Christ and the Future in New Testament History

Christ and the Future in New Testament History

Christ and the Future in New Testament History

Christ and the Future in New Testament History

Synopsis

Primary motifs in the New Testament, the person of Jesus and the future kingdom of God, resurrection and hell, are examined within their historical and hermeneutical context. New interpretations are offered in the light of contemporary scholarly discussion and debate.

Excerpt

One may approach New Testament theology by treating the various themes separately, as often is done in systematic theology, or one may begin with a core concept (or concepts) that will explain the other themes radiating out from it. the latter is clearly preferable and more in keeping with the thinking of the New Testament writers.

The most likely core concept of New Testament thought is eschatology, that is, the kingdom of God and the two-fold consummation of the present age in salvation and in destructive judgment. But this statement must immediately be qualified: the core is eschatology as defined by the person of Jesus Christ, the Messiah, who is the preeminent eschatological event. On the other hand, the New Testament’s core concept may plausibly be identified as Jesus Christ himself. If so, it too must immediately be qualified: Jesus Christ as the one in whom the kingdom of God is made present and through whom God will consummate the present age.

There appears to be a double core conception in the New Testament that one may term either christological eschatology or eschatological christology. the substance of this volume addresses a number of topics within this double theme, seven of them on ‘the person of Jesus’ and eight of them on ‘this age and the age to come.’

Chapter I appeared in Evangelium – Schriftauslegung – Kirche. fs P. Stuhlmacher, edd. J. Adna et al, Tübingen 1997, 94–106; chapter ii in bbr 3 (1993), 59–75; chapter iii in Jesus of Nazareth: lord and Christ. fs I. H. Marshall, edd. J. B. Green and M. M. B. Turner, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1994, 192–203. Chapters iv, V, vi and vii were published, respectively, in swjt 34, 1 (1991), 31–35; Jésus aux origines de la christologie, ed. J. Dupont, Leuven: University Press, 1989, 193–200 = ET: Current Issues in Biblical and Patristic Interpretation. fs M. C. Tenney, ed. G. F. Hawthorne, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1975, 121–127; swjt 31, 1 (1988), 24–31; From Jesus to John. fs M. de Jonge, ed. M. C. de Boer, Sheffield UK: Sheffield Academic Press, 1993, 168–173.

Chapter viii appeared in nts 10 (1963–64), 274–279; chapter ix in L’Évangile de Luc. fs L. Cerfaux, ed. F. Neirynck, Leuven: University Press, 1973, 51–65 = ET: Eschatology in Luke, Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1972 = GT: ztk 66 (1969), 387–402 = Das Lukasevangelium (WdF 280), ed. G. Braumann, Darmstadt 1974, 378–397; chapter X in L’évangile de Luc. fs L. Cerfaux, ed. F. Neirynck, Leuven: University Press, 1989, 296–303. Chapters xi, xii, xiii and xiv were published, respectively, in nts 12 (1965–66), 27–41; nts 6 (1959–60), 211–224; Int 44 (1990), 132–144; The

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