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Showing posts from December, 2017

The Revolution 1: Why the cross?

A vitally important scandal: Why the cross?First post summarising N.T. Wright, 2016. The day the revolution began: Reconsidering the meaning of Jesus’ crucifixion. London: SPCK.The previous (introductory) post on Tom Wright's book is here.
The day the revolution began has four parts, and this post attempts to summarise Part One.Some will find Tom Wright’s central presupposition controversial. It is that the church has never sorted out what was accomplished by the cross. To do this, he says, that we need to get inside the mindset of the earliest Christians and to understand how they saw the cross.What happened on the cross?Over the centuries, the cross has acquired a patina of respectability. People wear its image around their necks, yet this is tantamount to wearing the hangman’s rope, or worse. The Roman world in which Jesus was crucified was totally brutal, and within it, as ancient writers attest,[1] crucifixion was the extreme of brutality, used to show subject peoples who was …

The Revolution 0: A personal introduction to Tom Wright's The day the revolution began

What did Jesus accomplish on the cross? A personal introduction to Tom Wright's The day the revolution began.N.T. Wright, 2016. The day the revolution began: Reconsidering the meaning of Jesus' crucifixion. London: SPCK. (Available also as an ebook)I read N.T. (Tom) Wright's 2016 book The day the revolution began shortly after its publication, then realised I hadn’t quite grasped what Wright was saying, so early this year I read it again, making notes in the hope that this would bring me closer to the book’s message. I offer my notes here as a series of blog posts (eight, not including this one) in case they might help someone else. The book is probably the most thought-provoking piece of Christian theology I have ever read—certainly the most significant piece of middlebrow theology.[1] I know that this assessment will make some with more theological training than me throw up their hands in despair: see the conclusions of Derek Rishmawy's[2] and Dane Ortlund's revi…

Genetics, Genesis and a philosophical gap

Dennis R, Venema & Scot McKnight, 2017. Adam and the genome: Reading scripture after genetic science. Grand Rapids MI: Brazos Press.I’ve just read Adam and the genome. A Google search shows that it has stirred up much dust in the USA, and there are extensive reviews of it (e.g. here and here) and blog series that summarise it (start here and here), and an attack here, so I shall neither summarise nor review it, but simply make a few comments.The relationship between science and Christian faith as it affects the reading of Genesis 1–3 to evoke a great deal of passion in the USA. Christians in the UK and Australia are in the main much less concerned about the issue—in my view rightly so, as the Christian gospel doesn’t depend on one’s interpretation of the opening chapters of Genesis (I know not everyone would agree—a bit more on this below). I read the book not out of passion but out of curiosity, partly because I had read in several places that Venema’s exposition of molecular ge…