how to read the bible and still be a christian struggling with divine violence from genesis through revelation

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How To Read The Bible And Still Be A Christian

Author : John Dominic Crossan
ISBN : 9780062203625
Genre : Religion
File Size : 22. 36 MB
Format : PDF
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The acclaimed Bible scholar and author of The Historical Jesus and God & Empire—“the greatest New Testament scholar of our generation” (John Shelby Spong) —grapples with Scripture’s two conflicting visions of Jesus and God, one of a loving God, and one of a vengeful God, and explains how Christians can better understand these passages in a way that enriches their faith. Many portions of the New Testament, introduce a compassionate Jesus who turns the other cheek, loves his enemies, and shows grace to all. But the Jesus we find in Revelation and some portions of the Gospels leads an army of angels bent on earthly destruction. Which is the true revelation of the Messiah—and how can both be in the same Bible? How to Read the Bible and Still be a Christian explores this question and offers guidance for the faithful conflicted over which version of the Lord to worship. John Dominic Crossan reconciles these contrasting views, revealing how different writers of the books of the Bible not only possessed different visions of God but also different purposes for writing. Often these books are explicitly competing against another, opposing vision of God from the Bible itself. Crossan explains how to navigate this debate and offers what he believes is the best central thread to what the Bible is all about. He challenges Christians to fully participate in this dialogue, thereby shaping their faith by reading deeply, reflectively, and in community with others who share their uncertainty. Only then, he advises, will Christians be able to read and understand the Bible without losing their faith.

Jesus And The Violence Of Scripture

Author : John Dominic Crossan
ISBN : 9780281074211
Genre : Religion
File Size : 28. 31 MB
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This brave and provocative book grapples with Scripture’s two conflicting visions of Jesus and God – one loving and gracious, and the other punitive and vengeful – and explains how readers can better understand these images in a way that enriches their faith. Many portions of the New Testament introduce a compassionate Jesus who turns the other cheek, loves his enemies, and shows grace to all. But the Jesus we find in Revelation and some portions of the Gospels leads an army of angels bent on earthly destruction. Which is the true revelation of the Messiah—and how can both be in the same Bible? Jesus and the Violence of Scriptureexplores this question and offers guidance for all who are confused about which version of the Lord to worship. In doing so the author demonstrates that writers of different books of the Bible not only possessed different visions of God but also different purposes for writing, and that for Christians the only God worthy of our worship is the one revealed through the words and action of the historical Jesus.

God And Empire

Author : John Dominic Crossan
ISBN : 9780061744280
Genre : Religion
File Size : 33. 77 MB
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At the heart of the Bible is a moral and ethical call to fight unjust superpowers, whether they are Babylon, Rome, or even America. From the divine punishment and promise found in Genesis through the revolutionary messages of Jesus and Paul, John Dominic Crossan reveals what the Bible has to say about land and economy, violence and retribution, justice and peace, and, ultimately, redemption. In contrast to the oppressive Roman military occupation of the first century, he examines the meaning of the non-violent Kingdom of God prophesized by Jesus and the equality advocated by Paul to the early Christian churches. Crossan contrasts these messages of peace with the misinterpreted apocalyptic vision from the Book of Revelation, which has been misrepresented by modern right-wing theologians and televangelists to justify U.S. military actions in the Middle East. In God and Empire Crossan surveys the Bible from Genesis to Apocalypse, or the Book of Revelation, and discovers a hopeful message that cannot be ignored in these turbulent times. The first-century Pax Romana, Crossan points out, was in fact a "peace" won through violent military action. Jesus preached a different kind of peace—a peace that surpasses all understanding—and a kingdom not of Caesar but of God. The Romans executed Jesus because he preached this Kingdom of God, a kingdom based on peace and justice, over the empire of Rome, which ruled by violence and force. For Jesus and Paul, Crossan explains, peace cannot be won the Roman way, through military victory, but only through justice and fair and equal treatment of all people.

Competing Fundamentalisms

Author : Sathianathan Clarke
ISBN : 9781611648102
Genre : Religion
File Size : 70. 88 MB
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Why do certain groups and individuals seek to do harm in the name of God? While studies often claim to hold the key to this frightening phenomenon, they seldom account for the crucial role that religious conviction plays, not just in radical Islam, but also in the fundamentalist branches of the world's two other largest religions: Christianity and Hinduism. As the first book to examine violent extremism in all three religions together, Competing Fundamentalisms draws on studies in sociology, psychology, culture, and economics—while focusing on the central role of religious ideas—to paint a richer portrait of this potent force in modern life. Clarke argues that the forces of globalization fuel the aggression of these movements to produce the competing feature of religious fundamentalisms, which have more in common with their counterparts across religious lines than they do with the members of their own religions. He proposes ways to deescalate religious violence in the service of peacemaking. Readers will gain important insights into how violent religious fundamentalism works in the world's three largest religions and learn new strategies for promoting peace in the context of contemporary interreligious conflict.

Resurrecting Easter

Author : John Dominic Crossan
ISBN : 9780062434203
Genre : Religion
File Size : 44. 12 MB
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In this four-color illustrated journey that is part travelogue and part theological investigation, bestselling author and acclaimed Bible scholar John Dominic Crossan and his wife Sarah painstakingly travel throughout the ancient Eastern church, documenting through text and image a completely different model for understanding Easter’s resurrection story, one that provides promise and hope for us today. Traveling the world, the Crossans noticed a surprising difference in how the Eastern Church considers Jesus’ resurrection—an event not described in the Bible. At Saint Barbara’s Church in Cairo, they found a painting in which the risen Jesus grasps the hands of other figures around him. Unlike the Western image of a solitary Jesus rising from an empty tomb that he viewed across Eastern Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, the Crossans saw images of the resurrection depicting a Jesus grasping the hands of figures around him, or lifting Adam and Eve to heaven from Hades or hell, or carrying the old and sick to the afterlife. They discovered that the standard image for the Resurrection in Eastern Christianity is communal and collective, something unique from the solitary depiction of the resurrection in Western Christianity. Fifteen years in the making, Resurrecting Easter reflects on this divide in how the Western and Eastern churches depict the resurrection and its implications. The Crossans argue that the West has gutted the heart of Christianity’s understanding of the resurrection by rejecting that once-common communal iconography in favor of an individualistic vision. As they examine the ubiquitous Eastern imagery of Jesus freeing Eve from Hades while ascending to heaven, the Crossans suggest that this iconography raises profound questions about Christian morality and forgiveness. A fundamentally different way of understand the story of Jesus’ rebirth illustrated with 130 images, Resurrecting Easter introduces an inclusive, traditional community-based ideal that offers renewed hope and possibilities for our fractured modern society.

The Vehement Jesus

Author : David J. Neville
ISBN : 9781532642722
Genre : Religion
File Size : 73. 23 MB
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The Vehement Jesus composes a fresh examination and interpretation of several perplexing passages in the Gospels that, at face value, challenge the conviction that the mission and message of Jesus were peaceful. Using narrative analysis and various forms of intratextual critique in the service of a hermeneutic of shalom, the author makes the case that Gospel portrayals of the vehement Jesus are compatible with, perhaps even indispensable to, the composite canonical portrait of Jesus as the Messiah of Peace. As a result, this exploration in New Testament theology and ethics makes an invaluable contribution to the crucial conversation about the role of Jesus’ life and teaching in Christian reflection on the morality of violence today.

I Will Repay

Author : Dennis Oh
ISBN : 9781532638558
Genre : Religion
File Size : 72. 35 MB
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How can Christianity continue to rejoice over a redemption that came at the cost of the violent suffering and death of Jesus Christ? In the wake of increasing revulsion toward oppression and abuse—both historic and contemporary—traditionally Protestant and evangelical theology is in the precarious position of defending one of its cardinal doctrines amidst a host of compelling critiques and alternatives. In I Will Repay, Dennis Oh explores how soteriology rooted in Scripture and resonant with tradition can also be conversant with the cinematic experience offered by popular films. It proposes a narrative reenvisioning of the mechanism of atonement that both supports and extends traditional theological categories and vocabularies while retaining the cross-centered conviction of an evangelical gospel.

How God Became King

Author : N. T. Wright
ISBN : 9780062098733
Genre : Religion
File Size : 27. 30 MB
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Foundational: The four gospels come directly fromthe ancient church and are among the primary sourcesfor the church's teachings. Familiar: Since Christian worship services began, areading from the gospels has played a central role. Studied: For over two hundred years scholars havechallenged and defended the central claims of thegospels: miracles, historical accuracy, the divinity ofJesus, and more. But Forgotten: Still, leading Bible scholar N. T.Wright reveals shocking news: We have all forgottenwhat the four gospels are about. "Despite centuries of intense and heavy industryexpended on the study of all sorts of features of thegospels," Wright writes, "we have often managed tomiss the main thing that they, all four of them, aremost eager to tell us. What we need is not just a bitof fine-tuning, an adjustment here and there. We needa fundamental rethink about what the gospels aretrying to tell us." What Wright offers is an opportunity to confront thesepowerful texts afresh, as if we are encountering themfor the first time. How God Became King reveals thesurprising, unexpected, and shocking news of thegospels: this is the story of a new king, a new kind ofking, a king who has changed everything, and a kingwho invites us to be part of his new world.

Revelation

Author : Will Self
ISBN : 9780857861016
Genre : Bibles
File Size : 63. 8 MB
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The final book of the Bible, Revelation prophesies the ultimate judgement of mankind in a series of allegorical visions, grisly images and numerological predictions. According to these, empires will fall, the "Beast" will be destroyed and Christ will rule a new Jerusalem. With an introduction by Will Self.

What Are We Waiting For

Author : William H. Petersen
ISBN : 9780898690378
Genre : Religion
File Size : 79. 5 MB
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• Both practical and scholarly • Offers a new perspective on Advent, including resources Everyone knows that Advent is about waiting, but author William H. Petersen asks, What Are We Waiting For? In this book, he argues for a liturgical renewal in the life and mission of the Church by proposing an expanded, seven-week observance of Advent, taking its cue from the shape and substance of the Revised Common Lectionary, while noting (and critiquing) the Church’s complicity in the “Christmas culture.” Resources for a more authentic observance of Advent (other than a simple short four-week count-down to Christmas) are proposed and presented. With a renewed emphasis on eschatological formation into the Body of Christ during an expanded season, this counter-cultural approach gets beyond the secular and commercial Christmas preparation madness. Instead, it provides the Church (and the seasonally harried Christians who make up the Church) with the opportunity to enter each new liturgical year not simply as engaging a routine cycle, but with ever deeper understandings, broader horizons, and higher expectations in furthering our life and mission as reflection and agent of the Reign of God/Kingdom of Christ.

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