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The Temple and the Church's Mission: A Biblical Theology of the Dwelling Place of God (New Studies in Biblical Theology) Paperback – October 17, 2004
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Beale has written a comprehensive (and to my mind, convincing) biblical theology, centering on the role of the temple both in Scripture and in the Ancient Near East. (David Renwick, Lexington Theological Quarterly, Spring 2007)
I recommend this work for anyone wrestling with eschatological issues of fulfillment or handling temple texts that are dealt with in this book. As for me, I intend to have the book handy anytime I apporach biblical theology as a guidebook in methodology. (Tim Barker, Truth on Fire blog, July 12, 2008)
. . . One of the finest studies in biblical theology available. (Andrews University Seminary Studies, Fall 2007)
"[Beale's] exegesis and theological insights will provoke [readers] in their own study of the Temple." (Missiology, January 2006)
"The importance of this book lies not only in the competent handling of its chosen theme but in three other things: its evocative unpacking of the theme of the temple and its relations to broader structures of thought, including the kingdom of God; its modeling of the way biblical theology is to be done; and its capacity to cause readers to perceive fresh and wonderful things in the Scriptures, and to bow in worship and gratitude." (D. A. Carson)
About the Author
G. K. Beale (PhD, University of Cambridge) holds the J. Gresham Machen Chair of New Testament and is professor of New Testament and biblical theology at Westminster Theological Seminary. His books include The Book of Revelation (New International Greek Testament Commentary), 1-2 Thessalonians (The IVP New Testament Commentary Series), The Right Doctrine from the Wrong Texts? Essays on the Use of the Old Testament in the New, John's Use of the Old Testament in Revelation, The Temple and the Church's Mission and We Become What We Worship.
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Top Customer Reviews
Beale's thesis is "The old testament temples were symbolically designed to point to the future eschatological reality of God dwelling with his people" (25). Using this as his fulcrum Beale explores the cosmic symbolism of the temple in the OT, its uses, the coming *new* temple in the person of Christ, the temple-drama in Hebrews, and the consummating eschatological glory in Revelation.
Specifically Beale argues that with Christ the temple ceased to do its purpose (why have the shadow when the real is come?), and worse, it had become corrupted. Jesus identifies himself with the temple because he, not the temple, is the real bridge between God and man. Interestingly, when Christ died on the cross and the curtain was torn, there were stars on the curtain. This is symbolic of the cosmos (the old world order)and the inaguration of a new creation (189).
In the Book of Acts, the Temple (yet to be defined here), is contrasted with the Tower of Babel as anti-types. Part of God's curse on Babel was its refusal to spread God's glory throuhgout the earth. Secondly, Acts is an implementation of the work of the Gospels. More specifically, Pentecost is a divine theophany of the Heavenly Temple. Pentecost is a fulfillment of Joel's prophecy that nations are to be reoriented around Temple Worship.
He also surveys the New Temple in Paul's epistles, Hebrews, Revelation, and the practical implications thereof.
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