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Author: Carl E. Braaten,Robert W. Jenson
ISBN13: 978-0802844422
Title: Union with Christ: The New Finnish Interpretation of Luther
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Language: English
Category: Protestantism
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.; NEW STIFF WRAPS edition (September 1, 1998)
Pages: 192

Union with Christ: The New Finnish Interpretation of Luther by Carl E. Braaten,Robert W. Jenson

We first met Professor Tuomo Mannermaa at the 1993 Luther Congress held at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota. He was accompanied by an entourage of disciples representing the new "Finnish school," which is radically revising our understanding of Luther.

This book introduces the English-speaking world to the new Finnish interpretation of the theology of Martin Luther. The book gives a new and deep perspective on Luther and the interpretation of his concepts of salvation and Gods love. Easy to read and understand.

Dorman Braaten and Jenson's book on new interpretations of Luther's Christology and soteriology. The new Finnish perspective on Luther offers a refreshing corrective not only to the postñEnlightenment dualism of German Lutheran scholarship, but also to neoñevangelical Protestantismís tendency to define justification solely in forensic terms.

Union with Christ book. Start by marking Union with Christ: The New Finnish Interpretation of Luther as Want to Read: Want to Read savin. ant to Read.

The New Finnish Interpretation of Luther. Carl E. Braaten Robert W. Jenson. PAPERBACK; Published: 8/19/1998. ISBN: 978-0-8028-4442-2. Word & World "This book is valuable for the introduction of English-speaking Lutherans to the world of Finnish Luther interpretation. The reflective pastor will be able to recognize new angles for preaching and teaching that run counter to traditional conceptions.

Braaten, Carl . and Robert W. Jenson, ed. Union with Christ: The New Finnish Interpretation of Luther. Campbell, Constantine R. Paul and Union with Christ: An Exegetical and Theological Study.

this book is very interesting, although sometimes it has a slightly overly-biased ecumenical agenda; I do think it has a lot of helpful things to say. Some of the theological concepts and ideas here are wonderful. Although the authors do appeal to Scripture, I think more appeal to Scripture would be even more profitable, to back up their assertions.

Carl E. Braaten, "Robert William Jenson – A Personal Memoir", in Trinity, Time, and Church: A Response to the Theology of Robert W. Colin Gunton (2000), pp. 1–9. ^ eCCET.

This book introduces the English-speaking world to the new Finnish interpretation of the theology of Martin Luther, initiated by the writings of Tuomo Mannermaa of Helsinki University. At the heart of the Finnish breakthrough in Luther research lies the theme of salvation. Luther found his answer to the mystery of salvation in the justifying work of Christ received through faith alone. But Protestant theology has never enjoyed a consensus on how to interpret the Reformation doctrine of justification by faith. In opposition to the traditional forensic understanding of justification, Mannermaa argues that for Luther "Christ is really present in faith itself." Mannermaa's interpretation of Luther's view of justification is thus more ontological and mystical than ethical and juridical. As such, his work challenges a century of scholarly opinion concerning a foundational doctrine of Protestant theology.
Reviews: 7
I was really interested in this book for two reasons. First, it allows modern Lutherans (LCMS and LCWS) to move away from their typically myopic, one-sided christology that sees the incarnation in Anselmian terms wherein Christ is born to "pay the price" to satisfy the wrath of an angry Father who needs to punsih someone to let us off the hook for our sins both original and actual, thus pitting God's love against His justice. While there is some truth to this theory of atonement, it is far too narrow. It hardly is representative of the great tradition of the Church (or the Scriptures).
The second benefit of this book is that it sets the groundwork for productive talks between Eastern Orthodox and Lutherans. For the Orthodox, God's economic dealings with humans in Christ extend far beyond the satisfaction model of the West. Following the Scriptures and the Fathers, the Orthodox stress that God became man that man might become God. For the Orthodox, the humanity's end and purpose is theosis, or deification. Union With Christ deals explicitly with this theme in Luther, and so opens up a welcome path for dialogue.
Other books of similar interest include: Salvation in Christ: A Lutheran-Orthodox Dialogue by John Meyendorff (Editor), et al; Heaven on Earth: A Lutheran-Orthodox Odyssey by Robert Tobias; Christus Victor by Gustaf Aulen; Common Ground, by Jordan Bajis; and On the Incarnation, by Saint Athanasius.
Interesting reading.
Different from traditional Luther Theology.
Luther's quotes are worth the price of the book. His understanding of justification in terms of union with Christ is part of the "depths" I'm talking about.
The book gives a new and deep perspective on Luther and the interpretation of his concepts of salvation and Gods love. Easy to read and understand.
What is most fascinating about this book is the fact that deification or theosis becomes a crucial component of Luther's doctrine of justification. For too long, the idea of theosis has remained obscure and unknown within Western Christianity, while it is an important piece of Eastern Orthodox theology. Furthermore, this idea has it's roots in Patristic teaching and the idea itself is taught not only in the Scriptures, but in early Fathers such as Irenaeus, Origen, Athanasius, Chrysostom, and even Augustine. The Finnish interpretation is fascinating because it argues that Luther had more in common with the Eastern theologian Gregory Palamas, then he did with Aquinas or Calvin.
The main thrust of the Finnish view is that Jesus Christ is actually present in faith. This results in not just an extrinsic and forensic justification, the doctrine promulgated by the Reformers, but also results in an intrinsic renewal that actually makes the repentant sinner just. Thus, the Finnish view teaches both extrinsic and intrinsic renewal at justification, and not the common reformation of extrinsic justification alone. This both..and theology is basically the same teaching expounded by the early Fathers and is common in Patristic theology.
This understanding of justification corrects the later Lutheran teaching advocating only forensic justification and allows justification to be a gradual process, and not just a one time event. In addition, sanctification and justification become more closely related and not two separate and distinct phenomena that do not relate with each other. The common teaching of the Reformer's makes sanctification a result of justification and therefore one's works are only a product of one's justification, but not related to it. The Finnish view allows for an interrelation between justification and sanctification that makes our works, the ones performed by Christ present in our faith, justifying.
This book is important because it opens up new avenues of communication between the Orthodox and the Lutherans and allows for fruitful ecumenical discussion. Also, it will also be beneficial in the ecumenical dialogue between the Lutherans and the Catholic Church since theosis has not been completely ignored by the Church in the West. The only problem I have with this book is that the Reformation doctrine of sola fide is not described in detail, and no one takes the time to explain how the Finnish view can still accomodate this teaching. Overall, this is an excellent work and one I believe most Protestant's should take the time to read.
Is this provocative work primarily a product of investigation of Luther's thought or of endeavor to ecumenical dialogue? Although the authors of this book ardently assert that in Luther the notion of 'participation' and/or 'divinization' is a central leitmotiv, it doesn't necessarily seem like that. The concept of sanctification is mentioned more frequently than that of 'participation' and/or 'divinization' in the works of Luther. And the more, while we can find incessantly remarks about sanctification from his pre-Reformation era to post-Reformation one, the proofs on which the authors rely are not seemingly so consistent a leitmotiv in Luther's thought. Of course, Luther unceasingly stressed upon the importance of the presence of God, but there is some difficulty to equate it automatically with the notion of 'participation' and/or 'divinization.' Luther seems much more interested in emphasizing 'esse-ad' aspect than 'esse-in' aspect to avoid danger of medieval scholastic ontology. His stress upon the presence of God is much more affected by his peculiar eschatological thought than concern about 'being' that has been accentuated throughout this book by the various authours. So, while we may agree there is a similarity between Luther's thought and Eastern Orthodox in 'participation' and/or 'divinization,' there is a considerable difficulty to think that it is his central leitmotiv that governs all other thought in Luther. In spite of such a defect, this is the book one must read if he want to get new insight in Luther scholarship. In my opinion, it is inevitable for any serious Luther reader. While Luther by Oberman is still remained unsurpassed and unrivalled, this work can be regarded as second only to Oberman's work in recent Luther scholarship.