Thursday, March 17, 2011

On Being a Theologian of the Cross: Reflections on Luther's Heidelberg Disputation, 1518, by Gerhard O. Forde


An excellent and challenging read. Forde summarizes and explains, well, Luther's Heidelberg Disputation. Specifically, he explores the tension between being a theologian of glory (works) and a theologian of the cross (grace/faith) and the merits and risks of each position. Forde is definitely a little denser than many modern Christian writers--some of the passages need to be re-read a few time to really 'get' his points. Still, I've no doubt he's a much easier read than the original Disputation, so I'm not complaining. I'm still wrapping my head around some of Luther's theological positions (as a recovering theologian of glory, some of this stuff is still really counter-intuitive), and many of Forde's/Luther's statements seem rather hyperbolic. I suspect this means I am not yet fully a theologian of the cross.

This is definitely a book that would, I imagine, improve upon re-reading (and re-re-reading, for that matter). There's a lot in here, especially for such a short book, and since I know I am constantly being tempted to embrace the theology of glory, I will need to revisit Forde often.

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