Exposé on the basic book of historical-narrative exegesis

Einführung in die historisch-narrative Exegese der Bibel von Andrew Perriman
The time has come. The revolutionary basic book comes to the analogue market as a printed version. The “new reading of the Bible” is finally in your hand!

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2500 words, reading time 13 minutes. | Here we go! The message of trans-Christianity enters the analogue stage. From a digital e-book here will now be a printed book in your hand. It will soon be available on the self-publishing market (order from me then). The new book series starts with:
Radically reread the Bible. Apocalyptic! nuPerspective Series, Volume 1: Basics

Or more precisely, This is how I formulated the title so far (see also cover image):
Helge Seekamp: “Radically rereading the Bible. Apocalyptic. An introduction to the historical-narrative exegesis of the Bible by Andrew Perriman." What is it about in brief? Here is my exposé so that you know the big picture and can say in your own words why this new book absolutely has to exist under heaven :-)

Order the book now from Epubli.com here!
€19.99 316 pages / Din A5, softcover
ISBN 978-3-758468-15-5 

Introduction

The book "Radically rereading the Bible. Apocalyptic." offers a revolutionary perspective on Christianity and the Bible. It introduces readers to a historical-narrative framework that makes the crisis of the Western Church understandable and develops a prophetic vision for the future of the churches. Here is an overview of the central themes of the book with the invitation to rethink traditional thought patterns in relation to a historically and narratively reconstructed other gospel.

outline

The book is divided into 11 chapters, each of which illuminates different aspects of the new view of Christianity. After the manifesto for the historical-narrative reading and the overview of the topic, it begins with a consideration of the New Testament story about Jesus and its political history. Then, basic theological beliefs about God, Jesus and justification — “the gospel” for short — are turned on their head. The importance of a credible prophetic story about the place of the church in the modern world is explored in the second part. The book proposes to invent a narrative theology that relates to the historical reality of the church after the end of Christianity's history. The crucial difference to classical theology is the role of eschatology for a post-Christian era. Eschatology is traditionally the doctrine of the “end of times” (last day, judgment, heaven). Perriman interprets the eschatology of the Bible as follows: In history, prophets predict an impending future, such as divine judgment, a political change, or the destruction of the world as it was known up to that point. This turns the end of times into a turning point in the real political world of the protagonists.

The protagonists

The protagonist of the book is a god who makes history. The goal of the gospel is not a mythical work of redemption in an otherworldly transcendence, but rather the strenuous announcement that the world as we know it will soon collapse. Because God wants it that way.

With this historical-narrative lens, the Englishman Andrew Perriman, who has been drawing attention to his new reading of the Holy Scriptures with his blog www.postost.net and various theological specialist books since 2012, reads the Holy Scriptures in a radically trans-mythical way - in other words, historically relevant. His achievement is to demonstrate for a theological specialist audience, scientists and also for theological laypeople and practitioners where the journey is heading with this new reading.

As an important player in the English-language “New Perspective on Paul” movement, he consistently develops the strictly Jewish-contextual interpretation in a politically apocalyptic manner with his historical-narrative exegesis. In this he is a student of Albert Einstein and his so-called “consistent eschatology”.

The result is astonishing because it allows for truly astonishingly new perspectives on Christianity and the teachings about God, Jesus, Christ (Messiah) and the Church, which revolutionizes the theology we use today.

Helge Seekamp, as a German translator and theological practitioner (as a pastor in the Protestant Reformed tradition), has selected and curated the 20 blog posts from over 1000 that could be interesting for introducing the historical-narrative method into the German-speaking world.

Genre and target group

The book belongs to the genre of basic theological literature and is aimed at a broad target group who are interested in the future of Christianity and the relevance of the Bible in the modern world. It appeals to both professionals and laypeople who are willing to question traditional thought patterns and explore new theological approaches. The language of the book itself is narrative in many chapters, so that believers who are open to an alternative theological perspective will also benefit from reading it.

It is interesting that an important expansion of the circle of readers is possible beyond the circle of Christian believers because the book questions the usual theological patterns, so that those who doubt and criticize the Christian faith in particular feel understood and could be invited to join them to see the critical image of the Bible and faith confirmed and to form a new, more plausible picture of the history of Christianity and dogma. Because the aim is not to sell a complete new dogma to readers, but rather to encourage them to think for themselves and rethink things, this new approach could inspire many to take the old sacred texts (differently) seriously in a new way. Perhaps, the authors hope, the new reading will also provide new, plausible answers to humanity's major issues, precisely because the spiritual experiences from past apocalypses also provide encouragement for today's apocalyptic horror scenarios of a coming climate catastrophe.

background

The book “Trans-Christianity Narrative” is part of the “Nuperspective” project, www.nuperspective.de. The aim is to use a construction of an OMEGACURESES to invite people whose faith is already in shards, in order to dialogically develop a new image, a trans-Christian image of faith in the 21st century, from the shards. In addition to the author/translator Helge Seekamp, a five-person team from different professions and perspectives is working together to develop a new spiritual form after the end of Christianity.

What is really special about this approach is that it offers an alternative to all classical theological justifications of the various schools and thus a unique perspective on Christianity and the Bible, beyond purely historical-critical questions. These research results are integrated, but then also transcended historically and narratively. The thrust of this new theology is: The previous mystical-speculative theology must be grounded again in real political history in which the God of Israel, YHWH, writes his history. What is important for the perception of God is that YHWH only reveals himself through the prophetic interpretations of events of the past, present and future, i.e. through the narratives of his believers that are convincing in their respective contexts.

Theological classification:

This approach shows theological history contacts with various theological thinkers and researchers

  • from the Jewish-Christian dialogue (e.g. Frank Crüsemann's hermeneutic approach of reading the New Testament from the perspective of the Old),
  • or the English exegetical “new perspective on Paul” Discussion (e.g. BJ Dunn or NT Wright)
  • but also that postcolonial-postmodern discussion like her e.g. B. is led in the “radical wing” of the emergent movement.
  • There are many similarities to the critical positions of Tilman Haberer (integral theology) and Klaus-Peter Jörns (farewell), but the logic of justification is completely different.

What all of these new thinkers have in common is that they question and rethink traditional thought patterns. Despite all the differences in how they approach and solve the task, they are aware of the urgency of developing a new theological perspective for the post-Christianity phase. The question is always: Are the arguments and justifications convincing?

Reading sample

An interesting reading sample for the broad group of interested parties includes an excerpt from Chapter 5.2 “Finally a better explanation: Hell, the unbiblical doctrine" (p. 163ff) or for the question of personal application a section from Chapter 8: “The narrative-historical reading of the New Testament: What's in it for me?“ and especially the sub-chapter:

“Personal Jesus—Relationship Building Requires Context.” The excerpt deepens the question of what practical consequences the historical-narrative approach might have for a grounded spirituality and how a relationship with Jesus can be built in a historical context.

The following reading sample extends over 4 standard pages on pages 209-212: The Coming of a “New World Order”: Why Jesus Wasn’t Wrong; Original July 13th 2011 | Andrew Perriman. Here is an excerpt:

“The typical objection to the topic of the return of Jesus is this:

The coming Kingdom of God, a new world order ruled by Israel through YHWH, is a simple concept that would have been a staple of Jewish thought in Jesus' day. It was promised in the Hebrew Bible and was what the Jews hoped for, whether they believed in an afterlife or not. It was key to the message of both Jesus and Paul.

But, they then argue, the expectation never materialized, which was a big problem. Jesus said that people who stand with him would see the kingdom of God coming, and Paul discouraged marriage because the world was “about to be transformed by this new kingdom.” So either they were wrong, or this coming “empire” must be seen as a metaphor for something else, something essentially spiritual and invisible.

How should we respond to this argument? All of this seems to me to be an overly restrictive black and white worldview.

I think we can take seriously the public, political form of the "Kingdom of God" described in the New Testament without dismissing the clear sense of urgency widely attributed to it. In other words, both Paul and Jesus spoke of imminent and foreseeable events and were right to do so.

The Jewish expectation, as Paul rightly points out, was that the pagan empires of Greece and Rome would be overthrown by YHWH and a “new world order” (the phrase has an unfortunate modern connotation) would be established. There, YHWH's people would no longer be marginalized and oppressed by pagan rule, but would "rule" under the righteous kingship of the Messiah. I would argue that this is exactly what happened when the Empire was converted to Christianity in the fourth century - as Wikipedia puts it: Theodosius promoted Nicene Trinitarianism in Christianity and Christianity in the Empire. On February 27, 380, he declared “Catholic Christianity” the only legitimate imperial religion, ending state support for traditional Roman religion.

Of course, traditional Jewish expectations were changed in some crucial respects by the Christian movement.

First, the Messiah did not overcome his enemies through violence, but through a faithful obedience of his followers that resulted in death (martyrs).

Second, the ecumenical (i.e. oikoumenē-wide or empire-wide) expansion of YHWH's rule entails the inclusion of non-Jews into the family of Abraham's descendants, making it a truly ecumenical and not merely nationalistic community.

Third, this renewed transnational community becomes the agent of the eschatological, epochal transition by willingly participating in the story of Jesus' death, resurrection and justification. The God of Israel is justified before the nations through the Christ-like faithfulness of the churches. Believers are convinced that the one true God, the Creator of heaven and earth, who called a people for himself in Abraham, raised Jesus from the dead and gave him the name that is above every name.

If we are willing to treat the language of Bible prophecy realistically rather than idealistically, as a reference to historical events which, albeit in exaggerated form, have had an immense impact on the experience and destiny of God's people, then it seems perfect to me It is appropriate to think that the New Testament hope for the coming “Kingdom of God” was historically effectively fulfilled in the emperor’s recognition of Jesus as Lord. There is no justification for spiritualizing this process of political-religious transformation. It is a clear fact of history that with the elevation of Christianity to the status of an imperial religion, the God of the “small, quarreling nation of Israel” was recognized as the God of the entire Greco-Roman world in place of the many gods (and God-men) of classical paganism .

It is unclear whether Jesus himself saw this far ahead. Since he was intensely concerned with the fate of Israel, the horizon of his future was shaped by the probable destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. As I explained in the post about the “Now and Not Yet” of the Kingdom of God, Jesus told his disciples that “there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Kingdom of God when it has come with power has come” (Mk. 9:1; cf. Lk. 9:26), prophetically with an eye on the powerful vindication of his teaching, which the events of the year 70 AD can represent. The disciples should understand the predicted national catastrophe as a sign that God is sovereignly intervening as king to judge his people on the one hand and usher in a new age on the other. So I think that Jesus was not at all mistaken when he said that some of his disciples would still live to see the coming of the Kingdom of God in all its power.

As the community of his followers spread throughout the Roman Empire to make these facts known to the various subjugated nations, another "eschatological" horizon appeared. When Paul says in the Areopagus that the true God, YHWH, is no longer willing to overlook the “ignorance” of the pagan world and that he “has appointed a day in which he will judge the oikoumenē in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed” (Acts 17:30-31). He has in mind, I would argue, a day of "wrath" or judgment when, concretely and historically, the old pagan system will be overthrown and Jesus installed as Lord. This belief is implicit in passages such as Romans 1:4 , which presuppose the Old Testament idea of the victory of the King of Israel over the nations; it is contained in the widespread Son of Man narrative; and it appears in apocalyptic texts such as 2 Thessalonians 2:5-10; 2:1–12 and in passages in Revelation that connect the fall of the oppressive city of Babylon (i.e., Rome) with the eventual fulfillment of the “kingdom of God” as a millennium (Rev. 11:15; 12:10– 12; 19, 6; 20, 4-6).”

The volume of the book

The book "Trans-Christianity Narrative" will have a volume of 328 standard pages of a scientific non-fiction book (15cm x 24cm) and therefore a demanding length. However, given the task of deconstructing all the usual theological lines of argument, this is also necessary in order to turn seemingly “wild theses” into well-thought-out, biblically and exegetically proven better justifications for the theology of the 21st century.

Overall, the author/translator hopes to provide a comprehensive insight into the revolutionary perspective of a historical-narrative reframing of the Christian faith. What is certainly exciting for the readers is the alternation of theological specialist information and passages with broad overview knowledge and here and there humorous top sentences such as: B. “Never leave the house without eschatology!” Curious minds can look forward to a captivating and unusual journey by offering a new perspective on Christianity and the Bible.

Open questions: Does the title work for you?

Titles and cover images must quickly attract attention and have an emotional spark. Which title works best (for you)?

Why not discuss your assessment in the comment field or give me a tip for an even better title from your point of view? Something that would tempt you to buy such theological ham (330 pages!) :-)

 

Order the book now from Epubli.com here!
€19.99 316 pages / Din A5, softcover
ISBN 978-3-758468-15-5 

 

Schreibe einen Kommentar

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