Tuesday, July 31, 2012

God and the World in the Old Testament: A Relational theology of Creation by Terence E. Fretheim
CRT (for creation and relational theology)

The whole book is 284 pages plus about 100 pages of notes and indexes.

from Chapter 1

The author starts with the comment "A remarkable number of Hebrew words are used with reference to creation with God as subject..." (p. 1)

He notes the vast number of  images and metaphors from creation used in the Old Testament. My comment: if we allow our children to lose touch with (first hand experience) they will not understand those images and metaphors.

"...because creation in the Old Testament is a theological category, it is not to be equated with nature or world."(p. 4) My comment: Interesting.

creation is ongoing...something that human and non-human creatures do. ( p.4)

Asking what does the word creation entail? He explores
          1)  "Originating Creation" - as when/where things originate,
          2)  "Continuing Creation" - where God continues to sustain, hold things together, and keep things running implying a system as opposed to God making moment by moment micromanagement decisions. "God also continues to create the genuinely new." (p.8)
            "The broad understanding of creation in ancient Israel was crucial ... it helped assure a fundamental earthiness, a down-to earth understanding of the faith that was related to life as it was actually lived rather than a faith centered in a spiritualistic, futuristic, or sentimental piety."(p.8)
            "God's continuing creation is as 'good' as the original creation. . .Given the realities of sin and evil, such continuing creational activity will not proceed without significant opposition." (p. 8)
          3) "Completing Creation" - He completes the incomplete. "The books of Genesis and Revelation provide a creational bracket for the Bible, and texts in between are a continuing witness to the purposive work of God toward this new creation. At the same time, the new creation is not a return to the original beginning - if that were the case, everything that had happened in between would finally be of no consequence . . . The new creation is not simply a rearrangement of that which has existed; something genuinely new will come to be." (p. 9)

He explores redemption, creation, salvation - interesting thoughts for evangelicals.

That's only part of Chapter 1. I'm going to keep reading but not get into the old quotes and comments.

I will get into the old asking of questions . . .

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