Item description for Reconstructing Christian Theology (Christian Theology Texts) by Rebecca S. Chopp & Mark Lewis Taylor...
Overview Just-released anthology of leading contributors to liberating vistas. ''Rarely does it happen,'' said Interpretation of the earlier volumes, ''that a dozen or more religionists author books with so much pizzazz. Lively statements of Christian doctrine.''
Publishers Description Christian theology needs to be reconstructed in light of recent and momentous intellectual changes, social revolutions, and steep pedagogical challenges. That is the conviction of many of North America's leading theologians whose close collaboration over several years bring us this exciting volume. Reconstructing Christian Theology introduces theology in such a way that readers can discern the relevance of historical materials, pose theological questions, and begin to think theologically for themselves. Further, like other projects of the Workgroup on Constructive Theology, this volume stems from a deep desire to model a credible, creative, and engaged contemporary theology. So each chapter tackles major Christian teaching, juxtaposes it with a significant social or cultural challenge, and then reconstructs each in light of the other. The result is an innovative and compelling way to learn how theology can contribute to rethinking the most pressing issues of our day.
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Studio: Fortress Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9" Width: 5.9" Height: 0.6" Weight: 1.4 lbs.
Release Date Nov 1, 1994
Publisher Augsburg Fortress Publishers
Series Christian Theology Texts
ISBN 0800626966 ISBN13 9780800626969
Availability 0 units.
More About Rebecca S. Chopp & Mark Lewis Taylor
Rebecca S. Chopp is President of Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. She is the school's first female president. She was previously President of Colgate University in Hamilton, New York. A well-known scholar of religion and American culture, Chopp has authored or edited five books and has published over fifty articles in her areas of expertise.
Rebecca S. Chopp currently resides in the state of Georgia. Rebecca S. Chopp was born in 1952.
Reviews - What do customers think about Reconstructing Christian Theology?
Building upon a solid foundation Sep 2, 2003
In 'Reconstructing Christian Theology', Rebecca Chopp and Mark Lewis Taylor have brought together a collection of essays from a formidible cast of theologians. As part of a Workgroup that met together regularly to reshape and construct a new theology for the new millennium, Chopp and Taylor served to focus the group together in this text that, while it embraces a diversity of voices, theological traditions and methodologies, nonetheless serves as a solid foundation for students and other interested readers to reconstruct theology along new lines.
This is intended for use in theology classes in seminaries and universities, most particularly in systematic theology classes. Essays address the classic topics of systematic theology (God, Church, Humanity, Creation, etc.), but it does so in ways that address modern concerns as well as traditional theological questions. For instance, in discussion of Humanity before God, essays include a discussion of those who are handicapped and differently-abled, ideas of race and justice, and environmentalism and stewardship of creation. In looking at the tradition topic of Christology, care is also given to examine the unfortunate history of Christian anti-semitism (rather strange in some regards, given the Jewish origins of Christianity), and ideas of pluralism in an inter-religious context.
If there is one overarching idea that runs through the entire text, from start to finish, across all categories, it would be that of Hope. Hope for the future of humanity, humanity before God and humanity in community with each other and all of creation -- this is what theology is ultimately concerned with in all of its facets. The theologians in this text would agree that such Hope is not found in rote recitations of ancient texts rendered into Elizabethan English; such Hope is not found in blind allegiance to bibliolatry or dogmatic codes. Rather, this kind of Hope follows on from the broadest concept of God that encompasses all of creation in all of its diversity, looking for those life-affirming practices that honour all of God's world as reflecting God's will, and all of humanity as reflective of God's image.
Through the essays, one feature that is of central importance is that of teaching the ability to ask questions. There are, in fact, few final answers here. What stands in place of this is the guidance of these theologian-educators toward the proper framing of questions, and the methodology for searching for answers. The task of theology is an important one, but one is in for disappointment if one looks for unmediated absolutes; at the very least, our understanding, our senses, and our capacity for faith itself is imperfectly cast in our limited physical being, and therefore God will always be somewhat (if not moreso) a mystery.
The one drawback that this collection has is that is contains little of theological voices beyond the currently-dominant North American/Western European paradigm. While this theological reconstruction does take account of different voices and issues, it is still very much a product of its culture. The authors present the image of a collage as opposed to a melting pot, recognising that for many people (including many theologians), their differences cannot be 'melted away'. While no theology can escape its origins entirely, this text does a good job at trying to mitigate the negative influences cultural contexts can bring.
A useful text for classes, small groups, and individual study, 'Reconstructing Christian Theology' should prove to be an engaging and enlightening experience.