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Christian Thought Revisited: Three Types of Theology [Paperback]

By Justo L. Gonzalez (Author)
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Item description for Christian Thought Revisited: Three Types of Theology by Justo L. Gonzalez...

From the publisher: First published in 1989, Christian Thought Revisited offers an overview of three basic models of theology in Western Christianity. The purpose of this categorization is to help students understand the validity and application of all three models in the study of theology today. Gonzalez has updated the discussion on each model to include contemporary concerns. Type A, historically the most influential of the three types, originated in Carthage and is epitomized in the work of Terullian. Often called "moral theology," Type A theology believes that God is the giver of the old and new law. Clement of Alexandria and Origen capture the essence of the "metaphysical" theology, or Type B, which originated in Alexandria. This theology is philosophical and mystical--discerning hidden patterns in the scriptures, and in the person and revelation of Christ. Type C, the "pastoral" theology, whose origins are in the lands we today know as Turkey and Syria is manifested in the works of Irenaeus of Lyon. In this model, God leads a people throughout the vicissitudes of history. Though the "pastoral" theology is a prevalent theme in the Scriptures, it is the least practiced type of theology. While Type A and B favor the social status quo, Gonzalez finds Type C incorporates and is best suited for the challenges of our world today.

Publishers Description
First published in 1989, Christian Thought Revisited offers an overview of three basic models of theology in Western Christianity. The purpose of this categorization is to help students understand the validity and application of all three models in the study of theology today. Gonzalez has updated the discussion on each model to include contemporary concerns.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Orbis Books
Pages   175
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.5" Width: 6" Height: 9"
Weight:   0.75 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jun 26, 1999
Publisher   Orbis Books
Edition  Revised  
ISBN  1570752559  
ISBN13  9781570752551  

Availability  1 units.
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More About Justo L. Gonzalez

Justo L. Gonzalez Justo L. González, a retired member of the Río Grande Conference of the United Methodist Church, went to college and seminary in Cuba before receiving postgraduate degrees from Yale University. He taught at the Evangelical Seminary of Puerto Rico and Candler School of Theology in Atlanta. He played a key part in the founding of the Asociación para la Educación Teológica Hispana and of the Hispanic Summer Program. He was also the first executive director of the Hispanic Theological Initiative. Justo has published more than one hundred books, as well as hundreds of articles, and edited the journal Apuntes for twenty years.

Justo L. Gonzalez currently resides in Decatur, in the state of Georgia.

Justo L. Gonzalez has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Abingdon Essential Guides
  2. Armchair Theologians
  3. Belief: A Theological Commentary on the Bible
  4. Good News for the Millennium
  5. History of Christian Thought
  6. Jesus Collection
  7. Know Your Bible (Spanish)
  8. Three Months
  9. Three Months with

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Bible > General
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > General
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology

Christian Product Categories
Books > Theology > Theology & Doctrine > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Christian Thought Revisited: Three Types of Theology?

Can give you a renewed interpretation of the gospel  Mar 30, 2007
This is truly a great book for those who want a concise history of the development of Western Theology. What makes it truly outstanding is that it's not just a history lesson, but it explains the discussion's implications/relevancy for contemporary theology. You won't need to be an expert to follow the discussion (though some knowledge of church history might be helpful, though not necessary).

As an evangelical, I have been rather frustrated with evangelicalism's view of salvation as simply a door into heaven. It has left me despairing of relevancy considering the fact that I'm not in heaven yet but still living in the here and now. This book explains how much of traditional Christian theology (including evangelicalism but also Catholicism and liberal Protestantism) is based on a specific interpretation of the Bible and theology originally based on Tertullian's legalistic theology (what the author calls type A theology: the Bible is a set of laws to be obeyed). This theology has been mixed with Augustine's Neo-Platonism (type B theology) resulting in the theology dominant in the West:a theology that interprets Scripture as a set of fixed, universal truths that need to be followed. God is the Judge that will punish any deviation herefrom.

But the author shows that there was an early theology, originally from Syria and probably closest to the tradition of the New Testament. The author calls it type C theology and considers Irenaeus its main exponent. This type of theology has disappeared due to social and political circumstances. But it's a theology that considers the Christian faith not a set of rules to be obeyed, but God's active participation in the history of mankind. In this theology history is the stage where His purposes will unfold, where His kingdom of justice will be established. This Christianity is not just relevant for the individual Christian who wants to "change his bad behavior" but for the whole Christian community fighting evil in all its forms and manifestations (including society's). And thank God this theology is experiencing a revival thanks to the end of modernity, the fight for social justice (for blacks, women, the poor) and the resurgence of the younger churches from the Third World (and I'm a woman from the Third World).

Anyways, a book that has made me think extensively and is helping me free myself from more traditional theology that IMHO has immasculated much of the liberating, earth-shaking, life-transforming, yes, even politically subversive elements of the gospel.
A MUST for the student of Theology  Jul 13, 2000
I read this book years ago when it first came out and am delighted to see it has gone into second printing. Since that time I have used this book on a number of occassions as reference. If you have ever wondered why there are so many different Christian religious denominations in the world, this book is a must. If you've ever taken a Christian History class at the seminary level you're probably familiar with this author. Gonzolez is known for two different sets of 3 Volume books on Christian History and now in this relatively small treatment, he brings it all together on how the splits in early Christian thinking developed. In his books he looks at three theological perspectives that developed as Christianity was taken to different cultures. The comparison he makes show the Early Syrian theology, the early Greek theology, and the Latin Theology. His mastery of Christian History goes unquestioned, but in showing how each of the cultures absorded Christianity differently and put their little spin on it, we see the beginnings of split in the Church. Not that all three of these theological perspectives were not considered orthodox. Quite the contrary, but the way in which they perceived Christianity was different enough that it would take that particular theology off in a different direction that eventually lead to the schism between east and west as the Syrian Tradition (earliest form) died off. It even covers how each of the three traditions viewed and interpreted scripture to arrive at conflicting perspectives. You may be surprised to learn that this idea of a unchanging Christian tradition passed down over the passed two thousand years is a fairly tale. This book has spurred me onto further study in the area to find more about the theology that was originally taught by the earliest apostles, rather than taking the party line of St. Augustines Neoplatoism. This is an excellent entry level book into those who are truely seeking the Jesus of the scriptures and one I highly recommend for all.
Presents an excellent understanding of Christian history  Sep 6, 1999
Gonzalez takes what I consider to be a very legitimate approach to interpreting Christian history by clearly separating his perspective on historical events from the objective account of facts and events (see Gonzalez's History of Christian Thought) that his interpretation is based upon. This seems an honest approach that lends credence to his conclusions.
A Must-Read for Any Serious Theologian  Sep 1, 1999
In this short but lucid volume, popular Christian writer Justo Gonzalez analyzes how three different streams of theology emerged out of the Early Church: TYPE A - originating in the West (Rome) and represented by Tertullian, this theology was heavily influenced by Roman law and culture. TYPE B - centered in Alexandria and represented by Origen, it attempted to mesh the Christian faith with the Greek philosophy. TYPE C - originating in Antioch and represented by Irenaeus, this theology saw the Christian faith as a liberating, salvation history. Gonzalez then shows how TYPES A and B continued to be prominent in the Church, while TYPE C was forgotten and has only now become fully in vogue again. This book is a fantastic analysis of theology in the history of the church, and will cause everyone (especially evangelicals) to re-evaluate their thinking about the message of the Gospel.

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