28.11.04

The Resurrection of the Son of God

I just finished reading N.T. Wright's book, the title of this post, and it was excellent. I haven't fully processed everything yet, so this isn't going to be any kind of substantial post on it. These are just my initial thoughts and feelings.

I always find the end of Wright's books to be the best, because it is at that point that he takes his historical conclusions, and his arguements, and all the questions he has answered and moves them up a level to ask, in one way or another, so what? I also find the end of Wright's books, at least the books in this series, to be the most frustrating. He always briefly mentions what is coming up in his next volume, and I never want to wait until his next volume is out. I want it now.

For this specific book, his conclusion is something I have heard from him before, in other books or maybe sermons or both. It is his threefold point on what the resurrection means. A summary: many people short circuit from the resurrection to the entire Christian belief system and worldview, and this is not valid. The resurrection alone does not necessitate all that we like to tie on with it, especially ideas about Jesus divinity. Instead, there are three meanings, and one is the idea that Jesus is divine, but this idea comes later and has other things added on to it. The two more immediate meanings are that Jesus is Israel's messiah, God is acting now to bring freedom from exile to his people and all the follows from the messiah having come, and two that Jesus is the true lord of all the world, not just the Jewish messiah. Thirdly, there comes divinity and trinity and the like. Now, this is all good, but somewhere along the line I always fail to make a connection; I am not sure where it is, or what I am missing, but I just don't get parts of what is going on at the end.

I can't really say more about it until I have it clear in my own head. The book is excellent, as is everything I have read by Wright, I learned a lot from it.

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