The Christian Hope
What does it mean to hope for heaven? Brian Hebblethwaite traces the background to the Christian hope in the faith of Israel, examines its primary basis in the acts of God in the story of Jesus Christ, and follows the history of Christian attitudes to the future of humanity and of creation throughout the Christian centuries. The Christian Hope tells the complex story of the different strands, emphases and problems that have developed between biblical times and our own in the quest to understand 'the four last things' - death, judgement, heaven and hell. Hebblethwaite concentrates our attention on the modern period since 1900, an era when modern Christian theology has witnessed a remarkable recovery of interest in hope and the future as dominant motifs in its reflections. The discoveries of modern science have affected Christian hope and Christian understanding of creation and its ultimate destiny. At different stages in the history of the church, very different stresses have been laid on the present or on the future, on hope for the individual or on hope for society, on this-worldly hope or on other-worldly hope. Through a study of the basis of Christian hope and of the history of its interpretation, Hebblethwaite aims to present a balanced view of these different elements in the Christian tradition and a credible eschatology for today.
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