Living Jesus: Learning the Heart of the Gospel. By Luke Timothy Johnson. Harper SanFrancisco, 210 pp.
In an earlier book, The Real Jesus (1996), Luke Timothy Johnson criticized the style and self-promotion of the Jesus Seminar and questioned the methods and motives, if not the faith, of some of its members.
We have the tendency to define adulthood, and even ourselves, by our employment and our ability to exist independently. But in our difficult economic situation, isn't it time to rely on our rich theology and redefine our notions of self?
In the days before the Kansas School Board's August decision to strip the teaching of evolution from state science standards, the presidents of the Kansas university system issued a statement. "The simple fact is," they said, "people can believe both in God and in evolution."
A generation ago, Leander Keck, past dean of Yale Divinity School and Winkley Professor of Biblical Theology, emeritus, at Yale, wrote A Future for the Historical Jesus (1971), a book that proved to be prophetic. Who but Keck could have predicted our past decade's obsession with the history of Jesus?
The confessional writings in the Book of Concord, first published in 1580, are given authoritative status by Lutherans because they are viewed as faithful expositions of scripture, particularly of the gospel. Their accessibility to theologians, seminarians, pastors and churchpeople has, therefore, been a priority for Lutheran churches.