An Introduction to the Theology of Religions: Biblical, Historical & Contemporary Perspectives

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InterVarsity Press, Oct 23, 2003 - Religion - 372 pages
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Early in the nineteenth century Ernst Troeltsch, the great German liberal thinker, published the influential essay "The Place of Christianity Among the World Religions." The question of the relation of Christianity to other religions is every bit as relevant as and perhaps even more urgent today than it was then. Beginning with a consideration of the biblical perspective, Veli-Matti Kärkkäinen surveys the variety of diverse answers proposed by teachers of the church down through the ages. His reviews include the writings of Justin Martyr, Irenaeus and Clement of Alexandria, as well as those of Augustine, Luther, Calvin, and a broad selection of later Protestant and Catholic thinkers. He completes the historical section with an astute look at the radical challenges of Enlightenment and classical liberalism and the emergence of the fulfillment theory of religions. The bulk of Kärkkäinen's work provides a detailed and comprehensive survey of major confessional movements and theologians' opinions on the contemporary scene. Kärkkäinen provides succinct and trenchant descriptions of a wide diversity of theologians, including Karl Barth, Hendrik Kraemer, Paul Althaus, Karl Rahner, Hans Küng, Jacques Dupuis, Gavin D'Costa, Paul Tillich, Wolfhart Pannenberg, Lesslie Newbigin and M. M. Thomas, as well as Sir Norman Anderson, Clark Pinnock, Amos Yong, John Hick, Stanley Samartha, Raimundo Panikkar, Paul Knitter, Millard Erickson, Harold Netland and Vinoth Ramachandra. An Introduction to the Theology of Religions is an indispensable guide for anyone seeking to grasp and work their way through the full range of alternatives offered in answer to the question, What is the relation of Christianity to other religions?
 

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Contents

Outline
13
Overview of Biblical Testimony
33
The New Testament
41
Religions in the Bible
47
Religions in the Bible
49
Limited Openness to Other Religions
55
The Meaning of Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus
78
The Radical Challenge of the Enlightenment
90
EARLY APPROACHES
172
Religion as Unbelief
174
Jesus Christ as the Way the Truth and the Life
181
Original Revelation in Religions
187
ROMAN CATHOLICS 21 Karl Rahner Anonymous Christians
190
Religions as the Ordinary Way of Salvation
197
Toward a Christian Theology of Religious Pluralism
205
Trinitarian Theology of Religions
216

The Fulfillment Theory of Religions
103
Ecclesiastical Approaches
109
The Response of the Roman Catholic Church
117
The Response of the Anglican and Episcopalian Churches
123
The Response of Mainline Protestant Churches
127
The Response of the Free Churches
135
The Response of the Evangelical Movement
144
The Response of the Ecumenical Movement
151
Theologians Interpretations
163
Orientation to the Study of Theologians of Religion
165
MAINLINE PROTESTANTS 25 Paul Tillich The DynamicTypological Approach to Religions
224
Religions Competing for the Universal Truth
235
EVANGELICALS
261
A Pneumatological Theology of Religions
277
One Christ Many Religions
294
Jesus and the Other Names
309
The Enigma of Pluralism
324
Critical Reflections and Questions
342
Bibliography
356
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About the author (2003)

Veli-Matti Karkkainen is professor of systematic theology at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. He has published numerous articles in international journals of theology. His books include Pneumatology (Baker), Christology (Baker), Toward a Pneumatological Theology (UPA), An Introduction to Ecclesiology (InterVarsity Press), Trinity and Religious Pluralism (Ashgate), The Doctrine of God (Baker) and One with God (Liturgical Press).

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