JONATHAN EDWARDS AND THE LIFE OF GOD

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JONATHAN EDWARDS AND THE LIFE OF GOD:
TOWARDS AN EVANGELICAL THEOLOGY OF PARTICIPATION

Jonathan Edwards and the Life of God aims to offer a retrieval of Edwards’s theology of participation for contemporary evangelical theology. It critically expounds and elucidates the concept of participation in God, or theosis, in Edwards’s Trinitarian theology as it relates to around three unions: the three persons of the Trinity, the hypostatic union of the divine and human in Christ, and that of believers with Christ. This volume brings Edwards’s rich theological work into conversation with the patristic (Augustine and the Cappadocians) and Reformed traditions (Calvin and, especially, Barth), in order to construct with Edwards a more hopeful, liberating, and truly human version of Christian life. Consideration of the life of God in Edwards thus moves “beyond” in two senses: first, perspectives on participation beyond those of Edwards from Barth, Volf, the Cappadocian Fathers, and others in the tradition, are engaged in order to locate and critique and enhance it; and secondly, in the sense that, as Hastings argues, participation leads, for Edwards and others, into the “beyond” of the beatific vision—the glory of God, which is the hope that, amongst other things, motivates the Christian life.

CONTENTS

Acknowledgements xi

Chronology of the Primary Works of Edwards xv

Introduction 1

  1. A journey of Participation 19

  2. A Journey into the Union of the Trinity 61

  3. A Journey yet Deeper into the Union of the Trinity 89

  4. A Journey into the Bond of the Trinity: The Spirit in the Trinity 153

  5. Journey from Heaven to Earth: The Spirit Honored in the Incarnation of Christ 201

  6. Journey of Human Participation in God: The Spirit Honored in the Union of the Saints with God 265

  7. Participation in the Spirit in Justification Sanctification or for Sanctification and Justification? 323

  8. Journey with Assurance? The Spirit Honored in the Assurance of Salvation in Believers 377

  9. Journey of Contemplative, Communal Intimacy towards Becoming Fully Human Persons in Christ 439

 

Bibliography 471

Index of Names 503

Index of Subjects 509