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Life in Christ: A Spiritual Commentary on the Letter to the Romans Paperback


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Life in Christ: A Spiritual Commentary on the Letter to the Romans + The Eucharist: Our Sanctification + Sober Intoxication of the Spirit: Filled With the Fullness of God
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Liturgical Press (February 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0814627994
  • ISBN-13: 978-0814627990
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.9 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #759,847 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

There have been very few books, if any, that have had such a profound effect on my life. I love the combination of stunning scholarship and beautiful spirituality.
Nicky Gumbel, Founder of Alpha Course

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Italian

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By wvano on November 30, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The phrase "inspirational literature" is often a euphemism for optimistic platitudes and shallow theology, but Life in Christ, though intended for a general audience, is inspirational in a deeper sense.

In a series of homiletic meditations, Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, the preacher to the papal household, explores the main themes of St. Paul's famous epistle in a creative yet orthodox manner. His emphasis is on going beyond intellectual assent to Christian dogma to a lived relationship with God through Christ in the Holy Spirit.

To explain and amplify St. Paul's message, Fr. Cantalamessa draws heavily on other New Testament texts, Patristic theologians, and Catholic saints and mystics, but his sources are also ecumenical and modern. For example, Martin Luther, John Wesley, and Soren Kierkegaard are quoted approvingly.

Throughout the Church's history the Letter to the Romans has served as a kind of refresher course in the essentials of the faith. With its winning enthusiasm and spiritual depth, Life in Christ is quite refreshing, too.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Book Glutton on September 2, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book provides a Spiritual Commentary on Saint Paul's Letter to the Romans. Father Raniero Cantalamesa, O.F.M., Cap., authored it while he was the preacher to the Papal Household.

The book is as inspiring as it is fascinating and enlightening. Probably the part of it that influenced me the most was Chapter 4, "He Was Put to Death for Our Trespasses." This was his own meditation on the Passion of Jesus. Father Cantalamesa greatly elaborates on Saint Paul's words, "Christ, while we were still helpless, yet died at the appointed time for the ungodly. [That] God proves his love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us. ... Since we are now justified by his blood, we will be saved through him from the wrath. While we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son" (Rom 5:6-11).

Father says that in the past, "Christian piety dwelt much more on the bodily suffering than on the spiritual suffering of Christ." However, he states that if we put together all the pain suffered by all who lived throughout the centuries, it would be greater than the pain Jesus endured, whereas, from the moral point of view all the suffering and sorrows together of all peoples will never equal the Passion of the Redeemer's soul. Saints and mystics, by living Christ's Passion themselves help us to realize that if God's love is "a never-ending ocean, bottomless and shoreless," so too is God's sorrow. The following are only a few excerpts from which I hope you can grasp at least some of what Father Cantalamesa describes Jesus experiencing in his Passion--for you and me. He tells us that Jesus was not simply suffering and expiating those sins, though remaining detached and untouched by sin. No, Sin was in him.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By C. Stephans VINE VOICE on January 16, 2009
Format: Paperback
Cantalamessa successfully provides exegetical commentary on the message of Romans while also creating an effective devotional writing. He uses the Letter to the Romans as a springboard to the entire gospel message and Christian life.

Cantalamessa takes readers on a spiritual journey that will lead to a more mature relationship with Jesus. He begins with the love of God and justification by grace through faith. He dwells on the love of God revealed in Christ's death and resurrection. He identifies the savagery of sin not only upon the cross but in each person's life. He brings readers to look to the Holy Spirit, the gift of life, and to the life of faith lived in the Spirit as characterized by love, humility, obedience and purity.

This book has the effect of drawing the reader into the life of faith revealed in the Letter to the Romans. Whether you want a commentary of the gospel revealed in Romans or a book to lead you into the life of the gospel, this will satisfy your search.

Cantalamessa does draw on the church's tradition, often from the patristic fathers and early church mystics. He uses analogies and parables that are helpful. As this is a spiritual commentary, he avoids getting into textual criticism or disputes about exegesis.
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Father Cantalamessa is one of my very favorite speakers and authors on spiritual matters. And this is one of his best books to date! Christians of all stripes will enjoy his exciting elucidation of the Book of Romans and the uplifting message it holds for us all!
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