World Student Christian Federation (1960); discussions with Methodist preachers, Zurich pastors, and Catholic students of theology (1961); press conferences in New York and Chicago (1962); and an interview at the United Nations (1962). Within these pages, scholars and students will find a comprehensive view into Barth's life and thinking about theology and its role in society today.
Over two dozen Christian leaders describe how they changed their minds about evolution Perhaps no topic appears as potentially threatening to evangelicals as evolution. The very idea seems to exclude God from the creation the book of Genesis celebrates. Yet many evangelicals have come to accept the conclusions of science while still holding to a vigorous belief in God and the Bible. How did they make this journey? How did they come to embrace both evolution and faith? Here are stories from a community of people who love Jesus and honor the authority of the Bible, but who also agree with what science says about the cosmos, our planet and the life that so abundantly fills it. Among the contributors are Scientists such as: Francis Collins Deborah Haarsma Denis Lamoureux Theologians and philosophers such as: James K. A. Smith Amos Yong Oliver Crisp Biblical scholars such as: N. T. Wright Scot McKnight Tremper Longman III Pastors such as: John Ortberg Ken Fong Laura Truax
This classic book asks what it is to know Jesus. It will enable thinking Christians to ask new questions about their faith, their reading of the New Testament, and the theology of redemption.
This book offers a unique approach to Calvin by introducing the individuals and groups who, through their opposition to Calvin's theology and politics, helped shape the Reformer, his theology, and his historical and religious legacy. Respected church historian Gary Jenkins shows how Calvin had to defend or rethink his theology in light of his tormentors' challenges, giving readers a more nuanced view of Calvin's life and thought. The book highlights the central theological ideas of the Swiss Reformation and introduces figures and movements often excluded from standard texts.
Regarded as the leading text in Christian theology for the last 25 years, Alister E. McGrath s The Christian Theology Reader is now available in a new 5th edition featuring completely revised and updated content. * Brings together more than 350 readings from over 200 sources that chart 2,000 years of Christian history * Situates each reading within the appropriate historical and theological context with its own introduction, commentary, and study questions * Includes new readings on world Christianity and feminist, liberation, and postcolonial theologies, as well as more selections by female theologians and theologians from the developing world * Contains additional pedagogical features, such as new discussion questions and case studies, and a robust website with new videos by the author to aid student learning * Designed to function as a stand-alone volume, or as a companion to Christian Theology: An Introduction, 6th edition, for a complete overview of the subject
In Talking with Catholics about the Gospel, author Chris Castaldo provides an easy-to-follow introduction to basic Catholic belief and practice, equipping evangelical Protestants for more fruitful spiritual conversations. Written in accessible, non-technical language, this short book offers readers: A more informed awareness of Catholicism Encouragement to move from a combative posture to a gracious one Clarification of erroneous caricatures of Catholics in favor of a more constructive understanding Based in part on Castaldo's experience as a Catholic and time spent working professionally in the Catholic Church, Talking with Catholics about the Gospel gives readers a framework for recognizing where lines of similarity and difference fall between Catholics and evangelical Protestants, along with handy tips for engaging in spiritual discussions. Readers will gain encouragement and practical insights for gracious and worthwhile discussions of faith with Catholic believers.
It is in the shelter of each other that the people live. Drawing on this Irish saying, poet, storyteller and theologian Padraig O Tuama relates ideas of shelter and welcome to journeys of life, using poetry, story, biblical refelction and prose to open up gentle ways of living well in a troubled world. The fourth gospel tells of Jesus arriving in the room where the disciples are gathered, full of fear, on Easter Sunday. He does not chide or admonish; instead he says 'Peace be with you', which, in the Aramaic of his day, was simply a greeting. To people locked in a room of fear he said 'Hello,' welcoming them to a place of deep encounter: encounter with themselves, with their fear, with each other and with the incarnate one in their midst. Interweaving everyday stories with narrative theology, gospel reflections with mindfulness and Celtic spirituality with poetry, In the Shelter reveals the transformational power of welcome.
The life and many afterlives of one of the most enduring mystical testaments ever written The Life of Saint Teresa of Avila is among the most remarkable accounts ever written of the human encounter with the divine. The Life is not really an autobiography at all, but rather a confession written for inquisitors by a nun whose raptures and mystical claims had aroused suspicion. Despite its troubled origins, the book has had a profound impact on Christian spirituality for five centuries, attracting admiration from readers as diverse as mystics, philosophers, artists, psychoanalysts, and neurologists. How did a manuscript once kept under lock and key by the Spanish Inquisition become one of the most inspiring religious books of all time? National Book Award winner Carlos Eire tells the story of this incomparable spiritual masterpiece, examining its composition and reception in the sixteenth century, the various ways its mystical teachings have been interpreted and reinterpreted across time, and its enduring influence in our own secular age. The Life became an iconic text of the Counter-Reformation, was revered in Franco's Spain, and has gone on to be read as a feminist manifesto, a literary work, and even as a secular text. But as Eire demonstrates in this vibrant and evocative book, Teresa's confession is a cry from the heart to God and an audacious portrayal of mystical theology as a search for love. Here is the essential companion to the Life, one woman's testimony to the reality of mystical experience and a timeless affirmation of the ultimate triumph of good over evil.
After Exegesis frames an inclusive feminist biblical theology, exploring creation, providence, divine judgment, salvation, praise, justice, authority, inclusion, the "other," moral agency, suffering, violence, reconciliation, flourishing, and hope. Each chapter places multiple related biblical texts in dialogue around a common theological concern. In so doing, this work exemplifies a central feminist claim: that bringing two or more texts, often born of different contexts, into conversation with each other generates a productive tension that transcends the dominant theological tradition. After Exegesis thus underscores the fact that the context for feminist biblical theology must be understood more broadly than it has been traditionally construed. The volume demonstrates feminist theology fulfilling this promised breadth, while also staking a claim to the future: theology must attend to humanity's interdependent connectedness to the rest of creation and to such realities as human embodiment, suffering, oppression, hope, and the multivocal nature of truth.
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