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Jesus Symbol of God Paperback – January 28, 2000
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This is the sort of text I intend to have on my bedside table for a long time -- read in small snippets (I digest slowly), I know it will continue to provoke and inspire, and, it is to be hoped help me to clarify my own ongoing relationship with Christ.
In order for Christianity to remain meaningful, it has to adapt to differing times and circumstances, Haight argues. This book is therefore a modern apologetic; that is, it explains the faith in terms of the dominant culture. It focuses on christology, the study of Christ's relationship to God and man. For Haight, a christology must follow certain criteria, including fidelity to Christian tradition, ability to speak to the modern world, and how it empowers the Christian life.
Haight uses most of the book to construct the foundations for the "constructive christology" of the final part. The first part contains introductory chapters on what christology is and how to go about the task. The next two parts are concerned with analyzing the New Testament and historical approaches to Christology. In his analysis of these sources, Haight makes some things clear about the way christology should be done.
The most important is the sources need to be analyzed critically. Merely citing a biblical text, creed, or a theologian simply will not do. A text is never self-evident; using it always implies a method of interpretation. Citing a text without divulging the hermeneutical method will render a theology unintelligible to anyone outside a small circle. Such usage also implies a uniformity throughout history that is not there. Traditional sources are a result of historical processes, and originally spoke to a given time and audience.Read more ›
At the heart of any discussion of Christ is his relationship to God, the ultimate reality. This relationship matters because it discusses the ultimate end and purpose of human existence. If one is concerned about this, then Christianity offers some answers, at the heart of which is the notion of "salvation", of achieving the "kingdom of God." For example, the whole idea of the resurrection is an attempt, I think Haight is suggesting, to dramatize the nation of self-transcendence.
All of this, to me, sounds like the ways of interpreting poetry. There are many constructs of how Christ operates and we can learn from all of them; we do not have to make decisive judgments of the type that people do who interpret the words of the Bible literally. In the same way, there is no final and decisive answer to what a good poem means - there are always further interpretations that are valuable and freeing. A very impressive book which places Christianity in an intellectually defensible
Haight's grasp of the field is incomparable. This work is truly on the cutting edge as it brings catholic tradition into dialogue with postmodern realities. Haight seems destined to ask the difficult questions and one worries that this penchant may well find him in "hot water" with those short-sighted minds who claim the prerogative of preserving Roman Catholic doctrine in the curial halls of Vatican City.
The theological world is indebted to Roger Haight and I am proud to have learned from him personally.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Christology is an ever-evolving discipline in the Catholic Church. Just as theologians debated during the Councils over past millennia regarding its doctrine, Fr. Read morePublished 3 months ago by RC
This book has had very serious problems with Cardinal Ratzinger and Pope John Paul II. Since I am just a humble and curious economist, and there are lots of good books on the same... Read morePublished 14 months ago by Mario Ramos Ribeiro
With intense detail this work separates the historical Yehoshua of Nazareth from the dogma, religion, church and Christianity overlays piled onto His sayings and story.Published on February 22, 2014 by Paul Saindon
Roger Haight is a wonderful theologian and anything he writes is worth reading. We have suggested this book to other readers and have given some as gifts. Read morePublished on April 17, 2013 by Teresa Boersig
This is not a book for laymen. I found the first 50 pages difficult. Yet, even as a thinking laymen, I find it very rewarding. I am 1/3 through it as I write.
If you enjoy reading hyper-intellectual bloviating pontificating verbiage about very little, then this is the book for you. Read morePublished on March 6, 2006 by Michael W. Potter
This book is well worth reading for those with a serious interest in contemporary christology. Some may take a different position from Haight's, but his findings are well worth... Read morePublished on September 30, 2005 by Barbara Moran
If anyone wants to read this book solely because it has been forbidden to do so by the hated Vatican, I have news for him: The Vatican does not forbid you to read this book! Read morePublished on April 16, 2005 by S. M. Barr
When a theological treatise attracts all the right wingnuts, none of whom have actually read it, you know it will be closely researched, well-written, and challenging. Read morePublished on April 6, 2005 by Siena