Discipleship for all believers: Christian ethics and the by Philip Lemasters, Ron Sider

By Philip Lemasters, Ron Sider

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Serious discipleship, exuding the joy of the resurrection, is the vocation of all believers. DONALD B. KRAYBILL, DIRECTOR YOUNG CENTER FOR THE STUDY OF ANABAPTIST AND PIETIST GROUPS ELIZABETHTOWN COLLEGE ELIZABETHTOWN, PENNSYLVANIA Page 13 Preface I wish to express my gratitude to a number of people whose efforts have made this book possible. The final product has benefited from criticism of earlier drafts of the entire manuscript by Professors Stanley Hauerwas, Kenneth Surin, Geoffrey Wainwright, and Frederick Herzog.

Yet the central organizing principle, which holds these divergent concerns together, is precisely the temporal view of eschatology. It enables us to see the resurrection of Jesus as the beginning of a new age of God's kingdom, which one day will consummate in God's final victory over 'all sin and death. The acceptance of this eschatology leads logically to certain ecclesiological and moral commitments. Hence, rather than simply a collection of five essays on various theological and moral issues, the book advances one central Page 20 point: a proper view of eschatology leads naturally to determinate views of the Christian life and the social location and moral analysis that are appropriate to it.

Bultmann takes this theological tack because he wants to affirm Christian faith and the relevance of Jesus' teaching while allowing that "it is impossible ... 30 Implicit in Bultmann's claim is the assumption that an eschatological worldview oriented toward the future of a coming reign of God cannot be the worldview of moderns. Bultmann makes this assertion because his theological project focuses primarily on the relationship of the modern individual to God. 31 Bultmann employs the method of demythologizing to recover Page 26 the timeless truth of Jesus' preaching of the kingdom in a way congenial to contemporary sensibilities.

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