N. T. Wright on Christology and Monotheism

N. T. Wright on Christology and Monotheism December 28, 2013

Johnny Walker and Scot McKnight have posted about Tom Wright’s treatment of monotheism and Christology in his new two-volume work, Paul and the Faithfulness of God. I’ve been reading it, and unsurprisingly it takes a long time to work through nearly 1,700 pages. I will probably blog about it in chunks in the end.

I meant to mention a while back that James White, an apologist, took pains to depict mainstream New Testament scholarship – even that produced by Christians – as untrustworthy, focusing on examples like Jimmy Dunn and myself! There is probably little that needs to be said in response, other than that scholarly works are probably not best interacted with in audiobook form, and making up your mind first and then evaluating scholarship based in whether it does or does not confirm your preconceptions seems liable to lead to self-deception rather than learning.

But returning to N. T. Wright’s statements to the effect that Paul viewed Jesus as the one in and as whom God had come to Israel, I wonder what it would mean to flesh out (pun intended) the implications of those words. Can that language fit Jesus being God’s supreme agent? Can it fit Nicene and Chalcedonian Christology? Is Wright trying to get as close as he can to traditional Christological language without being thoroughly anachronistic? Or is he trying to be as faithful as he can to Paul without offending conservative Christians in the process? How do you understand the things that Wright has to say on this topic?

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