The Mystical Way in the Fourth Gospel: Crossing Over into God
Here is a sustained literary-critical reading of John's Gospel in terms of mystical theology. Arguing that John "is guiding, perhaps at times impelling, the reader along a path that leads from conversion through Christian initiation to mystical enlightenment and union," Professor Countryman suggests that this concern controls the Gospel's literary structure and unity. He demonstrates this argument through a fresh and readable translation of the Fourth Gospel, offering a new way of reading John that has direct relevance to Christian life today. The chapters in the book follow the progress of the would-be mystic from initial conversion through baptism and Eucharist to mystical enlightenment. In addition to this mystical program, and integrated with the narrative of the Gospel, is a theological interpretation of Jesus which explains why he is centrally important for the mystic. "An appealing and attractive interpretation that deserves close attention." Adris Newsletter L.William Countryman is Professor of New Testament at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific and the author of many books, including Good News of Jesus, The Language of Ordination, and Biblical Authority or Biblical Tyranny all published by Trinity Press International.