Item description for Christianity and Creation: The Essence of the Christian Faith and Its Future among Religions by James P. MacKey...
Thirty years ago James Mackey wrote Jesus the Man and the Myth, which became the defining book on Christology in seminaries and universities throughout the English-speaking world. Now he has written a bold one-volume systematic theology in eight chapters on creation, fall, salvation, God, creed, code, cult and church constitution. It is fashioned out of material from two sources: (1) the major theological movements of the 20th century, which in haphazard, start-stop fashion sought to construct a theology of some of these themes in the light of contemporary cultural categories of thought and imagery, and (2) a thorough reading of the Bible as innocent as possible of the influence of theologies borrowed from Platonism. The first source yields the conclusion that nature and history provide the dominant sources of divine revelation, thus eliding the crass distinctions between nature and supernature, reason and faith. The second confirms the notion that from the opening of Genesis to the teaching of Jesus, the Bible, when read on its own terms, proclaims a creation faith: the central idea being that grace and revelation are to be found in the eternal activity of the loving creator God ever evident in evolving creation. Finding the esssence of Christianity in the lived creation faith of Jesus the Jew, Mackey goes on to shows what the Christian religion has lost or corrupted on the way, what corrections and advances need to be made in all the Christian churches, and what future the Christian faith can plot for itself in a world characterized by an increasing secular culture, by a growing interest in spiritualities without the trappings of religion, and by ever-closer encounters between all the religions of the human race. The fact that Christian faith is fundamentally a creation faith offers common ground for a dialogue of human equals between Christians and members of other religions or of none.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9" Width: 6" Height: 0.94" Weight: 1.54 lbs.
Release Date Nov 1, 2006
Publisher Continuum International Publishing Group
ISBN 0826418953 ISBN13 9780826418951
Availability 0 units.
More About James P. MacKey
James P. Mackey holds doctorates in both philosophy and theology. He began his career in the philosophy department at Queen's College, Belfast, and went on to become professor of theology at the University of San Francisco and then at the University of Edinburgh, where he was the first Roman Catholic to hold the chair of theology since the founding of the university in the sixteenth century. He has been a visiting professor at the University of California at Berkeley, at Graduate Theological Union at Berkeley, at Dartmouth College, and currently at Trinity College, Dublin. Among his ten books are The Problems of Religious Faith, Jesus the Man and the Myth, An Introduction to Celtic Christianity, The Critique of Theological Reason, and Power and Christian Ethics.
James P. MacKey has an academic affiliation as follows - University of Edinburgh.
Reviews - What do customers think about Christianity and Creation: The Essence of the Christian Faith and Its Future among Religions?
A Neo-Platonic natural religion without a Creation Apr 17, 2010
The previous Chair of Theology at Edinburgh University, leader in the modern revival of "Celtic Christianity," has distilled his teaching. This may be Dr. Mackey's seminal work; but it offers only an impersonal vision of the distant Divine, far from the Personal loving God of orthodox Christianity, whom to know and experience is Life Eternal.
Dr. Mackey collapses Grace into Nature, so only Nature remains; exactly as it does in the philosophy of Dr. Mackey's Theological hero, a 9th century Greek, Neo-Platonic scholar(born in Ireland): John Scotus Eriugena.
Dr. Mackey considers Eriugena the foremost voice of early "Celtic Christianity," and uses his thought to define it as a Creation Theology based on natural revelation, articulated in Neo-Platonic categories, and congruent with the biblical faith of Jesus. Dr. Mackey supports his definition by speculating that early "Celtic Christians," embraced the faith of Jesus, which was consistent with the natural revelation reflected in Creation, then turned for help in formulating their new theology to the best of Greek philosophy: Neo-Platonism.
Nature is not "Creation from Nothing." Dr. Mackey follows Eriugena in teaching that Nature emanates from God through the stages of the creative process, then returns into God where ALL begins and ends. Creation remains ephemeral, merely part of God, not the object of God's love. This "Creation Theology" lacks a Creation, having only the changing phases of God. It denigrates Creation, granting it worth as an Emanation of God which doesn't reveal God (who is too far beyond us to apprehend); showing only the ongoing creative activity of created Agents, with such names as Logos or Sophia, that this "One" formed to do the creating and to reflect Divine Light and Life.
God's primary revelation is not through Incarnation. Jesus was merely the one human in whom we see the truth about our created sanctity. Christianity is not faith in Jesus, who gained for us salvation from sin. Such belief is Franchise religion, a pervasive corruption of Christianity which convinces people they are sinful instead of sacred. This error gives Franchise Christianity the inappropriate power to say who does and does not receive God's forgiveness for their supposed sin.
a tough read Sep 15, 2009
one of my highly respected colleagues commends the pivotal insights in this book. Our lectionary group has chosen it for our study retreat this year.
But at first glance it is clear that Christianity and Creation is definitely written for the "guild". If James Mackey wishes to communicate beyond the raified strata of Christological study, he needs to take a scalpel to his work, and prepare it for the rest of us. It's too bad. I am more and more coming to believe in simple-speak. I will slog through it -- and perhaps revise this -- but let the potential reader be forewarned!