Loading presentation...

Present Remotely

Send the link below via email or IM

Copy

Present to your audience

Start remote presentation

  • Invited audience members will follow you as you navigate and present
  • People invited to a presentation do not need a Prezi account
  • This link expires 10 minutes after you close the presentation
  • A maximum of 30 users can follow your presentation
  • Learn more about this feature in our knowledge base article

Do you really want to delete this prezi?

Neither you, nor the coeditors you shared it with will be able to recover it again.

DeleteCancel

Make your likes visible on Facebook?

Connect your Facebook account to Prezi and let your likes appear on your timeline.
You can change this under Settings & Account at any time.

No, thanks

systematic theology lectures

No description
by

Lester's Dishont

on 16 June 2013

Comments (0)

Please log in to add your comment.

Report abuse

Transcript of systematic theology lectures

Systematic Theology
Lecture #1
Lecture #2
Lecture #3
Lecture #4
Lecture #5
Lecture #6
Lecture #7
Lecture #8
Lecture #10
Lecture #11
Lecture #12
Lecture #13
You are required to submit 2 written research papers. The first paper is the midterm paper and the second paper is the final paper.

I will walk through the first paper with you so that you know exactly what to do to produce a well-written theological paper.
 Please review the following documents posted in the Bb Course Material section.
There you will find three important files for this class.
The first is the course schedule, the second course requirements, and the third grading rubric.
Remember, if you have any question, I am at your service.
I hope that you come away with a good sense of what systematic theology is all about.
This concludes the first week lecture.
Your grading rubric is posted on the Blackboard.
(3). Submit the mid-term paper. It should be in the range of 8-10 pages double spaced. Use 12 pt font New Time Roman, and Turabian/Chicago citation style. You do not need a title page or the table of contents. Make sure your footnotes are relevant and clearly noted. It is due on March 18, 2013 and post it on Bb assignment section.
Midterm (1st) Paper
(1). Submit a topic and bibliography in the range of 7-12 books, articles, or journal papers in relation to your topic.
Your topic must be relevant to a systematic theological theme (if you do not know, choose one from the topics we are to discuss this semester).  
Remember, your topic and biblio is due January 28, 2013.
Midterm (1st) Paper
Please respond to the Bb question with an initial written exposition within the range of 150-200 words by Wednesday midnight.
And thereafter, during the week, you are required to respond to 2 of your peers’ work and make constructive comments. 
Please make your peer response no more than 100 words. The two responses need to be posted by no later than Sunday midnight.
Bb Discussion
The topic of the fourth section is the doctrine of God.

The discussion of God’s nature and work has been implicit in the first three topics, but in this topic, we examine the nature of God more explicitly.

In this section, we will examine different ways of interpreting God as we investigate the classical, Western, and non-Western views of God.

The Classical View (week 12), The Western View (week 13), Non-Western View (week 14)
Unit 4: The Doctrine of God
The topic of the second section is Christology.
A well known scholar, Thomas Torrance, said that Christology is at the heart of theology, for everything else depends on it.
The Christological discussion is as old as Christianity itself, and it is still in the process of unfolding as there are many different controversies associated with it.
Mainly, we are going to examine theological controversies surrounding Jesus’ nature, personhood, and ministry.

The Son Incarnate (week 5), the Personal Christ (week 6) , and the Priesthood and Prophethood of Christ (week 7).
Unit 2: Christology
Let’s review the course schedule first.
 This class is divided into 5 units, with 16 week subdivisions, and each unit covers a specific theological theme.
Course Schedule
Welcome to Systematic Theology 1.
I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday.
I am looking forward to working with you.
It is going to be an exciting semester (I hope) as we delve deep into the core issues of our Christian faith this semester. 
Before we begin, I would like to take time to go through class requirements to clarify a few things.
They are pretty straight forward, but here are the things that I am looking for.
For “the submission of required materials” all you need to do is to make sure that you submit your required works on time.
What I am looking for an “appropriate use of theological concepts” is a careful application of theological terms. When you introduce new terms or concepts, make sure you define them.
I will look for a clear thesis and organization. I will engage individually.
Your paper should provide a “reflection of the wide range of theological sources” as you include sources at least between 7-12 theological sources. You can refer to the Bible, but please do not rely solely on the Bible.
Your paper should include “theological application” that shows how your theological interpretation and claim can help Christian praxis at large.
The remaining three sections concerns with technical aspects of writing, that is, “writing style,” “clear of grammatical errors,” and citation.” These are self-explanatory.
Grading Rubric
I will provide you also with a grading rubric for your reference.
So let’s look at the grading rubrics.
8 different criteria:
“the submission of required materials”
“appropriate use of theological concepts”
“clear thesis and organization”
“reflection of the wide range of theological sources”
“theological application”
“writing style”
“clear of grammatical errors”
“citation”
Grading Rubric
Now we come to the final paper.
For this project, you are on your own!!!
Note that you DO NOT need to submit a theological topic, outline, or synopsis for the second paper for my approval.
Your paper should be in the range of 12-15 pages double spaced. Choose a topic from the following: The Kingdom of God, Eschatology, Pneumatology, Christology, or Christian Living (e.g., worship, liturgy, or sacraments).
Also, you may choose the discussion topics and research paper ideas I provided in the lectures.
 The paper is due on April, 27, 2013. Remember, the final grade has to be turned in to the central office by May 1, so do not miss this deadline!!!
Final Paper (2nd Paper)
Please review all lectures. They are powerpoint presentations.
Also read all required reading materials. They are noted in the Bb weekly assignment section.
Lectures, readings, and Bb discussions are all designed to help you write a good paper.
These are required and the grading of your paper reflects your engagement with these materials.
I will also provide you a few ideas of what you should write and how to approach the topic, so don’t miss out.
Lectures and Reading
(2). Submit an outline as well as your thesis statement and a brief synopsis of your paper of no greater than 500 words.  
This is due on Feb 18, 2013.
Midterm (1st) Paper
Those of you with extenuating circumstances are allowed to post after this date, but please try to meet the deadline in respect for other people in the class.
Do not engage with the same people all the time, but try to respond to everyone at least once. The goal is to be in dialogue with many different views as possible.
 The possible point for each week is 2 pts, and since you will have total of 15 discussion threads, doing the math, the total possible point is 30 pts.
Bb Discussion
Next, let us look at course requirements.
There are essentially three things to do. Bb discussion participation, midterm paper, and final paper.
Bb discussion (30 pts), midterm paper (30 pts), and the final paper (40 pts).
So, doing the math, grand total is 100 pts.
Course Requirement
The final unit reflect on the theological themes we have discussed during the semester.

You will be asked to post a meta-reflection at the end of the class.

Meta-reflection (week 15)
Closing Comments (week 16)
Unit 5: Meta-reflection
The topic of the third section is theological anthropology.
The discussion on anthropology is an integral part of systematic theological discussion.
It deals with the question of the origin of humanity, the nature of humanity, and the doctrine of sin and grace that helps us understand the God and humanity relationship, which spills over from the discussion of Christology.
If you can make a link with Christology to theological anthropology, then you are doing theology that is in line with contemporary theological movement.

The Origin of Humanity (week 8), Break (modular week 9), Human Nature (Sin and Grace 1) (week 10), Sin and Grace (week 11)
Unit 3: Theological Anthropology
If you look at the course schedule, the topic of the first unit is theological prolegomena.

For the first week, all you need to do is go through the Bb, check out its resources, post your introduction and post 2 peer responses.

For the remaining units, we will cover The Nature of Theology (week 2), The Source of Theology (week 3), and The Business of Theology (week 4).
Unit 1: Theological Prolegomena
Systematic Theology
Introduction




By aaron yom
What is your conclusion about theological method?
As you think about this, we conclude the week 2 lecture.
McGrath writes, “Since the time of the Enlightenment the question of prolegomena has become of especial importance. Before theology can explore the content of the Christian faith, it has to be shown how anyone can know anything about God in the first place. Talking about how we can know anything about God comes to be at least as important as discussing what we know about God. Increasing secularization in Europe and North America meant that theologians could no longer assume that their audiences would have any sympathy with the Christian faith.” (McGrath, 111).
The word “theology” broadly refers to the study of God. This means that theologian is a person who speaks of God, who knows God, and who searches for the knowledge and experience of God.
The word “systematic” denotes the way in which theology ought to function, that is, to follow a detailed plan of action in order to achieve a certain goal.
The personal approach to theology is powered by pneumatological sensibility, a Spirit-inspired intuition that integrates given information into the fabric of our intellectual development in such a way that our thought process does not strictly follow the formal logic, but rather, connects God, humanity, and the world seen through “the eyes of the heart.” 
This intensively personal act depends upon the evaluative faculty of the human subject.  
Such theological method leads us to the logic of community. The theological method is grounded on the different levels of social awareness which allow for the emergence of shareable focal visions. The logic of community sustains the theological method and constitutes the medium in which social relations, while not formally expressible, are nevertheless communicated through the common participation in the affected spheres of social consciousness.  
Accordingly, theological method stands on the dedication to the faith of community. This social commitment reveals internal convictions that sustain the norms of community, and at the same time, unveils a way of thinking which is not tied exclusively to a single community but which leads to trans-communal conversations.
The Personal Approach: Faithful and Communal Theology
In theology, ontologic makes a connection between two different forms of thought: dogmatic and experiential reflections. On the one hand, theology cannot avoid propositional and logical thinking.
The primary function of dogma then lies in its extension of abstractive processes of thought in that it sets up laws to impose rigid patterns of thought prescriptively upon the ecclesial praxis. However, although ecclesial dogma is effective in placing constraints on the excess of theological speculations, it nonetheless needs to be understood as an interpretative medium through which the church asserts its traditional habits authoritatively in the context of theological praxis.
 Practical theology is already deeply implicated in the actual lives of Christian individuals, families, and communities, and that thinking about God (theology) and our way of living (practices) should go hand in hand.
Ontological removes the gap arises in Christian life, where right belief (orthodoxy) and right practices (orthopraxy) do not always go hand in hand.
The Ontological Approach: The Correlation between Dogma and Praxis
Transcendental method: McGrath writes, “Karl Rahner drew attention to the importance of the basic human urge to transcend the limitations of human nature. Human beings are aware of a sense of being made for more than they now are, or more than they can ever hope to achieve by their own abilities. The Christian revelation supplies his ‘more,’ to which human experience points.” Therefore, human beings have the supernatural potency, that is, the ability to communicate and have relationship with God.
Five Theological Methods
Let’s now look at some of the examples of theological method.
Rudolph Bultmann (existential theology), Thomas F. Torrance (scientific theology), Gordon D. Kaufman (constructive theology), Wolfhart Pannenberg (public theology), Hans Küng (ecumenical theology), Karl Rahner (transcendental theology), David Tracy (method of correlation), Edward Schillebeeckx (Socio-Phenomenological method), and Stanley Grenz (integrative method).
Do you know any one of them? You should if you want to do theology!!!
Examples of Theological Method
Application: This has to do with the difference that the ideas of Christian theology make to the way in which Christians relate to each other, pray, worship, and exist within the world.
Four Categories of Systematic Theology
McGrath provides an additional explanation and divide systematic theology into four categories: foundations, developments, relationships, and applications.
Four Categories of Systematic Theology
In brief, systematic theology is a study of God done in a methodical way.
A common response to this question is that systematic theology is a topical study of theology (i.e. Christology).
Well, this is not wrong but there is more.
The topical study is the result of theology being systematic.
Let me unpack it from a different perspective.
 There are two telltale signs that the term systematic theology carries: one is “systematic” and the other “theology.”
Third, the outworking of imagination emphasizes the expandability and open-endedness of the theological method. The counterintuitive mode of thought, which bears the imprint of the imaginative semantic structures of prophets in the Bible, keeps our theological conceptions expansive and open toward the inexhaustible mystery of God.
Theological thinking needs to rely on a trans-logical grammar, a counterintuitive analogy beyond the power of our own positive (mechanical) analogy. This transcendental reference permits our minds to fall under the compulsion of the counterintuitive aspects of reality where theological science can be shaped in light of novel concepts. 
Imaginative analogy cannot but be provisionally constructed, all the while serving as a theoretical guide to inquiry, ready to shift and transform perspectives as afforded by the emergence of new concepts. As such, it is appropriate to consider theological concepts as an evaluative hypothesis that is revisable and open to correction by trans-logical inferences.
Furthermore, because of the open relations created by the counterintuitive engagement with the world, imagination serves to transform not only the center of action, but also its fringes that may occur through a mutual interaction between them.
In sum, the interaction between ontological, personal, and imaginative theology forms the triadic structure of theological method.
The Imagination and Theological Method
Let me give you my own conclusion about theological method.
This is the result of my research.
My thesis is that theological method must be grounded on the interaction between ontological, personal and imaginative dimensions of theology.
This is a difficult subject to digest, so do not worry if you do not fully understand the context and content of my argument.
Conclusive Comments on Theological Method
Which method is most appealing to your theological context?
Can you think of any other methods?
What would be the evangelical method?
These questions are the most pressing issues in theology today.
Question to consider
Integrative Method: Grenz writes, “In summary,…we must keep in proper balance the norms of kerygma, heritage, and culture. “‘Community’ is important as an integrative motif for theology not only because it fits with contemporary thinking, but more importantly because it is central to the message of the Bible. From the narratives of the primordial garden which open the curtain on the biblical story to the vision of white-robed multitudes inhabiting the new earth with which it concludes, the drama of the Scriptures speaks of community.”
Five Theological Methods
Constructive method: Gordon Kaufmann contends that the notion of God is a construct of the human imagination. Therefore, imagination takes the center stage as the prime driver of his theological method. In short, Kaufmann believes that the task of theology is to construct the image/symbol of God through our constructive imagination. The roots of this insight are found in the philosophy of Kant.
Kaufmann relies on Kant’s fundamental insight that knowing is an active and not a passive enterprise. This means that we should not treat our concepts as though they have a divine origin; rather, we should recognize that the image of God is our own imaginative creation. Since the reality of God is not available for our inspection, we are dependent on its representative symbols—that is, something which “is put together by the mind.” Therefore, theology is primarily understood as the cognitive exercise.
Thus, Kaufmann and Torrance is in disagreement here.
Five Theological Methods
Scientific method: The fundamental assertion on which Torrance stands is that all genuine human knowledge depends upon the human mind’s ability to be conformed to the real object. In theo-philosophical terms, this is denoted as critical realism.
For this reason, Torrance asserts that theology is in the business of interpreting reality critically and faithfully on its own terms. Thus, he calls for the locating of authority not in the subject but in the object itself. Standing on this conviction, Torrance redefines theological epistemology, method, and the nature of truth and logic from a scientific perspective.
In the end, he concludes that the proper task of theology is to be scientific—i.e. to be unbiased and objective in our examination and interpretation of all reality, so that our understanding of the reality of God is put to the test for the purpose of distinguishing knowledge of God from knowledge of ourselves. He is trying to avoid subjectivism.
Five Theological Methods
Let me briefly explain each of these models.
Existential method: Bultmann made a distinction between Historie and Geschichte, which is in essence two different methods of approach to history—the former seeing the history in light of the strict cause-and-effect relationship, and the latter interpreting history in terms of “how things appear to us”—Bultmann was able to differentiate between the meaning of an actual fact and an apparent event.
What this view entailed is the belief that the mythical depictions of the Bible belong to Geschichte (faith event), not Historie (fact). Because God’s act cannot be located in historical situations, Bultmann’s theology co-operated with existential philosophy in order to promote a new self-existence through so-called “faith-encounter” with the transcendent, which in turn, leads to the separation of eternity and temporality.
Simply put, Bultmann reinterpreted the biblical events by the use of existential philosophy. Barth accuses Bultmann’s demythologized theology as nothing more than a mere euphemism for anthropological hermeneutics.
Five Theological Methods
Theological prolegomena thus is required to identify at least the following four things:
Condition: What is your faith background? What is your theological agenda? For what cause are you theologizing? Who is your audience?
Polemical grounds: What are you arguing for? What are you arguing against? What is at stake?
Objective: What is your objective? What is the ultimate purpose of your theology?
Method: What are the rules or patterns in doing theology? What are the theological procedures? How do theological principles condition the activity of theology?
Theological Prolegomena
Next question of theology is, What is the importance of theological prolegomena?
Theological Method
Relationships: This considers the way in which Christian ideas relate to each other.
Four Categories of Systematic Theology
Development: This concerns the ways in which these ideas have emerged over time.
Four Categories of Systematic Theology
Foundations: This relates to identifying the sources on which these ideas are based, and how they relate to each other.
Four Categories of Systematic Theology
This week, we are going to take a look at the nature and method of theology.
But first, what is “systematic theology”?
The Definition
By Aaron Yom
Unit 1 (week 2): The Nature and Method of Theology
As you can see, there is tension between the use of these four sources.
How do we cope with this tension?
In the analysis of modern mathematics, Euclidean geometry, which was thought to be an epitome of human rationality, the internally consistent system of logic to which all other systems can be referenced, was proven to be indeterminate and inconsistent (it was proven by a guy named Godel).
It meant that rational exercises are not necessarily infallible. Rather, it is incomplete, undecidable, and inconsistent.
In this context, we turn to the final source, experience!!!
What is wrong with rationalist claims?
What is “tradition”?
Theology’s final source lies in the thought-forms of contemporary culture. Theology entails reflecting on Christian faith commitment in the world in which the church is called to live as the people of God.  
If theology is to be truly systematic and meaningful, theologians must take into consideration the discoveries and insights of the various disciplines of human learning and seek to show the relevance of Christian faith for the human quest for truth.  
We must pay attention to the forces that shape identity in culture. We must listen intently to the ways in which our culture seeks to express the human drive toward identity-in-community.
Culture (experience and reason)
In my opinion, experience is something which requires to be interpreted (see Van Huyssteein, “The Shape of Rationality).
“According to this approach, Christian theology provides a framework within which the ambiguities of experience may be interpreted.
Theology aims to interpret experience. Experience is seen as something which is to be interpreted, rather than something which is itself capable of interpreting.” (McGrath, 149).
Experience in the contemporary world
Schleiermacher said, “Yes.”
Schleiermacher’s proposal : Schleiermacher argued that a common feature of human experience was “the feeling of absolute dependence.”
The father of theology and experience
Could experience provide a foundational resource for Christian theology?
In a broad sense, it means “an accumulated body of knowledge, arising through first-hand encounter with life.” (McGrath, 145).
Experience
What is experience?
For an example of the contemporary argument on the clash of scripture and tradition, read George Lindbeck’s The Doctrine of Nature and Kevin Vanhoozer’s The Doctrine of Drama. This is the difference between George Lindbeck’s cognitive-linguistic approach (tradition) and Kevin Vanhoozer’s canonical-linguistic approach (scripture).
 Who is right? What is at stake? It can be a good topic for the paper.
The clash of scripture and tradition
No. If theology deals only with Scripture, it is called biblical theology. Systematic theology is biblical, and at the same time, it does more than biblical theology.
This leads to the next theological source, tradition!!!
Is Scripture sufficient for systematic theology?
It provides normativity for systematic theology. Scriptural narrative is the final authority over any framework of conceptualities which it may generate.
It provides multiple interpretative frameworks for systematic theology (e.g., apocalyptic, prophetic, or poetic).  
It provides the specific themes for systematic theology (e.g., incarnation and Trinity). It helps to articulate connections among various concepts in the Scripture.
Systematic theology and Scripture
What does Scripture provide for the development of systematic theology?
What is the most prominent feature of Scripture?
Broadly speaking, Scripture and the Word of God go hand in hand. So let’s look at the definition of the Word of God.
According to McGrath, there are three broad meanings attached to the term “Word of God.”
Jesus Christ: The phrase is used to refer to Jesus Christ as the Word of God made flesh (John 1; 14).
Kerygma: The term is also used to refer to “the gospel of Christ” or the “message or proclamation about Jesus.”
Revelation: The term refers to the revelation of God’s salvific act in history.
Word of God
From a theological perspective, Scripture is properly recognized as the Word of God depicted in the writings of the Old Testament and New Testaments.
Scripture
To note, McGrath’s division of four sources is not original. In 18th century, John Wesley has already mentioned what we call Wesleyan quadrilateral.
However, over the years, the understanding of each of these categories has changed and McGrath taking into account those shifts in the meaning, he properly re-contextualizes them for the 21th century readers, which means you!!!
So, remember to use your theological terms accurately and properly contextualized.
This week, we are going to examine the source of theology. I will use McGrath and Grenz as the starting point for our discussion.
Let’s first take a look at McGrath’s four categories of theological source: Scripture, tradition, reason, and experience.
Do you agree with Grenz’s proposal?
What are his weaknesses? What are his strength?
Think about these questions as we conclude this week’s lecture!!!
Question
“In summary, we must keep in proper balance the norms of kerygma, heritage, and culture. Although we can discuss them in isolation from each other, within the context of though we can discuss them in isolation from each other, within the context of the theological enterprise the three are interrelated. As theologians we express the faith of the people of God by looking to the kerygma, the heritage of the church, and the contemporary cultural situation of the faith community. Our task is to articulate the biblical faith in continuity with the theological heritage of the church and through various cultural or philosophic forms in such a way that the message of the Bible and the faith of the one people of God comes to understanding in the present. “ (Grenz, 20).
Grenz’s summary
The inherited tradition remains significant for theologians today. Certain past formulations carry special significance, in that they have withstood the test of time.  
We engage in the second-order task known as theology as members of a community of faith that spans the centuries.
Of course, past creeds and confessions of faith are not binding in and of themselves. They must be tested by the Scriptures and by their applicability to our cultural situation.
Heritage (e.g., tradition)
The primary norm for theology is the biblical message. Because faith is our response to the God who encounters us in his historical self-disclosure, our theology must take seriously the good news as proclaimed within the context of the ancient cultures.  
The narratives of the early community as inscripturated in the Bible enjoy what we may call a “regulative” function.  
For this reason, theologians explore, order, and systematize these symbols and concepts into a unified whole — a conceptual framework — for the sake of the community of faith which they serve.
Kerygma (e.g., the Word of God)
Grenz provides us with a possible solution.
Grenz’s Threefold Norm of Theology: kerygma, heritage, and culture.
Conclusion
The principal objection to this theory is given by Ludwig Feuerbach.“If feeling is the essential instrumentality or organ of religion, then God’s nature is nothing other than an expression of the nature of feeling.” (McGrath, 151)
In other words, human experience might be nothing other than experience of ourselves, rather than of God.
Experience
The consequence of the rise of reason is the demise of God’s view. 
Modern rationalists have claimed that we cannot see God from God’s own viewpoint but only through our own lens, purporting to say that we can never transcend who we are.
This view opposes classical theistic view that theology needs to transcend our corruptibility and see the world from the perspective of God from which all sources of theology derive.
God’s view vs. human view
Next, we turn to the third source, reason!!!
The basic presupposition of Enlightenment rationalism is that human reason is perfectly capable of telling us everything we need to know about the world, ourselves, and God (if there is one).
They wanted to emphasize the superiority of reason.
Reason
There are broadly three types of traditions.
Biblical tradition – A specific tradition found in the Bible. As an example, there is a difference between the historical Jesus tradition and the exalted Christ tradition.
Ecclesial tradition – This is the inherited tradition preserved by the church. We have a variety of ecclesial traditions (e.g., denominational).  
Cultural tradition – Theology is interpreted within the context of culture.
Three types of traditions
McGrath writes, “‘Tradition’ is here understood as a living and active process of passing on the Christian faith, rather than as a static source of revelation, independent of Scripture.” (McGrath, 138).
What is he saying? To simplify it, tradition is a specific context in which theological claims are made.
Tradition
It is narrative.
Narrative is the main literary type found in Scripture.  
Narrative invites us to reflect upon a story – a vivid, memorable account of something that actually happened (such as the story of Jesus), or that may be treated as if it really happened (such as the parables of Jesus).
Narrative affirms that God meets us in history, and speaks to us as one who has been involved in history.  
The narrative structure of Scripture allows the reader to see the story from God’s point of view.
Narrative nature of Scripture
What is scripture? How should we define it?
Scripture
By Aaron Yom
The Source of Theology
Based on what we have seen, I summarize the business of theology.
Theology has a number of functions.
Among these are clarification, integration, and correction.
Today, we are going to look at the business of theology.
 Before we clarify the business of theology, let us define various types of theology.
Referring to McGrath, we have five different types of theology: biblical, philosophical, pastoral, historical, and spiritual theology.
We are ready now to move to discussing the core theological theme of Christianity: Christology.
This concludes this week’s lecture, hurray!!!
3. Correction
Theology serves as a corrective to departures from the truth. By articulating as clearly as possible the various truths of the Christian faith, it indirectly seeks to redress imbalances or errors that may have occurred. It is essential for the health of Christian faith to point away from such deviations.  
There are three ways to make corrections, which are tied to the theory of truth. 
First, truth is connected to performance (praxis). The pragmatic notion of truth is predicated on the assumption that truth is verified and confirmed by the results of putting concepts into practice. Thus, to seek after truth is to embody it in one’s life and activity. Second, truth is related to the values and structures of natural and social context (coherence). In other words, truth requires a proper fit of elements within a specific environment and it involves something more than simple logical consistency, such as values and beliefs. Third, truth is fundamentally the conformity of the interpretation to the actuality of the object in question (correspondence). Due to the interpreter’s persistent effort to conform to the object, interpretation will eventually converge on a set of beliefs that accurately correspond to the world as it objectively is.
Integration.
 Theology should help bring all methods, sources, and functions together by integrating one truth with another. Theology is not only a matter of clarification of individual doctrines but also the demonstration of how these fit into a total pattern. In the teaching of theology there is the continuing effort to show how one part relates to another.
 The purpose of another discipline, philosophy, has sometimes been described as “to see reality and to see it whole.” This applies to theology, in which reality has not only been seen but also experienced, and therefore may be declared in its totality.
Do you agree with Pieper’s four categorization of pastoral theology?
Is any one particular theme more important than others?

Next, there is historical theology. When is it going to end???
Questions to consider
Read the article # 1 and learn about the aptitudes of pastor.
The theological aptitude is a spiritual aptitude that is to say, an aptitude which in every case presupposes, besides natural gifts, personal faith in Christ.
The theological aptitude includes the ability of the theologian to confine himself in his teaching entirely to God’s Word.
 Another theological skill is the ability to teach the whole Word of God, the entire truth of Scripture.
 Again, only he is a fit minister of the church who is able to refute false teachers.
The Aptitudes of Pastor
Which type are you?
What is the importance of philosophy in the current context?
In the age of postmodernism?

Let’s move on to pastoral theology.
Questions to Consider
McGrath writes, “Theology is an intellectual discipline in its own right, concerned with many of the questions that have intrigued humanity from the dawn of history. Is there a God.? What is God like? Why are we here.? Questions such as this are asked outside the Christian community, as well as within it. So how do these conversations relate to one another.? How do Christian discussions of the nature of God relate to those within the western philosophical tradition.? Is there a common ground.? Philosophical theology is partly concerned with what might be called ‘finding the common ground” between Christian faith and other areas of intellectual activity.” (McGrath, 107).
Philosophical Theology
Biblical theology is grounded on biblical exegesis more so than any other sources.  
In the past, particularly for the development of New Testament theology, there has been an intense debate concerning the separation of exegesis and systematic theology.
18th century German scholar Johann Philip Gabler called for a biblical theology, “pure and unmixed with foreign elements” (Gabler, 142), that would provide systematic theology with the universal and unchanging truths of Scripture.
He distinguished between biblical theology, which is historical in origin, and systematic theology, which is didactic in nature, “teaching what each theologian philosophises rationally about divine things, according to the measure of his ability or of the times, age, place, sect, school, and other similar factors” (Gabler, 137).
Thereafter, biblical theology and systematic theology became opposing forces in Christianity. Biblical theology relied largely on grammatical, linguistic, and historical studies whereas systematic theology on philosophical and dogmatic science.
Biblical Theology
In sum, the business of theology is to clarify, integrate, and correct in a responsible matter to not only support the community of believers in this generation, but also to extend its discovery into other areas of disciplines so that it can help increase the possibility of the three categories of God, humanity, and the world to interact with one another without a gap.
Conclusion
Clarification
 It is important to set forth as clearly as possible what it is that the Christian community affirms. This is primarily for the benefit of persons in the community who need instruction in the faith. Often there is lack of understanding in various doctrinal areas. Participation in Christian experience is, of course, the primary thing, but this does not automatically bring about full understanding.
 It is a sad fact that many Christians are quite unclear about what they believe. They need—and often want—instruction about the contents of the faith. They are calling out for more adequate teaching. This is the task that theology is called to perform.
Closing Remarks
What are some of spiritual theology have you seen in the contemporary era?
Does Pentecostal theology fall under this categorization? (hint: you know that the answer is in the question itself). Why?
Questions to Consider
The term “spirituality” has gained wide acceptance in the recent past as the preferred way of referring to aspects of the devotional practices of a religion, and especially the interior individual experiences of believers.
This point is made clearly by Thomas Merton , a Trappist monk who had a major influence on modern western spirituality during the late twentieth century. Merton aflirms that there is a close link between theoiogy and spirituality, which must be affirmed and recognized for the mutual good of each.  
Contemplation, far from being opposed to theology, is in fact the normal perfection of theology. We must not separate intellectual study of divinely revealed truth and contemplative experience of that truth as if they could never have anything to do with one another. On the contrary, they are simply two aspects of the same thing. Dogmatic and mystical theology, or theology and “spirituality,” are not to be set in mutually exclusive categories, as if mysticism were for saintly women and theological study were for practical but, alas, unsaintly men. This fallacious division perhaps explains much that is actually lacking in both theology and spirituality. But the two belong together, Unless they are united there is no fervor, no life and no spiritual value in theology; no substance. No meaning and no sure orientation in the contemplative life.  
Merton thus forges a link between the two disciplines, and indicates that their artificial separation is to their mutual impoverishment.
Spiritual Theology
Theology has a history. This insight is too easily overlooked, especially by those of a more philosophical inclination. Christian theology can be regarded as an attempt to make sense of the foundational resources of faith in the light of what each day and age regards as first-rate methods. This means that local circumstances have a major impact upon theological formulations.  
That certain ideas came into being under very definite circumstances; and that these ideas require to be tested and validated over time – a process often referred to as “reception.”  
That theological development is not irreversible; theological formulations of the past which are seen to be inadequate or unhelpful may be corrected.
 It is for such reasons that the present volume aims to provide its readers with the maximum amount of historical background to contemporary issues. All too often, theological issues are conducted as if the debate began yesterday. An understanding of how we got to be where we are is essential to theology.

Lastly, and yes, lastly, we have spiritual theology.
Historical Theology
It is here seen as offering models for transformative action, rather than purely theoretical reflection. McGrath says that “there is a strongly pastoral dimension to Christianity” (McGrath, 109).
Pastoral Theology
Hans Frei said that there are four types of theology:
First, theology is primarily a search for principles. It gives priority to academic theology as a specialized discipline. It constructs theology from metaphysical concepts apart from experience—that is, it is generally abstract objective and specific constructs must be compatible with universal.
Second, theology is primarily anthropological in nature. It depends on phenomenology, or personal descriptive observation. It is always realistic and scientific where the external and internal descriptions of reality merge. Since theology is compatibility in terms of experience, it is determined by liturgy.
Third, theology & philosophy are autonomous and theology is primarily biblical reflection. Therefore, academic theology has no priority in the development of systematic theology. Theology is personal and communal and it is secondary to first-order faith statements.
Fourth, theology is entirely unrelated to philosophy. Theology is primarily a meditative exercise. So the priority is given to self-reflection over academia. Theology is performative and determined by doxology.
4 types of Philosophical Theology
It was his program of demythologization that denied some of the biblical truth, e.g., resurrection, and considered them as “pre-scientific” and “primitive” concepts that need to be reinterpreted in light of human existential conditions.
For more details, read Bultmann’s book, “Myth and Kerygma.”
Next, we turn to philosophical theology.
Rudolph Bultmann’s Demythologization
Rudolph Bultmann is one of the key 20th century theologians, who has in my opinion, successfully accomplished the task of integrating theology, philosophy, and Scriptures.
Myers lists Bultmann’s overall contributions: (1) interpretative nature of theology, (2) existential theology, (3) the inseparable connection between biblical and theological studies, (4) faith involving the whole of a person, and (5) emphasis on the theological relevance to the modern world.
But his theological approach created a lot of problems.
What was the problem with Bultmann’s integrative method?




See Benjamin Myers, “Faith as Self-Understanding: Towards a Post-Barthian Appreciation of Rudolf Bultmann,” International Journal of Systematic Theology 10/1 (2008): 21-35.
Rudolph Bultmann
Is there any way we can bring together biblical scholarship, systematic theology, and philosophy, into a unified whole?
Who are some of the theologians you know that have accomplished this task?
Has this approach always been healthy?
Think about these things, as you move to the next slide.
Questions on Biblical Theology
The Business of Theology
Aaron Yom
The homoousion accomplishes three things.
No subordination (against Arianism)
No disjointed natures (against dualism)
It becomes the foundational theory for trinitarian theology, for the Spirit’s divinity is also substantiated by the argument of consubstantiality.
As you can see, during the few centuries after Jesus’ ascension, the key point of contention of Christology has been his dual nature, one divine and other human.
What is the proper way to understand it?
The confusion is all the more amplified by the introduction of so called “heretical” hypotheses. Here are the list I have.
The controversies surrounding the Son’s incarnation is indeed not new at all.
Let’s us examine some of these controversies in the history of Christianity.
There are many other issues associated with the concept of the Son incarnate, but I hope this presentation has enlightened your view on this topic.
This concludes this week’s lecture.
Let me end with a clarification of what the Son incarnate means. Grenz succinctly summarizes the doctrine of the Incarnation.

“Jesus combines in one person a divine and a human nature. The incarnation, understood as a historical event (perhaps occurring through the virginal conception), was the means whereby the union of these two natures was effected. This act was the work of the second person of the Trinity, the Logos. This act resulted in a ‘hypostatic union’ of deity and humanity in Jesus, that is, one in which the personal center of the earthly life was the eternal Son, with the human nature existing only through its union with the Logos” (Grenz, 308).
Conclusion
Questions to Consider (This would be a good topic for your paper).
Can you summarize Coffey’s contribution to Christology?
Why is his contribution important to today’s theological discussions?
Coffey’s theory is not without criticism. What are some of the criticisms he had for this type of approach? What is at stake?
Do you agree with his method and conclusion?
Coffey’s Model
The natural consequence of the supernatural potency in the human nature is that “the divine nature must communicate to the human nature whatever the latter requires for its integrity as a human nature; and beyond this, the divine nature can communicate to the human nature whatever divine realities God wills to communicate provided only they are commensurate with human nature, that is, can be received in a human nature without violating its integrity” (Coffey, 420).
And the agency of this mutual communication is the Holy Spirit. Thus, for Coffey, the Spirit is the mutual love between the Father and the Son, and this Spirit makes possible for Christ to have a single theandric nature as the human nature is capable by the Holy Spirit of attaining the Logos not only through its operations but also through its being.
Coffey’s Model
In Coffey’s own examination, the meaning of God becoming man in Jesus Christ pivots on the justification of how Jesus’ human operation is divine, and vice versa, that is, the claim of the Son’s human operation is neither excluded from his divine operation, nor is his divine operation excluded from his human operation.
Coffey’s Model
Coffey’s answer to this problem is the addition of the return model to the procession model. For Coffey, in the immanent Trinity, the Holy Spirit is the Father’s love for Jesus and Jesus’ answering love for the Father, thereby denoting twofold movement ad extra (procession) and ad intra (return) in the trinitarian relations, respectively.
Coffey’s Model
Second, the event of the Son incarnate is a trinitarian event. It involves not only the Father and the Son, but also the Holy Spirit. Coffey’s reason for adopting this approach is self-explanatory in his adoption of Augustine’s mutual love theory.
Coffey’s Model
Coffey begins with 2 assumptions.
First, there is an ontological priority or irreversibility.
It is a fancy term, but simply what this means is that what happens in his inner life takes precedence over what God has done in the world.
For instance, ontologically, the Son is from the Father, not vice versa.
Coffey’s Model
Drawing upon Augustine’s mutual love model (I hope you know what this is, if not read McGrath), Coffey presents a bestowal model, and through this model, Coffey not only unpacks the trinitarian relations of the Godhead, but also the God-man nature of the Son.
Coffey’s Model
How is the hypostatic union (the union of two natures) possible?
How can we find his divinity and humanity present in his historical life?
More Questions
With the help of the homoousion (and other theological concepts such as procession), the doctrine of the Incarnation is clarified.
With this in mind, scholars had to think more about hypostatic union of Jesus (the bonding of God and humanity in Jesus Christ).
Homoousion
Unlike its cousin (homoiousios), this term highlights the nature of Jesus as “of the same substance” to the Father. The first part “homo” means “same” and the second part “ousios” means “essence” or “nature.” In Latin, homoousios is replaced with the term “consubstantiality.”
Orthodox Defense against Heresy
For early patristic scholars, so called the Fathers of Christianity, the main task of theology is the defending orthodox belief against heretical claims.
A set of orthodox theological statements were issued and become the foundation of Christian doctrines.
As a prime example is the doctrine of homoousion by Athanasius.
Single Nature Theory
 
Eutychian (Monophysite) Error
Eutyches declared that Jesus was “one person” with the idea that our Lord possessed only “one nature” (hence, “monophysitism”).
 
Ebionism
The key themes that define the divinity of Jesus such as his virgin birth have been denied at the expense of highlighting Jesus’ earthly ministry as the chosen one from God. Therefore, the Ebionists claimed that Jesus is the highest form of humanity, but nevertheless, not God.

Docetism
The denial of the humanity of Jesus rests on the belief that Jesus is a mere phantom (dokesis), and the Word made flesh is deemed a non-literal metaphor. Therefore, Jesus is seen only as God though appeared to be human.
Heretical Hypotheses
What’s at stake?
The Alexandrians ran the risk of losing the portrait of Jesus in Luke’s gospel as one who in his youth “advanced in wisdom and age and favor before God and man” (Lk 2:52). The Antiochenes ran the risk of losing the portrait of Jesus as one who was born of a virgin, proclaimed himself Lord of the Sabbath, and was raised from the dead.
Alexandrian vs Antiochene
The Alexandrians suggested that the two natures, humanity and divinity, are not so contradictory so as to make impossible their union in one person.
They placed emphasis on the divinity of Christ. They looked for allegorical meaning (spiritual meaning) of the Bible.
The Antiochenes, on the other hand, maintained that these two substances are so distinct that no essential unity could be possible between them.
They placed emphasis on the humanity of Christ. They looked for literal interpretation of Scripture.
Christological Controversies
How would you defend against these views?
Is our classical creedal statement sufficient to defend these claims?
Theological Task
Although the doctrine of the Incarnation is a pivotal creed for Christians around the world, it has been enveloped by many different types of controversies.
Let’s proceed to examine some of the issues surrounding the concept of the Word made flesh.
We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, begotten of the Father [the only-begotten; that is, of the essence of the Father, God of God], Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father;
By whom all things were made [both in heaven and on earth];
Who for us men, and for our salvation, came down and was incarnate and was made man;
He suffered, and the third day he rose again, ascended into heaven;
From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
And in the Holy Ghost.
Nicene Creed (315 AD)
Today, I would like to introduce a controversial theological topic, the doctrine of the Incarnation.
 The doctrine of the Incarnation is “etched in stone” and declared by the Nicene Creed (325 AD).
Aaron Yom
The Son incarnate
The single theandric nature is supported by the fact that Christ was contained “within the being and operation of the divine Word in the humanity, the human nature, of Jesus,” which is the point already provided by Karl Rahner (Coffey, 410).
In referring to Rahner’s work, Coffey notes that if the divine Word subsists in the human nature of Christ, then we have to recognize that there is a potentiality in the human nature that could actualized the divine Word.
Following Rahner, Coffey believes that the human nature has the potentiality to attain the divine nature. The implication of this is that the human nature has a supernatural potency, “one that would allow a human nature, God so willing, to be borne by grace beyond its natural limits to an absolute fulfillment” (Coffey, 413).
Coffey’s Model
In this regard, for Coffey, the hypostatic union must reveal the fact that the human nature of Christ subsists in the hypostasis of the divine Word, and inversely that the divine Word subsists in the human nature.
Arguing against Thomas Aquinas, Coffey notes that Christ does not have two natures, one divine and one human; rather, he has a single nature, that is, theandric.
Coffey’s Model
Using this line of trinitarian thought, Coffey tackles the second issue of the unity of Jesus’ divine and human nature.
Coffey’s Model
Therefore, there is a correspondence between God in eternity and God in history. There is the generation in the inner life (begetting), and there is birth in history (Virgin Birth), all through the Holy Spirit.
Coffey’s Model
Reflective of the immanent Trinity, in the economic Trinity (God in history), during the birth, life, and ministry of Jesus on earth, he received the love from the Father, and finally, on the cross, he returned the love to the Father.
Coffey’s Model
How do we tackle the contradiction between biblical and theological viewpoints?
Coffey’s Model
The epistemological order is NOT the same as the ontological order; rather it is other way around (we cannot know the Father except through the Son).
In other words, what we know (remember this is different from talking about who God is) begins with what God has revealed to us. We cannot penetrate into the inner life of God because of our creatureliness.
Thus, there is the difference between the created and uncreated.
Coffey’s Model
The first issue he tackles is related to the seemingly contradictory event between the biblical and immanent Trinity (inner life of God).
Coffey states that in the former the Father bestows the Spirit in a creative act that brings Jesus into being as the Son of God (e.g., Luke 1), while in the latter the Father generates the Son on whom he then bestows the Holy Spirit (procession model).
Coffey’s Model
These questions were addressed by many scholars but in my opinion David Coffey’s model takes the cake. Read article #2 please.
Let me comment and explain a few things about his article (yes, it is pretty difficult to read).
Coffey’s Model
The key ingredients of the hypostatic union, that is, the union of God-man nature of Jesus are the following.
Jesus is fully human.
Jesus is fully divine.
The two natures are in union (or communication) without confusion.
The Key Ingredients of the Hypostatic Union
Two Nature Theory

Nestorianism
This is so called an Eastern heresy. Nestorius claimed that Jesus was a God-bearing man. “Thereby he risked dividing Jesus into two separate persons” (Grenz, 296).

Adoptionism
Adoptionists claimed that Jesus had two exclusive natures, one divine and human. The Son is divine by nature and Jesus is human by adoption.

Apollinarian Error
Jesus’ humanity is marginalized as Jesus is believed to have no human rational mind, but only the divine Logos. The key stance is that the divine and human nature cannot be united as one.

Arianism
The Son was created by the Father and hence subordinate to the Father. Though he claimed that Jesus was not just any creature but perfect creature, Arius emphasized Jesus’ creatureliness at the expense of his divinity.
Heretical Hypotheses
John Hicks claims that the story of a divine being who descends to earth as a man is technically a myth and not a straightforward history.
Maurice Wiles argues that the doctrine of the Incarnation should be abandoned because the concept is not literal but metaphorical.
Don Cupitt claims that the doctrine of the Incarnation is an archaic concept that marginalizes the transcendence of God, for nothing should represent God in eternity with God in temporality.
Contemporary Crisis
Actually, this is one of my favorite theological topics.
As a result, personally, I spent a lot of time learning about the subject, and I hope you do that too!!!
The study of the personal Christ occupies a great deal of my research and I have presented some of my interpretation of this concept in my doctoral dissertation as well.
This concludes this week’s lecture.
What is the significance of the “personalized” approach to Christology?
Could this approach be unorthodox?
Is there any other benefits of doing theology personally?
Does the personal way of doing theology in line with postmodern thoughts?
Question to Consider
Therefore, through the Word made flesh and the Spirit poured upon all flesh, the very language of God coming to us through the medium of human language, we can now establish our personal communion and communication with God.
The sharing of Christ’s language between God and humanity under the guidance of the Spirit is primarily based on trust. In the early stages of Christianity, the claim of the Son as the exalted Christ was more like a pledge of allegiance than a dogmatic declaration.
 The loyalty to the Word of God or the biblical narrative of God’s affecting the history of the world in and through the two hands of God, the Son and the Spirit, has been the driving force of the church that keeps alive the relationship between the Son and his disciples.
Christ and the Language of God
Jesus’ empathy toward the common people reveals not only the character of Jesus but also the character of the very essence of God, the loving relationality of the divine nature.
 In this respect, the obligation of the followers of the way of Christ is none other than to develop an empathetic relationship between the self, neighbors, and God.
 For this reason, Christology needs to be related to our basic level of experience and worship, in which we encounter Son’s empathy and compassion in the Spirit.
Empathy and Sympathy
Christian identity is therefore shaped by doing the work of Christ by the power of the Spirit.
To be a disciple of Christ is to participate in the Way of Christ.
To put on the mantle of Christ (Rom. 13:13-14) is to put the example of Jesus into concrete practice.
The Importance of Theological Praxis
The correlation between Jesus and us can be sustained not only from the hearing of God’s Word, but more importantly, in the application and performance of the Word through the Spirit in our daily life.
This alignment is possible because, by the indwelling of Christ’s Spirit, our knowledge of Christ deepens as the Spirit not only heightens our spiritual senses to be in line with the senses of Christ but also rehabilitates the fallibility of human ego so that the human image is restored into the likeness of Christ through the ongoing process of conversion and sanctification in the affective, intellectual, social, and moral dimensions of human life.
 Of signal importance of this restoration is that spiritual empowerment propels his followers to carry on the work of Jesus.
Spiritual Empowerment
This personal Christ can be detected in the Bible.
The disciples interacted with Jesus on the personal level as they walked, talked, dined, and lived with him as his close companions—the knowledge of God came not in a doctrinal format but in a mode of personal and dialogical activity.
Correlatively, as we dwell in the Word of God in the contemporary world, focal awareness (e.g., our commitment to Jesus Christ) is affirmed and the community of believers share together in this conviction to the Son and his mission.
Biblical Witness
We must do theology personally rather than impersonally.
Here, our basic concept of Christology is personally and faithfully correlated to the historical reality of Jesus.
On this level, the knowledge of Christ is obtained informally through our day-to-day worship by developing a personal relationship and faithful trust with the Son.
Doing Theology Personally
What do we do now?
It counters the claims of anthropomorphism and rationalism.
For modernists, “reason” rules.
Due to the human tendency to contrive things that are akin to their own image when speaking of God, we are not capable of seeing God for who God is independently of our corruption.  
Therefore, we must rely upon one true image, that is, the Son of God. The image of the Son helps us see the reality of God rationality and truthfully and not depend on subjectivism, emotionalism, and irrationism that cloud our judgment.
As a Counter to Impersonal Approach
In my opinion, there are more reasons to study the personal Christ.
The theological polemic on the personal Christ is essentially against two types of Christological reflection.
This is true due to the fact that the object of Christology is the person of Christ, and because of it, a mutual reciprocity between Jesus’ and our humanity is created in which God’s Word addresses us in human form and in a way which enables us to develop a personal response.
The Implication of Grenz’s Argument
“God’s purposes, however, stand in stark contrast to our present human experience: God did not create us for estrangement but for fellowship; not for death but for life; not for bondage but for freedom” (Grenz, 282).
“In raising him from the dead, God transformed Jesus’ earthly, bodily existence into the glorious, incorruptible state to which the early witnesses to the risen Christ gave testimony” (Grenz, 283).
Grenz’s Work on Humanness of Jesus
“To say that Jesus lived under the conditions of human existence means likewise that he underwent trials and faced temptations” (Grenz, 276).
“Jesus can sympathize with us as we struggle with the situations of life in a fallen world” (Grenz, 278).
Grenz’s Work on Humanness of Jesus
I am going to address these questions, but we are not going to explore uncommon topics of Jesus’ humanness in this lecture (perhaps in the Bb discussion).
But we will investigate the personalization of Jesus from a theological perspective.
 And I will point out the necessity of this study despite the fact that there is a lack of interest in the traditional circles of Christian community. 
Let’s look at first how Grenz’s unpacks Jesus’ humanness.
In the history of Christianity, Jesus’ humanness has been the hot topic for scholars around the world.
In many cases, due to the nature of the discussion often leading to non-orthodox discourses (e.g., Jesus’ psychology), Jesus’ humanness has been less explored than other themes such as the doctrine of the Incarnation.
The Lack of the Study of Jesus’ Humanness
The consideration of the personal Christ sustains a balance between the word, act, and being of Jesus in his person-in-the-world as well as a correlation between Jesus’ and our personal existence sustained by the power of the Spirit. There is a dual control in the discourse of the personal Christ, in which the exaltation of Christ (focal awareness) is brought to light as we become his humble servants (subsidiary component), while by the empowerment of the Spirit, we become the focal point when we are renewed and exalted by the encouragement of the Son who calls us his friend and family doing the same work that he has done.  
The dual control is seen in the personal act of the Son willing to be hidden behind our accomplishments, and at the same time, the Son becoming the point of our attention in the context of our worship as our Lord and Savior.
Conclusion
God’s Word must go out to the world (centrifugal force) so that it can bring together people worldwide (centripetal force ) under the umbrella of God’s love.
 In the dual control of the centrifugal and centripetal force of the Spirit, the two complementary concepts of the Word made flesh and the Spirit poured out on all flesh are united, raising our focal awareness of the gospel to carry it to the ends of the earth as commanded by Christ (Acts 1:8).
 Christ’s Word is to be kept not only within the sphere of Jerusalem, Samaria, or Judea, but is given to embrace them all, and at the same time, to move beyond them to include many nations worldwide.
 The trans-communal thinking is part of Christ’s given commission, which is conditioned by the trinitarian dynamics. Jurgen Moltmann states: ‘The kingdom of glory must be understood as the consummation of the Father’s creation, as the universal establishment of the Son’s liberation, and the fulfillment of the Spirit’s indwelling” (Moltmann, The Trinity and the Kingdom, 212).
Trans-Communal Relationship
Therefore, the understanding of Christ is formed and reformed not in isolation of but only in the context of community, because the Word of God inspired by the Spirit creates a mutual trust between God and his people.
 The Spirit-inspired text is the source of faith and language for Christian community as the appropriate medium of God’s continuing communication to humanity.
 For this reason, Christians throughout the ages have been emphasizing the need to place absolute loyalty to the Scripture (the Word of God) above all other texts.
Faith-ful Community
In the context of a spirit-filled assembly who are gathered together to pray, to share “bread and wine,” to counsel and encourage one another, to practice the gifts of the Spirit, and to baptize new believers in the name of Jesus, the Son incarnate can be deeply and personally understood and related.
 More importantly, through such communal transactions, Christ becomes the grammar of the people spoken through the breath of God, allowing us to dialogue with not only one another but also God so that everyone can have a share in the Word of God.
Communal Transaction and Christ
A multitude of illustrations are given in the Gospels that reveals the “heart” of Jesus—i.e. Jesus’ willingness to sacrifice his own life for the other (John 10:10), his desire to release people from distress (Luke 4:18-19), his compassionate statement concerning the common people stated as “the sheep without a shepherd” (Mark 6:34), his weeping for the dead (John 11:35) and Jerusalem (Matt. 23:37), and his heart deeply moved by the sick (Mat 14:14).
The Display of Humanness: Compassion
From his birth to death, he associated himself with a band of ordinary people, of whom he considered his family (Matt. 12:48-50).
His teaching, mission, and life were all geared toward making intimate connections with those who he had encountered during his ministry.
The hearers of Jesus’ teaching were able to relate to, at least tacitly and personally, what he was proclaiming, because he was one of them, going through the same type of life situations and speaking the same language.
 Even when Jesus was faced with complex religious inquiries, he unpacked them by referring to analogies and parables, speaking of the things above in terms of the ordinary things of this world, thereby creating a sympathetic understanding between who he was and what he stood for, the things from above, to those that he came to reconcile, the ones from below.
Biblical Witness
On the one hand, it counters the modernist claims of individualism and solipsism.
The error of modernism is that it imprisons Christology within the bounds of a self-justified fiat that impedes God’s continued questioning of not only our understanding of the Son but more importantly our own self-understanding.
One of the modernist assertions is that God is no longer “with us” (deism), but the universe is self-operating with its own power to survive.
The world God created is not abandoned to exist on its own; rather, it is continually depended on the communication of the divine Word in such a way that we can have a personal relationship with God.
 To be blinded by the self-will power of humanity that puts more emphasis on the autonomy of human nature than its reliance on God’s grace is to overshadow the salvific act of God in and through the Son. Modernism’s key word: freedom, self-referential, autonomy, individualism, rationalism, solipsism, and impersonalization.
As a Counter to Impersonal Approach
The study of personal Jesus cannot be marginalized for any reason, for it is imperative for us to examine the Son incarnate who is encountered in the context of the rudimentary level of daily life, on which our personal experience and cognition of him are inseparably combined together.
The Implication of Grenz’s Argument
What is at stake?

What would we lose if we neglect the humanness of Jesus?

Why is this topic important to theology today?
Question
Aaron Yom
The Personal Christ
Is imagination irrelevant?
Should we do away with the creative imagination?

I have provided the importance of theological imagination in the contemporary world. Read article #4.
This would be a good research topic: the nature and function of imagination in theology.
I am going to use my own paper on this topic to further layout the importance of the complementary mission (prophethood and priesthood) of Jesus. Please read article #3.
Jesus’ prophetic ministry signifies for us our duty to mediate and proclaim the vision of God to the world by the power of the Spirit who is the source of God’s creative and re-creative power.
The analogical (or complementary) method therefore propels us to weave the two threads of “revelation” (God’s eye-view) and “imagination” (human eye-view) or mediation (priesthood) and forthtelling (prophethood) into a single tapestry of theological science.
Conclusion
In the end, Jesus, led by the Spirit, embodied a new vision for the world and enacted that vision in a counterintuitive manner in order to call out (ecclesia) his people from the constraints of the existing paradigms.
 The rule of God’s kingdom decisively inaugurated in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus becomes a dynamic and open pattern within history, and through the outpouring of the Spirit, this pattern of Christ becomes a template for all creations to follow so that all things can be conformed to Christ’s image.
Translogic of Christ
The most salient feature of Jesus’ prophetic program, however, is his counterintuitive display of God’s vision.
Politically, Jesus neither focused on the overthrowing of the kingdoms on earth nor establishing the kingdom of David, as was expected by the Israelites, but on the inauguration of the kingdom of God, and proclaimed that the “rule” of God’s kingdom was in conflict with the “rule” governed by Satan and demonic powers (Luke 4:5,11:17-20).
 Socially, Jesus freely associated himself with the socially ostracized, such as prostitutes, lepers, widows, and tax collectors, not only defying but more importantly redefining the social code of the day, as in the case of the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37).
 Religiously, though Jesus preached the importance of upholding the religious law (e.g., Matt. 5:7), he frequently broke the law for the sake of helping the other (e.g., John 5:8-11; Mark 2:23-27). In other places, rather than punishing the sinner as he came to judge (John 5:22), Jesus openly forgave them (e.g., John 8:1-11).
 Super-naturally, Jesus healed the blind, leper, and paralytics, and all those illnesses that were thought to be impossible to be remedied during his time (and our time as well). More significantly, Jesus was raised from the dead three days after his burial. The resurrected Jesus was witnessed by his disciples who were themselves surprised and even doubtful of the event at first (John 20:24-29).
Counterintuitive Christ
For me, the imagination is quiet important to theology.
Theology cannot do away with translogic, and translogic cannot do away with imagination.
My argument in relation to Jesus’ ministry is that theological imagination is akin to the prophetic imagination.
Let’s look at this.
Torrance is arguing against modern liberalism.
E.g., German scholar Feuerbach said that “human beings have created the gods, who embody their own idealized conception of their aspirations, needs, and fears” (McGrath, 151). Simply put, religion and theology are the result of human imaginative ponderings.
Torrance thesis: theology needs to transcend our corruptibility and see the world from the perspective of God from which all sources of theology derive. We are not to imagine but to transcend our corrupted thinking.
Torrance’s Contentions
Do you agree with Torrance?
What is it that makes his proposal attractive and persuasive?
Let’s look at Torrance’s answer to this question.
Human beings are fallible and God is beyond the limits of our creaturely knowledge.
 Because of God’s self-entry into the creaturely realm manifested as the Word made flesh, God is now approachable by his creatures.
 Without God coming to us, we would never know God.
He is rejecting what we call natural theology. We will discuss more on this later in the year.
TF Torrance’s Claim: Unapproachable vs. Approachable
Question

What is the usefulness of translogic?
The thesis of this article is that in order to capture the full scope of Christology, we must include the translogical approach, the multi-dimensional rationality.
Thesis of the Article #3
Second, translogic points to the fact that theology opens up one conceptual system to another in order to make a transition to a wider conceptual system.
It often involves breaking free from the fetters of formalized thinking and moving into the realm of informal and imaginative (e.g., prophet’s vision) rational activity.
Translogic
Jesus’ priesthood is reflective of his mediatory work, his salvific act in the form of the vicarious atoning work on the cross.
 Jesus’ prophethood is reflective of his empowering work, his bringing the message of God (Godself) to the world in the form of inbreaking of God’s kingdom into history.
Two Missions of Jesus
Today we are going to look at the mission of Jesus.
Although Grenz brackets the mission of Jesus into two large categories of his prophethood and messiahship, but I would like to divide it up into two major themes: his priesthood and prophethood.
The Mission of Christ
Aaron Yom
Is translogic necessary for theology today?
Could you add more insight to the correlation between Jesus’ prophetic ministry to Christ’s translogic?
What are some of the similarities between the logic of Christ and the logic of the Spirit? What are their differences?
This concludes this week’s lecture.
Questions
The charismatic Christ is the one who is filled with and empowered by the Holy Spirit, proclaiming and performing God’s saving work, displaying signs and wonders, and bearing witness to the kingdom of God. 
Jesus was conceived by the Spirit (Luke 1:31-35), he was ‘filled with the Holy Spirit’ and ‘led by the Spirit’ (Luke 4:1), and he returned from the wilderness ‘in the power of the Spirit,” as he began his ministry of preaching in the synagogues of Galilee (4:14). 
His disciples were filled with the same Spirit, preaching, healing, and witnessing to the world in the power of the Spirit.
The Chrismatic Christ
What is Torrance arguing against?
Why does he opt for the logic of Christ instead of other biblical principles such as infallibility?
Questions to Consider
Remember, Torrance is an orthodox scholar, so he is in line with the mainline Christian tradition.
Because of God’s grace, we can know God. Torrance calls this act of grace, “the logic of Christ.”
There are three things about the logic of Christ (that is, translogic).
 He points to the irreversibility (both ontological and epistemological). Torrance affirms that God is able to come to us from his side only (so he argues against natural theology).
He accentuates the principle of conformity. In other words, we can only be true to ourselves as well as to others by conforming to the patterns of Christ.
He relies on the principle of “pointing away” from ourselves to God. For instance, the term “Father” that denotes God should never be equated with human fathers in this world. The Father God is someone who is beyond this world.
Torrance’s Logic of Christ
Third, translogic reveals that there is a limitation of our symbols and language in that reality cannot be fully captured by symbols alone, as in the case of God who is infinitely greater than our words or logic.
Translogic
Let me explain the terms that you may not be familiar with.
First, the term “translogic” means that theological thinking cross-fertilizes and brings together different conceptual systems in order to engage meta-science.
What is meta-science?
Meta-science explains the fundamental things in the world as well as the totality of reality.
For instance, when we talk about human beings, meta-science not only concerns with the physical components but also psychological and spiritual components of humanity.
Translogic
How would you weave all these threads into a single tapestry?
There have been some attempts to correlate all these views (e.g., Pannenberg’s work, What is Man?).
Do you think that Pannenberg succeeded in doing this project? It could be a good theological paper.
I think this is enough for this week’s lecture.
Why is this reductionistic rationalism unhealthy to today’s academia? Or theology?
 Remember the argument on the personal and translogical approach to theology!!!
No one single conceptual system holds all the answers but we come closer to the truth when many different conceptual systems are networked together. Do you agree? Can you think of any setback to this proposal?
There is a correlation between Hegel’s concept of self-transcendence, Karl Rahner’s concept of “supernatural potency,” Arnold Gehlen’s “infinite obligation,” Schleiermacher’s “absolute dependence on the infinite,” and Torrance’s translogic. (This may be a good research topic for you).
Openness to the world itself does not always leads to God but has the potential to lead to the concept of God. For instance, some scientific theories are open (such as the theory of evolution for this theory revolve around the possibility of becoming something new) but they do not always lead to God.
My question to the class is, How do we do experience the environment in new ways?
Why is it necessary?
The answer lies in my previous discussion of translogic.
Do you see the similarities between the concept of translogic and Grenz’s discussion of openness to the world? (A good research topic)
Let’s return to the question, What does it mean to be human?
Referring to our text, Grenz tackles this question from our place in the world.
What did the ancient people believe?
Theologian Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971) confronts this on the first page of his classic The Nature and Destiny of Man:
Man has always been his most vexing problem. How shall he think of himself?... If (he) insists that he is a child of nature and that he ought not to pretend to be more than the animal, which he obviously is, he tacitly admits that he is, at any rate, a curious kind of animal who has both the inclination and the capacity to make such pretensions. If on the other hand he insists on his unique and distinctive place in nature, and points to his rational faculties as proof of his special eminence, there is an anxious note in his avowals of uniqueness which betrays his unconscious sense of kinship with the brutes…. Furthermore the very effort to estimate the significance of his rational faculties implies a degree of transcendence over himself which is not fully defined (Niebuhr, The Nature and Destiny of Man, 1).
Cox claims that broadly there are two types of mysteries (see Harvey Cox, The Future of Faith).
What are they? You could guess it, but many people will never get it right.
The two mysteries are the “self” and the “other.”
In the words of Cox, there is a sense of unknown in the world “out there” and the world “in us.”
Our declaration, “God is the origin of humankind,” arises as theological interpretation of a foundational biological datum concerning humans, namely, our “openness to the world.” Humans have a place in the universe: We are creatures with a special destiny in God’s program. God created us to be the recipients of his special love and a special value. All humans share in that status, because God calls each one to participate in the destiny he has ordained for us. Our origin lies in God, for God is the source of both the existence and the essence of humankind as a whole and of each human person in particular (Grenz, 143).
Summary of Grenz’s Argument
The assertion “God is the source of value” is especially applicable to the realm of human value or the worth of individual persons. Our value is not merely a function of our perceived worth to another or to society. Instead, our value is based on the worth God ascribes to us (Grenz, 143).
 As an example, Grenz points out the abortion issue. A fetus does not become valuable only when he or she is “a wanted child” or when society chooses to acknowledge the unborn child as a person with rights (Grenz, 143).
 Who would disagree with this statement?
Human Origin in God
Theologically, the answer to the human origin lies in God himself. If we know God, we would know ourselves.
 “We do not create ourselves. We did not and cannot choose to be. Nor does our actual existence in the world come from ourselves. Rather than being intrinsic to us or arising from our own being, our life is a derived life. We owe our existence to God the Creator” (Grenz, 140).
 ”God is the Father of all, even of the wicked, insofar as he is the source of the existence of, and the author of the purpose or destiny for, each creature. Even in our rebellion, we cannot escape the simple truth that we are not the source of our own existence” (Grenz, 141).
 To twist this statement slightly, for some scholars, God is not only responsible for the existence of wickedness in the world but also our wicked behaviors.
Do you agree? Why or why not?
Human Origin in God
Now, we are ready to tackle the issue of the human origin.
Against this background, Grenz provides his own view.
Grenz’s focuses on human adaptability as the point of departure for theological anthropology.
 The key subsidiary concept is openness.
 Grenz cites Pannenberg and states that “the “unique freedom of man to inquire and to move beyond every regulation of his existence.” (Sounds familiar? Is not this translogic?).
As this definition suggests, the phrase “openness to the world” refers to the uniquely human ability to experience the environment always in new ways (this is very important concept in the modern theology).
Grenz’s Concept of the “Openness to the World”
Let’s look at contemporary view of humanity.
The universe is not a “home” in which we naturally belong. Rather it is the material object of our human creative and transforming activity (Grenz, 128).
 We are not the subset of this world but the critical part of this world, all interacting in a dynamic process of becoming.
 Everything belongs to one another in a chain of action and reaction.
Contemporary View
As Cox has shown us, because there is a sense of mystery associated with the study of “who we are,” this mystery has been attempted to correlate with the mystery of who God is.
Thus, the understanding of the self has been unpacked from the understanding of God.
Niebuhr is describing what some call “myself as mystery.”
Not only can we watch ourselves thinking; we can watch ourselves watching our thinking.
The next step, watching the watcher watching, opens onto endless and baffling horizons, like mirrors reflecting mirrors.
However freightened with infinite regression our thoughts about time and space are, our experience of ourselves seems even more perplexing.
Modern psychology has approached this dilemma with the concept of “identity,” and it seems clear that identity is inextricably tied up with ethics.
“What should I do?” is always linked to “Who am I?”
As humans, “we not only wonder about ourselves, but wonder why we are wondering. Just as part of the mystery of the universe is that we find it a mystery, so part of the mystery of the self is why we find it a mystery. Who am I to reflect on myself and on myself reflecting?” (Cox, 29).
Let me introduce Harvey Cox who is a well known theologian who helps us to understand (at least preliminarily) why we need to study theological anthropology.
A student once asked me, why do we need to study theological anthropology?
This question seems to be a trivial one when we know that theology cannot avoid but to discuss the God-humanity relationship.
But, if we dig deeper into this question, we find that it is not that simple.
Theological Anthropology: Introduction
Let me help you and lay a preliminary conclusion for this topic.
In order to sustain a holistic view on human person, we need to connect below seven views on the origin of humanity.  
1. A biological view - Man is an animal with a highly developed nervous system. The laws of his being are biological in character.  
2. A material view - Man is a portion of matter composed of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, calcium, and other elements. His being is a derivative and a component of the universe. 
3. A psychological view - Man is a creature wholly formed by his heredity and environment. Human consciousness cannot be explained solely in terms of biology.
4. An economic view - The hunger drive in man is basic. The fundamental fact about man is the class struggle based on economic determination. 
5. Sociological view - Everything about man is determined by group mores, customs, prejudices, etc. The society is a key determinant of our being. 
6. A philosophical view - humanity is a creature that thinks. What is unique about humanity is his mind. 
7. An existentialist view - Man is what he makes himself to be. The call is to live creatively, to fulfill every potentiality, to become a person-in-action.
Preliminary Conclusions on Theological Anthropology
What the Bible opposes:
Not the theory of evolution but scientism or evolutionism.
 Scientism or evolutionism argues that only a specific type of scientific theories has the potential to explain the whole of human life.  
Theology rejects scientism because it is reductionistic. Theology has also the potential to explain the nature of human beings.
Excurses: The Theory of Evolution Controversy
Human openness has also a biological basis:
Animals are bound to their environment by limitations set by heredity. Humans, in contrast, are not so closely restricted by inherited factors because of the biologically based “plasticity and adaptability” of the human species (Grenz, 130).
 “Openness to the world” also suggests that as humans we enjoy the possibility of transcending any finite ordering of our environment, any “world” we create (e.g., Hegel’s concept of self-transcendence).
 We sense what Arnold Gehlen calls an “infinite obligation.”
The Openness to the World
As Psalm 8 indicates, the Hebrews, like other ancient societies (and so-called “primitive” cultures of ancient days) pictured reality as an ordered system.  
God (or the highest God) stood at the apex,
Intermediaries: 
Heavenly intermediaries were the heavenly beings like angles, or the dimurge (Greek gods)
Earthly intermediaries were humans.
 And the lowest tier lies the rest of creation — animals, plants, and inanimate objects.
 Some of us Christians still hold to this view.
Do you think this is viable in today’s world? Why or why not?
Ancient View
Aaron Yom
The origin of humanity
Grenz’s work provides good introductory materials on the topic of sin and grace.
 How does the Bible define the concept of sin?
Today, we are going to take a look at tremendously complex theological questions of sin and grace.
This topic is actually divided into two parts.
The first part is this introduction primarily based on Grenz’s work (this week’s lecture) and the second part (next week’s lecture) is on the two debates (Augustine and Pelagian Controversy and Calvin and Arminian Controversy).
In my judgment, theology should be able to engage other traditional reflections in order to be innovative and self-critical of what we know (thus, my inclination to rely on translogic).
We will proceed to look at the problems of sin and grace next week.
This concludes this week’s lecture.
What is the relationship between spiritual death and cosmic destruction?
Why is this interconnectedness important in understanding ourselves?
This is tied to Grenz’s depiction of sin as the destruction of community.
Greek Orthodox View of Sin and Grace
John Chryssavgis laments that “for a long time theological discourse on baptism and the spiritual life was virtually disconnected from this fundamental dynamic and dimension” (pg 80).
Why is the sin and grace important to the doctrinal development of baptism?
Greek Orthodox View of Sin and Grace
The problem of sin is radical; it extends to the core of our being. It requires a radical cure, a cure that comes from outside us and goes to the core of our problem. If our human condition is to be altered, we require a power no less than God himself.
Grenz’s Summary
Sin is depravity.
 Depravity is our human inability or powerlessness to remedy our dire situation.
Depravity
Sin is enslavement.
The effects of sin as a struggle of cosmic forces.
It is a cosmic power that enslaves its prey.
 No longer able to exercise choice, we discover that we must obey sin, for it exercises power over us.
Closely connected with this cosmic metaphor of sin is the Reformation idea of the “bondage of the will.”
Enslavement
Sin condemns.
It is a legal metaphor.
 Because of sin we stand condemned before a righteous God.
Condemnation refers to the sentence or judgment which hangs over us in our sin. Designed by God to be righteous — to mirror his own holy character — we live in sin.
As our fallen nature works its way in our actions, we commit sins. Therefore, we stand guilty before our Creator (John 3:18).
Condemnation
Sin alienates us from the other.
 God designed us to enter into relations with others — to participate in the community of God.
The divine intention is that we live in harmony with creation, that we enjoy fellowship with one another, and that we participate in the divine life.
 Through community, we in turn find our identity as children of God. Sin, however, is the failure to live according to this design. In fact, the fundamental result of sin is the loss of community. This loss occurs in all the dimensions of harmonious existence God intends for us.
Alienation
We all participate in sin.
Drawing from a variety of Old Testament texts, Paul concludes his discussion of the human predicament with the categorical declaration, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23; see also 1 Kings 8:46; Ps. 143:2; Rom. 3:10-20).
Each of us is personally indicted in the sorry reality that plagues all humankind.
Sin Is Universal
Not only does sin work to pervert God’s good provision of the law, even those good acts that we do readily fall under the evil impulse.
 Repeatedly we discover that despite our apparent good intentions, corrupt motives also lie behind the good things we do.
Sin Perverts Goodness
Because of sin, the apostle declares, we cannot understand spiritual truths (1 Cor. 2:14; 2 Cor. 4:4), and our thinking has become “futile” (Rom. 1:21).
In fact, our mind is even hostile to God (Rom. 8:7-8).
In infecting the human heart, sin has likewise corrupted our affections.
Sinful humans are “enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures” (Titus 3:3).
Sin Infects the Whole and Core of Our Being
Grenz makes some preliminary conclusions.
Scriptures link sin with the core of our being.
Sin dwells in our “hearts” or in our “flesh” (Mark 7:14-23; Matt. 12:33-37).  
Both the Hebrew and the Greek terms translated “flesh” (basar and sarx) can refer to the whole human person in our moral weakness, in our tendency to sin or rebel against God in every area of life.
The Scriptures teach that sin affects a person’s entire heart.
It infects our personal “control center.”
He speaks of sin as causing “our foolish hearts” to be “darkened” (Rom. 1:21) and our minds to be “corrupt” (1 Tim. 6:5).
Sin Infects the Whole and Core of Our Being
Can you make any conclusion just by looking at the biblical concepts?
Question
The Greek word hubris, which occurs occasionally in the New Testament (e.g., Acts 27:10,21; 2 Cor. 12:10), parallels the Hebrew pasha’. William Barclay defines it as a “mingled pride and cruelty. Hubris is the pride which makes a man defy God, and the arrogant contempt which makes him trample on the hearts of his fellow men.”
In classical Greek, hubris carried greater significance than is evidenced in the New Testament. The ancient philosophers viewed it as the supreme sin, one which brought destruction and total ruin.
Pasha’ and hubris
The New Testament writers likewise use several terms to describe the phenomenon of sin.
Parabasis (“the transgression of a boundary”), parakoe (“disobedience to a voice”), paraptoma (“falling where one should have stood upright”), agnoema (“ignorance of what one ought to have known”), hettema (“the diminishing of what should have been fully rendered”), anemia (“the non-observance of a law”), and plemmeleia (“a discord in the harmonies of God’s universe”).
New Testament Terms
Underlying its theological meaning is its more fundamental use as a verb of movement — “missing the right point.” 
Also, chatha can denote “to lose,” as the opposite of “to find” (Prov. 8:35-36).
 Or it can carry the idea of inaccuracy in exercising certain abilities.They “could sling a stone at a hair and not miss” (Judg. 20:16).
 As a description of the sinful human situation the term means “to depart from God’s purpose” (or God’s law) or “to miss the goal,” whether ignorantly or deliberately (Lev. 4:2; Num. 15:28).
 Generally chatha refers to specific actions, whether of thought, word, or deed.
Chatha
The most widely used term to describe “sin” in the Old Testament is chatha.
 Basically this word means “to miss the right point” or “to deviate from the norm.”
Thus, it refers to “erroneous action.”
Chatha
Aaron Yom
Sin and grace part 1
 John Chryssavgis makes an important point that may help us solve sin and nature problem in the West.
 “Even in its fallen state, creation is seen to lead us back to an awareness of divine grace and beauty — in the Church Fathers, this is termed ‘natural contemplation.’ Yet such an attitude comes into conflict with the line of theology, particularly in the Augustinian or Calvinist tradition, that regards the world as a 'lump of perdition', as handed over to the forces of sin and evil” (pg, 84).
 What is the significance of this statement?
Greek Orthodox View of Sin and Grace
Why does the differentiation between mortality and sinfulness in relations to the doctrine of sin and grace matter for the author?
 Hint: this is the differentiation of the Eastern and Western views on nature and grace.
Greek Orthodox View of Sin and Grace
In order to prepare for the next lecture, please read the article #5 pages and think about below questions.
 Do you agree with John Chryssavgis comment that the content of the fall from grace is that “Adam and Eve were called to show gratitude and glory to God — to be eucharistic, doxological beings”?
Excurses: Greek Orthodox View of Sin and Grace
Grenz points out the results of sin with four metaphors: alienation, condemnation, enslavement, and depravity.
The Results of Sin
The noun hamartia and its related verb hamartano. Similar to the Old Testament word chatha, hamartia means “to miss the mark” or “an offense in relation to God with emphasis on guilt.”
 The New Testament usage of hamartia describes the human predicament as a complex situation.
 Similar to the central Old Testament understanding of the human malaise, hamartia can refer to sin as a specific act.
Sin holds sway over individuals not merely externally, but also internally.
 Consequently, hamartia also denotes the defective, internal dimension of the human person.
Hamartia
Old Testament
These include ‘avah (“bent” or “crooked”), ‘aval, which refers to the lack of integrity and hence is generally translated “iniquity,” ‘avar (“to cross over” or “transgress”), ra’ (“the rule of evil”), ma’al (“breach of trust”), and pasha’ (“to revolt” or “refuse subjection to rightful authority”).
Definition of Sin
These five theological statements (not to be equated with biblical statements) are strong arguments.
As always, here comes Arminius who reacted negatively to it.
These two controversies are still hot topics of theology today (though it is not as fervent as in the early part of the 20th century).
This concludes this week’s lecture.
Preliminary Conclusion
We need to respect relationality.
Synergism needs to be emphasized over against monergism (God-man and God-world relationship is pushed forward rather than monarchism or imperialism).
 Rather than allowing God to be an imperial being who has preordained everything without any regard for human or his creation’s participation, we need to account for God who, within the realm of his grace, allows his people to exercise freedom.
Let me provide my own conclusion (you do not need to agree with me), which will help you understand a bit more about finding your own stance.
My conclusion is based on the viewpoints from Eastern Orthodoxy.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Arminius presented 4 decrees against Beza which turned into five articles that were adopted a year after Arminius death in 1610 .
Total depravity, with prevenient grace, does not preclude free will.
Conditional election in view of foreseen faith or unbelief.
Justification is possible for all, but only completed when one chooses faith.
Conversion involves free will and is resistible.
Preservation upon the condition of persevering faith with the possibility of a total and final apostasy.
Calvinism and Arminianism
The birth of Protestant scholastics (radical Calvinism).

Protestant scholastics was the mainstream, spearheaded by a guy named Theodore Beza.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Calvin’s solution was to posit a dual will of God—one revealed and one secret.
God’s revealed will offers mercy and pardon to all who repent and believe.
 God’s secret will foreordains some to eternal damnation and render it certain that they will sin and never repent.  
Taking this to another level, Calvin’s followers etched in stone five articles of Calvinism.
Augustine and Pelagius
The doctrine of predestination was a logical outgrowth of this debate.
Augustine claimed that only the utterly unmerited assistance of God leads to our salvation.
As Christ himself teaches, “without me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).
If God’s grace is necessary at every step of human activity, and if that grace cannot be resisted, then it follows that God’s will can never remain unfulfilled.
Augustine and Pelagius
Augustine’s Theology

In contrast to Pelagius, who structured his theology around the concept of personal moral responsibility, Augustine grounded his theology in the absolute sovereignty of God.
Here is the difference between from above approach (Augustine) and from below approach (Pelagius).
We are utterly dependent upon the care of another for our survival.
Augustine and Pelagius
Pelagius’ Theology

Pelagius argued that humans need to have a clear view of their moral duty and possess the ability to meet the demands of that duty.
Jesus commands us to “be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mt 5:48).
If Christ commands moral perfection, reasoned Pelagius, then it must follow that humans are capable of achieving moral perfection.
My Own Preliminary Conclusion
The doctrine of sin and nature needs to focus on the difference between the potential and the actual.  
Potential is the prevenient grace and actual is God’s actual salvation.
We all have the potential to be saved because of God’s prevenient grace, but we are saved only when we activate this potential by responding to God’s grace. 
Also, we need to know that the notion of prevenient grace is related to the theology of nature.
God saves not only humanity but also the natural world, and for this reason, the natural world can tell the story of God’s salvific act.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Now you should be able to summarize the arguments between Augustine and Pelagius and between Calvinism and Armenianism.

Which side is correct?
Is this argument still valid today?
How could you reconcile these differences?
Calvinism and Arminianism
Although Beza was Arminius’ former teacher, Arminius reacted strongly against him.
Is this possible, God not only imputes righteousness but also imputes sin?
Are human beings merely puppets?
Was not the reformation for the people, by the people, and with the people?
Calvinism and Arminianism
On top of this, Beza developed what is known as supralapsarianism.
Beza defined supralapsarianism as God preordained the Fall of Adam (“supra” = before and “lapsa”-fall)!
Calvinism and Arminianism
Here are the particularities of Beza’s teaching.
The emphasis on philosophy and logic.
The construction of highly coherent systems of Protestant doctrine.
What many of them tried to do was to discover and carve into stone a rigid Protestant orthodoxy that could repel all heresy, including attacks by radicals and Roman Catholic critics.
What are its implications?
Protestant scholastics expunged mysterious and mystical components of Protestant theology, became inflexible and dogmatic.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Magistrate Reformers (e.g., Calvinists) persecuted the Radicals.
Magistrate Reformers had a close tie with the standing government.
The first series of persecution was spearheaded by the magistrate reformers (Calvinists) who fought hard to protect their doctrinal and political inclinations.
The radical reformers were either excommunicated from the “church,” imprisoned and/or tortured to renounce their beliefs, and the leaders such as Menno Simons were burned at the stake.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Let me give you a background story of Arminius.
The Radical reformers (e.g., Menno Simons) believed in the principle of separation of church and state.
They renounced “determinism” in matters of religious belief because they emphasized the experience of regeneration (being “born again”) by the Spirit of God over forensic justification (salvation as a legal transaction).
In the end, they rejected infant baptism in favor of believers’ baptism after regeneration.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Armenianism

Armenius did not actually argued against Calvin directly but his follower, especially Theodore Beza, a staunch Calvinist.

If you are a keen theologian, you should be able to tell the difference between Calvin’s theology and Calvinism. For more help, see some of the writings on this topic by Stanley Grenz and Roger Olson.
Calvinism and Arminianism
T -- total depravity. Sin is in every part of one's being, including the mind and will, so that a man cannot save himself.
 U -- unconditional election. God chooses to save people unconditionally and they are not chosen on the basis of their own merit.
 L -- limited atonement. The sacrifice of Christ on the cross was for the purpose of saving the elect, not everyone.
 I -- irresistible grace. When God has chosen to save someone, He will save that person.
 P -- perseverence of the saints. Those people God chooses cannot lose their salvation.
Calvinism and Arminianism
The doctrine of election is Calvin’s central organizing principle for his theology.
Calvin affirmed that in both Scripture and Christian tradition “God is said to have ordained from eternity those whom he wills to embrace in love, and those upon whom he wills to vent his wrath” (Calvin, Institutes, 3.24.17).
Does this mean that everyone is saved as suggestive by 1 Tim 2:3-4 and 2 Peter 3:9?
Calvinism and Arminianism
He affirmed, “The first man fell because the Lord had judged it to be expedient; why he so judged is hidden from us. Yet it is certain that he so judged because he saw that thereby the glory of his name is duly revealed” (Calvin, Institute, 3.23.8).
Calvinism and Arminianism
Rather, “God by the bridle of his providence turns every event whatever way he wills,” and “what for us seems a contingency, faith recognizes to have been a secret impulse from God” (Calvin, Institutes, 1.16.9)

Does this mean that even the fall of Adam and Eve was foreordained by God?
Calvinism and Arminianism
Sometimes Calvin referred certain events in history to God’s “permission,” but overall he saw God as the ultimate cause of everything.

Calvin denied the reality of contingency; nothing happens by accident.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Do you see a correlation between Calvin and Augustine?

Calvin’s doctrine of God is thoroughly Augustinian, which he considered thoroughly biblical.

Like Augustine, Calvin viewed God as the all-determining reality and taught God’s meticulous providence over nature and history.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Calvinism

Calvin rejected natural theology in favor of God’s Word as the surest path to knowledge of God and elevated Scripture, inspired and illuminated by the Holy Spirit.
What is natural theology?
Although God is adequately revealed in nature and in his Word, sin has so blinded humans that they cannot gain a true knowledge of God apart from a special illumination of the Holy Spirit that Calvin called the inner testimony of the Spirit, which is given only to the elect when they are regenerated (born again).
Augustine and Pelagius
Who is right?
What is at stake?
What is the result of this conflict?

A similar debate has transpired during and after the Reformation. As an example, let’s go to the debate between Calvinism and Arminianism.
Augustine and Pelagius
First, it failed to appreciate the utter gratuity of God’s grace.
All of the means by which God reaches out to humanity are gifts, and a gift is only truly a gift if it is freely given, not earned.
Second, countering Pelagius, he insisted that we could not move toward moral perfection through the exercise of our willpower.
Augustine and Pelagius
To Pelagius, on the other hand, we are mature, responsible adults who are able to move closer to God by doing good deeds.
Augustine felt that Pelagius’ understanding of the divine-human relationship was flawed on two counts.
Augustine and Pelagius
Three non-orthodox claims made by Pelagius:
Adam’s sin injured himself alone, and not the human race.
Before the coming of Christ there were persons without sin.
New-born infants are in the same condition that Adam was before the transgression.

However, Augustine rebutted Pelagius’ claims. Here comes the one of the greatest theologians ever lived.
Augustine and Pelagius
For Pelagius, human sinfulness is the result of humans imitating or repeating the example of Adam.
Through an even greater exertion of the human will, however, this cycle can be broken and persons may once again choose to do God’s will
Augustine and Pelagius
In Pelagius’ theology, the ability to follow the commands comes from God, but the willingness to follow the commands comes from the individual.
 What then prevents the person from consistently choosing to do God’s will? In other words, how does Pelagius deal with the problem of sin?
 Pelagius maintains that responsibility falls squarely on the shoulders of the individual.
Two Theological Debates Concerning Sin and Grace


Today, we are going to examine two controversial theological debates concerning the nature of sin and grace: Augustine and Pelagius Controversy and Calvinism and Arminianism Controversy.

The first debate is between Augustine and Pelagius. 
Let’s examine first Pelagius theology.
Aaron Yom
Sin and Grace, Part 2
Let me provide my own conclusion (you do not need to agree with me), which will help you understand a bit more about finding your own stance.
My conclusion is based on the viewpoints from Eastern Orthodoxy.
These five theological statements (not to be equated with biblical statements) are strong arguments.
As always, here comes Arminius who reacted negatively to it.
These two controversies are still hot topics of theology today (though it is not as fervent as in the early part of the 20th century).
This concludes this week’s lecture.
My Own Preliminary Conclusion
The doctrine of sin and nature needs to focus on the difference between the potential and the actual.  
Potential is the prevenient grace and actual is God’s actual salvation.
We all have the potential to be saved because of God’s prevenient grace, but we are saved only when we activate this potential by responding to God’s grace. 
Also, we need to know that the notion of prevenient grace is related to the theology of nature.
God saves not only humanity but also the natural world, and for this reason, the natural world can tell the story of God’s salvific act.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Arminius presented 4 decrees against Beza which turned into five articles that were adopted a year after Arminius death in 1610 .
Total depravity, with prevenient grace, does not preclude free will.
Conditional election in view of foreseen faith or unbelief.
Justification is possible for all, but only completed when one chooses faith.
Conversion involves free will and is resistible.
Preservation upon the condition of persevering faith with the possibility of a total and final apostasy.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Here are the particularities of Beza’s teaching.
The emphasis on philosophy and logic.
The construction of highly coherent systems of Protestant doctrine.
What many of them tried to do was to discover and carve into stone a rigid Protestant orthodoxy that could repel all heresy, including attacks by radicals and Roman Catholic critics.
What are its implications?
Protestant scholastics expunged mysterious and mystical components of Protestant theology, became inflexible and dogmatic.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Magistrate Reformers (e.g., Calvinists) persecuted the Radicals.
Magistrate Reformers had a close tie with the standing government.
The first series of persecution was spearheaded by the magistrate reformers (Calvinists) who fought hard to protect their doctrinal and political inclinations.
The radical reformers were either excommunicated from the “church,” imprisoned and/or tortured to renounce their beliefs, and the leaders such as Menno Simons were burned at the stake.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Armenianism

Armenius did not actually argued against Calvin directly but his follower, especially Theodore Beza, a staunch Calvinist.

If you are a keen theologian, you should be able to tell the difference between Calvin’s theology and Calvinism. For more help, see some of the writings on this topic by Stanley Grenz and Roger Olson.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Calvin’s solution was to posit a dual will of God—one revealed and one secret.
God’s revealed will offers mercy and pardon to all who repent and believe.
 God’s secret will foreordains some to eternal damnation and render it certain that they will sin and never repent.  
Taking this to another level, Calvin’s followers etched in stone five articles of Calvinism.
Calvinism and Arminianism
He affirmed, “The first man fell because the Lord had judged it to be expedient; why he so judged is hidden from us. Yet it is certain that he so judged because he saw that thereby the glory of his name is duly revealed” (Calvin, Institute, 3.23.8).
Calvinism and Arminianism
Rather, “God by the bridle of his providence turns every event whatever way he wills,” and “what for us seems a contingency, faith recognizes to have been a secret impulse from God” (Calvin, Institutes, 1.16.9)

Does this mean that even the fall of Adam and Eve was foreordained by God?
Calvinism and Arminianism
Do you see a correlation between Calvin and Augustine?

Calvin’s doctrine of God is thoroughly Augustinian, which he considered thoroughly biblical.

Like Augustine, Calvin viewed God as the all-determining reality and taught God’s meticulous providence over nature and history.
Augustine and Pelagius
Who is right?
What is at stake?
What is the result of this conflict?

A similar debate has transpired during and after the Reformation. As an example, let’s go to the debate between Calvinism and Arminianism.
Augustine and Pelagius
The doctrine of predestination was a logical outgrowth of this debate.
Augustine claimed that only the utterly unmerited assistance of God leads to our salvation.
As Christ himself teaches, “without me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).
If God’s grace is necessary at every step of human activity, and if that grace cannot be resisted, then it follows that God’s will can never remain unfulfilled.
Augustine and Pelagius
First, it failed to appreciate the utter gratuity of God’s grace.
All of the means by which God reaches out to humanity are gifts, and a gift is only truly a gift if it is freely given, not earned.
Second, countering Pelagius, he insisted that we could not move toward moral perfection through the exercise of our willpower.
Augustine and Pelagius
Three non-orthodox claims made by Pelagius:
Adam’s sin injured himself alone, and not the human race.
Before the coming of Christ there were persons without sin.
New-born infants are in the same condition that Adam was before the transgression.

However, Augustine rebutted Pelagius’ claims. Here comes the one of the greatest theologians ever lived.
Augustine and Pelagius
In Pelagius’ theology, the ability to follow the commands comes from God, but the willingness to follow the commands comes from the individual.
 What then prevents the person from consistently choosing to do God’s will? In other words, how does Pelagius deal with the problem of sin?
 Pelagius maintains that responsibility falls squarely on the shoulders of the individual.
Two Theological Debates Concerning Sin and Grace


Today, we are going to examine two controversial theological debates concerning the nature of sin and grace: Augustine and Pelagius Controversy and Calvinism and Arminianism Controversy.

The first debate is between Augustine and Pelagius. 
Let’s examine first Pelagius theology.
Aaron Yom
Sin and Grace, Part 2
Preliminary Conclusion
We need to respect relationality.
Synergism needs to be emphasized over against monergism (God-man and God-world relationship is pushed forward rather than monarchism or imperialism).
 Rather than allowing God to be an imperial being who has preordained everything without any regard for human or his creation’s participation, we need to account for God who, within the realm of his grace, allows his people to exercise freedom.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Now you should be able to summarize the arguments between Augustine and Pelagius and between Calvinism and Armenianism.

Which side is correct?
Is this argument still valid today?
How could you reconcile these differences?
Calvinism and Arminianism
Although Beza was Arminius’ former teacher, Arminius reacted strongly against him.
Is this possible, God not only imputes righteousness but also imputes sin?
Are human beings merely puppets?
Was not the reformation for the people, by the people, and with the people?
Calvinism and Arminianism
On top of this, Beza developed what is known as supralapsarianism.
Beza defined supralapsarianism as God preordained the Fall of Adam (“supra” = before and “lapsa”-fall)!
Calvinism and Arminianism
The birth of Protestant scholastics (radical Calvinism).

Protestant scholastics was the mainstream, spearheaded by a guy named Theodore Beza.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Let me give you a background story of Arminius.
The Radical reformers (e.g., Menno Simons) believed in the principle of separation of church and state.
They renounced “determinism” in matters of religious belief because they emphasized the experience of regeneration (being “born again”) by the Spirit of God over forensic justification (salvation as a legal transaction).
In the end, they rejected infant baptism in favor of believers’ baptism after regeneration.
Calvinism and Arminianism
T -- total depravity. Sin is in every part of one's being, including the mind and will, so that a man cannot save himself.
 U -- unconditional election. God chooses to save people unconditionally and they are not chosen on the basis of their own merit.
 L -- limited atonement. The sacrifice of Christ on the cross was for the purpose of saving the elect, not everyone.
 I -- irresistible grace. When God has chosen to save someone, He will save that person.
 P -- perseverence of the saints. Those people God chooses cannot lose their salvation.
Calvinism and Arminianism
The doctrine of election is Calvin’s central organizing principle for his theology.
Calvin affirmed that in both Scripture and Christian tradition “God is said to have ordained from eternity those whom he wills to embrace in love, and those upon whom he wills to vent his wrath” (Calvin, Institutes, 3.24.17).
Does this mean that everyone is saved as suggestive by 1 Tim 2:3-4 and 2 Peter 3:9?
Calvinism and Arminianism
Sometimes Calvin referred certain events in history to God’s “permission,” but overall he saw God as the ultimate cause of everything.

Calvin denied the reality of contingency; nothing happens by accident.
Calvinism and Arminianism
Calvinism

Calvin rejected natural theology in favor of God’s Word as the surest path to knowledge of God and elevated Scripture, inspired and illuminated by the Holy Spirit.
What is natural theology?
Although God is adequately revealed in nature and in his Word, sin has so blinded humans that they cannot gain a true knowledge of God apart from a special illumination of the Holy Spirit that Calvin called the inner testimony of the Spirit, which is given only to the elect when they are regenerated (born again).
Augustine and Pelagius
To Pelagius, on the other hand, we are mature, responsible adults who are able to move closer to God by doing good deeds.
Augustine felt that Pelagius’ understanding of the divine-human relationship was flawed on two counts.
Augustine and Pelagius
Augustine’s Theology

In contrast to Pelagius, who structured his theology around the concept of personal moral responsibility, Augustine grounded his theology in the absolute sovereignty of God.
Here is the difference between from above approach (Augustine) and from below approach (Pelagius).
We are utterly dependent upon the care of another for our survival.
Augustine and Pelagius
For Pelagius, human sinfulness is the result of humans imitating or repeating the example of Adam.
Through an even greater exertion of the human will, however, this cycle can be broken and persons may once again choose to do God’s will
Augustine and Pelagius
Pelagius’ Theology

Pelagius argued that humans need to have a clear view of their moral duty and possess the ability to meet the demands of that duty.
Jesus commands us to “be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mt 5:48).
If Christ commands moral perfection, reasoned Pelagius, then it must follow that humans are capable of achieving moral perfection.
Hurry!!! We are done with this lecture.
I hope you did not skip any of the slides.
During my M.Div. studies, Dr. Williams had me memorize all of his lectures. I am not going to ask you to do that, but you should study all these systematic theologians and their contributions to theology as a whole, and apply it in your theological writings.
This concludes the lecture for this week.
Here are my preliminary conclusion about the main components of Western theologians.
You should be able to add some more to it.
As you can see, Hicks’ theology represents a complete reconstruction of classical theism, where God’s transcendence is at the center, and exclusivism has been rampant.

No other theology has revised classical theism more than process theology and open theism. The evangelicals still claim that these are heretical teachings. Do you agree?
Next, British scholar John Hick tackles the issue of religious pluralism.
Let’s look at another German theologian who embarks on a quiet similar but yet different trajectory. His name is Jurgen Moltmann.
Next, we turn to another German scholar, Wolfhart Pannenberg.
As opposed to Barthian teachings, Paul Tillich (German scholar), another giant in theology, is ready to adopt liberalism but not without qualification.
What is the significance of this approach?
Barth is fighting against liberalism.
Does anyone know the core components of liberalism? 
Transcendence-God’s transcendence has been redefined from something that is detached from history to that which is related and even affected by history.
 Passibility-God is no longer seen as impassible (though many still claim God’s immutability). He suffers along with humanity and his creation.
 Panentheism or Panentheistic like concepts-God fills the world as the world is entirely embraced by God. The distinction between God and creation is still important but the focus is more on blurring this gap by the reliance on the “relationality” concepts.
 Personhood-the meaning of person is transitioned from individualism to communitarianism. This is well attested by Grenz’s text in which he unpacks systematic theology from the vantage point of community.
 God’s Being-there is an emphasis on God’s being, which is denoted in terms of “infinity,” “ground of being,” or “community.”
Preliminary Conclusion
The result is that each religion has to be confronted by the challenge of deemphasizing its own absolute and exclusive claims.  
His pluralistic theology is inherently contextual.
He notes that one’s religion usually correlates with where one lives. 
On the basis of these considerations, he calls for the basic common ground of the world religions.
John Hicks
Hick’s theology is theocentric theology.
It involves a shift from ecclesial theology (e.g., Catholic and Protestant theology) to theocentric theology that recognizes God who is at the center of all things. 
It is on this basis that Hick defines his view of pluralism: There is “both one unlimited transcendent divine Reality and also a plurality of varying human concepts, images, and experiences of and responses to that Reality.”
Thus, all religions, whether Christian or Hindu or Buddhist, are challenged to move from a dogmatic view in which a particular religion stands at the center and other religions are judged by the criteria of that center, to a genuinely pluralistic view of God, where one God is at the center and our interpretations of that one God at its peripheral.
John Hicks
Also, Moltmann adopts the panentheistic concept of God, which should not be equated with strict panentheism.
Strict panentheism makes no distinction between God and creature, albeit God is bigger than creature.
Moltmann does see the distinction between God and creature; however, unlike classical theism, which often depicts God as the transcendent one detached from the world, and pantheism, which equates the world and the divine without remainder, Moltmann sees a genuine mutual relationship between God and the world even while they maintain their differences.  
Both influence and condition each other, but God affects the world more than the world affects God because God is the Creator and Sustainer.
Here again, the contemporary theology’s dependence on the concept of “relations.”
Jurgen Moltman
So what is the implication of the meaning of transcendence?
It is being open to God and future in history (compare this to what I said previously about “translogic”). Thus Moltmann calls this transcendent immanence.
This has a quiet important consequence for classical theism. Remember the key component of classical theism is “impassibility of God’?
Jurgen Moltmann
Moltmann based Christian hope firmly on a historical ground, namely, the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
By suffering the death of his Son and raising him from the dead, the God of the Bible confirmed his promises to bring new life and hope to the dying world (prolepsis).
 Thus, revelation of God, the way to know God, is not an epiphany event coming straight from above, as Karl Barth had suggested, but a promise event.
The praxis of hope is in the confidence that history “is open to God and to the future.” 
Jurgen Moltmann
The first thing he tackles is the issue of “transcending without transcendence”—maintaining hope while denying the metaphysics of transcendence, whether religious or philosophical.
How can you do this?
How can you avoid pure philosophical talk about God’s transcendence (like Thomas Aquinas and other medieval theologians) and still talk about transcendence? 
Moltmann cleverly does this by resorting to the concept of “hope” within the rubric of eschatology.  
Jurgen Moltmann
God is not something external to and imposed on humans (e.g., Barth) but rather something inherent to humanity. This is because of the incurable religiosity of humankind.
This is a similar claim made by Rahner, but there is a difference.
Rahner focuses on the mystery of God and our inherent transcendental experience of that mystery, and Pannenberg on the revealedness of God expressible in history. For more on the differences between these two scholars, read Mark Worthing’s dissertation, “Foundations and Functions of Theology.”
Wolfhart Pannenberg
Against all the forces of postmodernism, Pannenberg boldly sets up a coherent, logical presentation of Christian doctrine in defense of truth.
According to Pannenberg, the task of systematic theology is the exposition of Christian doctrine in a way that is in harmony with what we know of God and reality as a whole.
 In that sense, theological claims are by nature hypotheses to be tested and, if possible, confirmed.
The truth of Christian claims cannot be presupposed but rather is the goal of theology.
Wolfhart Pannenberg
All people have the potential to receive revelation—and in principle they have this capacity by virtue of the grace of God, which elevates them above themselves—such breakthroughs can occur. “
 In other words, if a non-Christian responds positively to God’s grace, for example, through selfless love for another, then that person, even though not knowing it objectively, has accepted the God revealed in Christ.
But since salvation cannot be divorced from Christ, the term “anonymous Christian” is more appropriate than “anonymous theist.”
One of the well known critics for Rahner is John Hicks. He sternly discredits Rahner’s claim of anonymous Christians. It may be a good research topic to compare these two theologians.
Karl Rahner
A helpful place to begin discussion of Rahner’s theology of God is with some of the key concepts in his “transcendental method.”
“Transcendental experiences” reveal that humans are naturally oriented toward the Holy Mystery, called God, first in the form of an “unthematic knowledge of God.
A human being is by nature “spirit,” which means he or she is open to receive revelation.
 How does Barth and Rahner related? Are they the same? They are in total opposition.
Karl Rahner
Let’s look at another German theology, Karl Rahner.
Yes, this lecture is the longest but the most important of all, for it gives you the overview of systematic theology and theologians.
That is why the God of the philosophers is not necessarily identical with the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (you should be able to see the counterargument given by Tillich).
 For him, it is “perfectly clear that the God of the Bible is not only the God of Jews and Christians but the God of all men.
 Kung does not naively admire world religions.
However, even in their error, the world religions proclaim the truth of God. “Though they are far from God, God is not far from them.”
Hans Küng
Küng maintains that much of atheism and other criticisms of religion have been more about rejecting institutionalized religion than about rejecting the idea of God.
Thus, we should not be too indiscriminate in morally condemning atheism as deliberate apostasy.
 Kung is a well-known ecumenical theologian who values peace and reconciliation more than any other global agenda.
He was an reformer of Catholic theology.
Hans Küng
Next, let’s look Swiss theologian Hans Kung’s proposal.
Communitarian ontology is a critical development in the contemporary world.
Research more on this and understand why this is an important topic. 
The implication at once we can see is the shift in understanding of God as someone who is relational to the core, in its being.
The redefinition of the term “person” now means that God is a relational being, if he is indeed a person.
John Zizioulas
Even God exists in communion. This contrasted with the ancient Greek ontology that looks at the “person” as an individual. 
As already mentioned, with his ontology of communion, Zizioulas wants to propose a new understanding of personhood, an “ontology of personhood” over against the Greek “non-personal” view. 
The Greek term for “person” originally referred to the mask of an actor in the theater.
John Zizioulas
Let’s turn to Greek theologian, John Zizioulas.
He is a well known theologian specializing on patristic theology. From his historical analysis, he found that the concept of Communion is an ontological category.
Tillich’s theology is one of the most difficult yet important developments for the 20th century.
However, his theological pendulum may have swung too far to the side of liberalism, as he wants to converge theology and philosophy into an non-separable unity, but his legacy is clear, a reconstruction of classical theistic thinking, all the while preserving its chief components (can it be possible?). 
You should be able to make a note of Tillich’s reconstruction of classical theism and what has been preserved in spite of his revision (a good paper topic).
Paul Tillich
He tried to make God-talk acceptable by resorting to the category of symbolic rather than literal language.
We cannot call God “personal,” for that would make him limited; we can only symbolically refer to him as “suprapersonal”.
The only thing that can be said of God is that God is “being-itself,” the “Ground of Being.””
 The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and the God of the philosophers is the same God.
Philosophy formulates the questions implied in human existence, and theology formulates the answers implied in divine self-manifestation under the guidance of the questions implied in human existence.
Paul Tillich
This conclusion comes from ontological questioning.
God does not exist. He is being itself beyond essence and existence. Therefore, to argue that God exists is to deny him.
Tillich is trying to preserve God’s transcendence, and at the same time, make his presence relevant to today’s setting.
Paul Tillich
Based on Karkkainen’s analysis, let me introduce a few of greatest German minds in the 20th century.

Let’s begin with Karl Barth.
This week we are going to discuss the doctrine of God from the 20th century Western perspective.
Did you know that the contemporary theology owes its theology greatly to German scholars?
Although other European nations contributed greatly to the modern development of systematic theology, Germany takes the cake in this category.
I will include Swiss, Greek, and North American scholars.
European Theologians
Can you see the difference between the 20th century Western view of God and classical theism?
What are the main components of the 20th century theism?
What components, if any, from the past have been preserved?
All denominations are being slowly affected by the re-interpretation of classical theism.
Do you think this is healthy to Christianity at large?
What about in your own religious/ministerial settings?
What theological claims made by these theologians are important to you?
Questions
American scholar Clark Pinnock
The main focus of Open theism is God as love.
God as a loving, caring parent is a more suitable image than, for instance, God as a king.
God acts in relation to human beings and is affected and moved by human action.
God is characterized by changeable faithfulness, a better term for God’s immutability.
God is completely reliable and true to himself and, at the same time, flexible in his dealings and able to change course, as circumstances require.
Future is an open possibility.
Open Theism
American scholar John Cobb
In his view of the process, he places emphasis on God as a dynamic act.
This is surely an alternative to classical theism, about which Whitehead writes, “Undoubtedly, the intuitions of Greek, Hebrew, and Christian thought have alike embodied the notions of a static God condescending to the world.”
 The God of process theology is creative-responsive love and relates to the world through persuasion, not through power and coercion.
 In process theology, then, God is not coercive power but rather the one who provides a “lure,” what Cobb calls a “teleological pull.”
Cobb sees this as the focus of Jesus’ message about the kingdom of God, “the One who calls.”
Process Theology
The very same divine Reality is present in various religions and cultures.
Thus, rather than assuming opposition between religions, Hick believes all religions have the same basic orientation and share the same hope for salvation.
There is a bargaining of major Christian concepts.
For instance, Hick maintains that Jesus’ divinity has to be understood metaphorically, as God’s love.
In such a view, Christ is depicted as the embodiment of divine love, complementary to what is revealed about the divine in Buddhism or in Hinduism.
John Hicks
Moltmann denies the divine impassibility of classical theistic traditions. “How can Christian faith understand Christ’s passion as being the revelation of God, if the deity cannot suffer?”
Furthermore, human suffering penetrates to the heart of the question of whether God exists and also raises the theodicy question.  
God does not shy away from suffering but makes it his own and so overcomes it and brings about hope.  
Theology is then liberated from the contradiction between God and suffering, and one can boldly confess that “God’s being is in suffering and suffering in God’s being itself,” because God is love.
Jurgen Moltmann
What is eschatology?
It is a paradoxical concept (philosophically and theologically) of already-but-not-yet.
There are two philosophical (and theological) senses attach to the concept of eschatology.
The first is the foretaste of what is to come (prolepsis), and the second is the present heading for the future directives (telos).
 Hope is eschatological since it is open toward future expectations while having a foretaste of the fulfilled hope in faith.
Jurgen Moltmann
Like Zizoulas, Pannenberg views God’s relational essence as “Spirit.
 Pannenberg affirms the relationality of the Spirit as he explains that the Spirit as the unifying force of the inner Trinity.
In the immanent Trinity (inner life of God), the essence of God is spirit since the Father and the Son are bound together by the Holy Spirit.
 Correlative to the immanent Trinity, in the economic Trinity (God in history), the Holy Spirit is the spirit of God in creation and the principle of the participation of creation in the divine life.
The Spirit is the “force” that connects creatures to their environment and orients them toward God; thus, the Spirit as force field is the most comprehensive and powerful field in which creatures live.
 From this pneumatological relational work follows a crucial implication, namely that the infinite also embraces, includes in itself, the finite.
As you can see, the contemporary theology is openly paradoxical. Do you think this is healthy?
Wolfhart Pannenberg
God is not alien to human nature but an intrinsic part of it as the necessary condition for human subjectivity (remember Rahner’s supernatural potency in our discussion of David Coffey?).
The task of “transcendental reflection” is to discover the necessary preconditions for human experience.
Human beings are not only part of nature but are also oriented toward an infinite, mysterious horizon of being that Christians know as God.  
He implies that as a transcendent, infinite “person,” God is a different kind of person than are humans, yet there is some analogy.
God is the “Absolute Person” and that therefore God is absolute in his freedom.
Karl Rahner
Modern philosophy has taught theology to take seriously God’s historical nature and “secularity.”
This can be a corrective to classical theism (why?) and give more credit to the biblical view of a living and dynamic God who acts in a real way in history.
 For this reason, he wants theology and science—which were never supposed to be antagonists—should work together and acknowledge the complexity and the unity of reality.  
His unity is not homogeneity or uniformity.
Kung argued that even if God’s existence could be proved by secular rationality, it does not lead one to the Christian God of the Bible.
Hans Küng
Tertullian (2nd century) is credited for the using the Latin term persona to depict God’s personhood.
This term is derivative of the Greek word “prosopon,” the mask worn by an actor in the theater, thereby implying that the personhood is actually a character or the characterization of an individual.
This concept is further propelled by a well-known philosopher Boethius (7th century), who argued that the personhood is an individual substance of a rational nature. 
Countering the classical notion of person, on the basis of their ontology of communion, Zizioulas describes the Holy Trinity as “the being of God could be known only through personal relationships and personal love.”
 Being means life, and life means communion.
John Zizioulas
The crucial question of life, which should also occupy theologians who talk about God, is the question of non-being.  
For modern, secular men and women, anxiety about non-being is present in everything finite.
The threat of non-being raises the question of a power of being that can overcome this threat and maintain being.
 Such being, or God, Tillich rightly notes, cannot be finite but must be “being-itself,” or, as he came to call it, “the Ground of Being.”
Paul Tillich
For Tillich, the task of theology is to be “apologetic,” in the sense of presenting the case for Christian faith in a way so that modern men and women can understand it and relate it to their needs.  
This apologetic approach presupposes some common ground between the Christian message and the contemporary culture (e.g., his method of correlation).
Paul Tillich
Barth, during and especially after his teaching career, received many criticisms. One fine example is from Jurgen Moltmann, who we will talk about it later.
Moltmann’s criticism mainly revolves around Barth’s opposition to liberalism.
Moltmann says that this is not healthy to theology.
Why not? This can be a good research topic. Interestingly, Moltmann was one of Barth’s “favorite” students.
For more details, Read, Moltmann’s The Spirit of Life.
Karl Barth
The term liberal is closely associated with concepts like “progressivism,” “modernism,” “culture,” and “anti-conservatism.”  
Two main features stand out in the works of liberalism.
First, it is a style of theology prepared to introduce far-reaching changes in the traditional understanding of Christian theology and faith, revising even what was earlier held to be constitutive beliefs fundamental to orthodoxy.
This decision to make “experience/culture” not the Bible or the gospel the criterion for theology is absolutely critical for the liberals. 
Second, the goal of theology is to re-connect God to the world and seek to articulate Christianity in terms of contemporary culture and thinking. However, in order for theology to be truly contextual, there must be some hard cognitive bargaining between Christian tradition and epistemic claims of modernity.  
Thus, Barth countering liberalism wants to return to the old ways but with modifications to include new theological developments.
Thus, his theological proposal is called neo-orthodoxy.
Karl Barth
According to Barth, there is absolutely no way of knowing God apart from revelation.  
Revelation is God’s self-offering and self-manifestation…. In revelation God tells man that he is God, and that as such he is his Lord.
For Barth, God’s revelation and God’s being are identical.
God’s act, being, and person are identical (I made a similar statement about Jesus in the section of the personal Jesus).
Karl Barth
Aaron Yom
The Doctrine of God: Western View
Dr. Aaron Yom
Full transcript