Subscribe via RSS Feed

Rediscovering the Triune God: The Trinity in Contemporary Theology

Each section of the final four chapters presents the work of one of the theologians and of the recognition or critique their work has received. As such, the book builds a fine introduction to the writings of those who have shaped theology in recent decades. The first chapter outlines the role of Friedrich Schleiermacher and G. W. F. Hegel in the rediscovery of trinitarian thought. Chapter 2 sketches the work of Karl Barth and Karl Rahner, who envisioned the trinitarian elements of Christian thought primarily from the perspective of God’s self-manifestation in the Word and thereby set the parameters of theology in Protestant and Catholic thought throughout much of the twentieth century. Chapter 3 introduces the thought of Jürgen Moltmann, Wolfhart Pannenberg, and Robert Jenson, all of whom explored the self-disclosure of the triune God in history through the three members of the trinity in largely social and relational terms. Chapter 4 carries this thought further in the introduction of Leonardo Boff, John Zizioulas, and Catherine Mowry LaCugna, who made the aspects of relationality in the triune God more explicit. The final chapter concludes with the thought of Elizabeth Johnson, Hans Urs von Balthasar, and T. F. Torrance, who revived the theological focus on the interplay of the three divine persons in the immanent Trinity.

Grenz’s perceptive survey witnesses to the immense interest invested in the story, history, and theology of the triune God. In a more fundamental way, the reader will benefit from this work as an introduction to a significant number of theologians, whose thought one may further pursue in response to the book. On a more nuanced level, Rediscovering the Triune God would serve as a valuable companion to such works as J. N. D. Kelly’s Early Christian Doctrine, Edmund J. Fortman’s The Triune God, and Paul Tillich’s A History of Christian Thought.

Despite the ecumenical variety and historical depth of the book, it does not offer a global perspective on trinitarian theology in the late modern world. The authors included in this survey come almost exclusively from the West. In this context, one might wonder why Grenz did not include the work of Heribert Mühlen, one of the most significant Roman Catholic theologians of the twentieth century, who gave trinitarian theology the first personal categories for an understanding of the Trinity (I-Thou-We). Voices from the Eastern traditions are marginal, and the reader searches in vain for theologians from Asian or African contexts. Grenz justifies this selection with the suggestion that other theologies of the Trinity depend largely on the eleven theologians that form the heart of his book. In Mühlen’s case, this is not justifiable. In the case of trinitarian thought in non-Western perspective, the work of Veli-Matti Kärkkäinen, for example, has shown that reflections on African, Asian, and Latin American theologies are an influential part of forming the rediscovery of the doctrine of God in the contemporary world.

Pin It
Page 2 of 3123

Tags: , , , , ,

Category: Biblical Studies, Winter 2007

About the Author: Wolfgang Vondey, Ph.D. (Marquette University) and M.Div. (Church of God Theological Seminary), is Reader in Contemporary Christianity and Pentecostal Studies at the University of Birmingham, UK. He is an ordained minister with the Church of God (Cleveland, TN). His research focuses on ecclesiology, pneumatology, theological method, and the intersection of theology and science.

  • Connect with PneumaReview.com

    Subscribe via Twitter 1242 Followers   Subscribe via Facebook Fans
  • Recent Comments

  • Featured Authors

    Amos Yong is Professor of Theology & Mission and director of the Center for Missiological Research at Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena. His graduate education includes degree...

    Jelle Creemers: Theological Dialogue with Classical Pentecostals

    Charles Carrin, D.D., has served the body of Christ for over 65 years. Educated at University of Georgia and Columbia Theological Seminary, he denied, in belief and practice,...

    Interview with Charles Carrin about his book Spirit-Empowered Theology

    Craig S. Keener, Ph.D. (Duke University), is F. M. and Ada Thompson Professor of Biblical Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky. He is author of many books<...

    Listening for God’s Voice and Heart in Scripture: A conversation with Craig S. Keener

    William L. De Arteaga, Ph.D., is known internationally as a Christian historian and expert on revivals and the rebirth and renewal of the Christian healing movement. His major w...

    Exorcism in Public Places