Magazine article First Things; A Monthly Journal of Religion and Public Life

The Role of Justification in Contemporary Theology

Magazine article First Things; A Monthly Journal of Religion and Public Life

The Role of Justification in Contemporary Theology

Article excerpt

THE ROLE OF JUSTIFICATION IN CONTEMPORARY THEOLOGY. By MARK C. MATTES. Eerdmans. 198 pp. $25 paper.

At a time when most Christian theologies are driven toward ecumenical convergence if not consensus, facing up to the harder edges of doctrine is not an enterprise that many theologians are inclined to take on. This is especially the case when it comes to the doctrine of justification by faith alone. The "Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification" has just celebrated its fifth anniversary with a variety of local, national, and international festivities. Lutherans and Roman Catholics who have not wholeheartedly embraced the joint declaration are looked upon as obstructionists. In The Role of Justification m Contemporary Theology, the Lutheran theologian Mark C. Mattes goes beyond the controversy surrounding the joint declaration itself to describe and assess the place of the doctrine of justification in five prominent Protestant theologians: Eberhard Jüngel, Wolfhart Pannenberg, Jürgen Moltmann, Robert W. …

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