Item description for Violence, Hospitality, and the Cross: Reappropriating the Atonement Tradition by Hans Boersma...
Overview Taking seriously contemporary critiques of traditional atonement theology, Boersma argues that the cross is the ultimate expression of divine hospitality.
Publishers Description The cross is central to understanding Christian theology. But is it possible that our postmodern setting requires a new model of understanding the cross? Hans Boersma's "Violence, Hospitality, and the Cross" proposes an understanding of the atonement that is sensitive both to the Christian tradition and to the postmodern critiques of that tradition. His fresh approach draws on the rich resources of the Christian tradition in its portrayal of God's hospitality in Jesus Christ.
Citations And Professional Reviews Violence, Hospitality, and the Cross: Reappropriating the Atonement Tradition by Hans Boersma has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Christian Century - 10/18/2011 page 36
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Hans Boersma holds the J.I. Packer Chair of Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, Canada. Before coming to Regent in 2005, he taught for six years at Trinity Western University in nearby Langley. Boersma holds a doctorate from the University of Utrecht. His articles have appeared in numerous journals. His publications include Violence, Hospitality, and the Cross: Reappropriating the Atonement Tradition (Baker Academic), which won the 2005 Christianity Today best theological book of the year award; Nouvelle Theologie and Sacramental Ontology: A Return to Mystery (OUP, 2009); and Heavenly Participation: The Weaving of a Sacramental Tapestry (Eerdmans, 2011). "
Hans Boersma currently resides in Langley, B.C.. Hans Boersma was born in 1961 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Regent College, Canada Regent College Regent College, Canada Regent Co.
Reviews - What do customers think about Violence, Hospitality, and the Cross: Reappropriating the Atonement Tradition?
GOOD BOOK FOR CHRISTIAN VIEW Apr 1, 2008
We just a seminar & discussion about this book! Good and solid thought that we learn that hospitality & violence are exist and something that must be understood from the Logos point of view. Reading this book will equipped Christian to stand tall on the ground in Post-Modernism Era. God bless.
A Profound Repacking of Atonement Theology Jul 21, 2007
This book really is a stroke of insightful genius. Hans Boersma, now J. I. Packer professor at Regent College in Vancouver, offers a "Reappropriation" of atonement theology in light of postmodern trends.
Today it is popular to try to suction out all the violence from the cross since many do not want to see God as in any way implicated in violence. Often, theorists will dismiss penal models of the cross where the cross represents God's wrath and punishment as "divine child abuse." But in the face of this growing concern, Boersma does not back down, arguing that God must, in order to accomplish redemption in a violent, sinful world, redeem humanity through violence. Yet, this violence does not perpetuate more cycles of violence. Boersma proffers "redemptive violence" where the violent cross reverses sin, death, and violence and creates an eschatological reality of peace and hospitality.
But this is not the book's greatest strength. With breathtaking creativity, Boersma, to show how the cross was hospitable, uses Irenaeus's recapitulation theory of the incarnation/atonement where God recreates this world through the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ. Recapitulation is the "root metaphor" of the atonement for Boersma. God makes all things new and invites all and sundry into a new world order where violence, sin, and death are replaced with peace, holiness, and life. Under recapitulation, Boersma relocates the 3 historic atonement theories: (1) Christus victor; (2) moral influence; and (3) penal substitution. These 3 images are aspects of the way in which the cross inaugurates the new, hospitibable creation.
This is one of the best works of recent theology and I highly recommend it to any theological student/practitioner as it rewards its readers with a wealth of insight.
For more, see my review in Trinity Journal 27:1 (2006)
Excellent Introduction to an Important Discussion Jan 13, 2005
Boersma's volume represents an extremely helpful introduction to an important theological discussion and a welcome reappropriation of the traditional Reformation-era penal substituition theory.
A couple of issues to ponder as you read:
I am still mulling over the particulars, but I'm not sure if Boersma does sufficient justice to the divinity of Jesus and the cross as God's "self"-offering. Historically, the penal-substitution theory can tend to emphasize too much God's violence against Jesus as "other" to the neglect of the ontological unity of Father, Son, and Spirit.
Second, by starting with a philosophical analysis of "hospitality" drawn from Levi-Strauss, Derrida, Levinas, et.al, Boersma risks the imposition of non-biblical concepts of hospitality on the biblical text. This is not necessarily the case, but I am concerned that contemporary modernist/postmodernist agendas not drive this debate as much as Scripture and Tradition. While interacting with contemporary thought, theology must retain its integrity as a distinctive language game with a unique grammar and vocabulary.
Likewise with Boersma's employment of the munus triplex christi as a macroscheme to reconcile moral influence, Eastern (Christus Victor), and Western (Penal) concepts of the Atonement. This manner of composing Christology, while being rooted biblically, is a 16th Century strategy of John Calvin. Hence the reconciliation of biblical, patristic, and Medieval data under this rubric seems potentially anachronistic.
That said, however, the Church should welcome Boersma's relatively new theological voice. As a Reformed evangelical, he is to be particularly commended for integrating Roman Catholic, Orthodox, anabaptist, and pentecostal voices into his treatment of the discussion. While not uncritical of his own Dutch-Calvinist heritage (note his discussion of Canon #3 of Dordt), Boersma displays it in its best and most catholic light and successfully overcomes the confessional inbreeding that plagues most conservative Presbyterian and Reformed theologians.