Christianity in Evolution
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|Format:||Paperback, 208 pages|
|Published In: ||United States, 01 August 2011|
Evolution has provided a new understanding of reality, with revolutionary consequences for Christianity. In an evolutionary perspective the incarnation involved God entering the evolving human species to help it imitate the trinitarian altruism in whose image it was created and counter its tendency to self-absorption. Primarily, however, the evolutionary achievement of Jesus was to confront and overcome death in an act of cosmic significance, ushering humanity into the culminating stage of its evolutionary destiny, the full sharing of God's inner life. Previously such doctrines as original sin, the fall, sacrifice, and atonement stemmed from viewing death as the penalty for sin and are shown not only to have serious difficulties in themselves, but also to emerge from a Jewish culture preoccupied with sin and sacrifice that could not otherwise account for death. The death of Jesus on the cross is now seen as saving humanity, not from sin, but from individual extinction and meaninglessness. Death is now seen as a normal process that affect all living things and the religious doctrines connected with explaining it in humans are no longer required or justified. Similar evolutionary implications are explored affecting other subjects of Christian belief, including the Church, the Eucharist, priesthood, and moral behavior.
About the Author
Jack Mahoney is emeritus professor of moral and social theology in the University of London and a former principal of Heythrop College, University of London. He is the author of several books, including The Making of Moral Theology: A Study of the Roman Catholic Tradition.
Table of Contents
Introduction1. Accepting EvolutionCatholic Responses to EvolutionEvolution and Christian EthicsOther Theological Responses to EvolutionTheological Implications of Evolution 2. Evolution, Altruism, and the Image of GodUnderstanding the Image of GodThe Evolutionary Challenge of AltruismImaging the Divine AltruismA Theology of Altruism 3. The Evolutionary Achievement of JesusSaving Humanity from DeathDispensing with Original SinFinding a New ExplanationBaffling Death 4. Incarnation without the FallWhat if Adam Had Not Sinned?Christ as Lord of Creation "For Our Salvation" What Kind of God?A Poor Alternative 5. Seeking a New ParadigmProcess Theology and Kenotic Theology Accepting the UnavoidableMoral Evils and Human Freedom6. The Church and the Eucharist in EvolutionWho Shall Be Saved?The Evolving Church"Through Christ Our Lord"The Eucharist in Evolution The Evolutionary Community 7. Theology in EvolutionEvolutionary Impact on Other Traditional BeliefsEvolutionary Ethics"Development of Doctrine"?Demythologizing DeathSaving Sacrifice?Straining FaithSumming Up BibliographyIndexes
"This challenging and readable book is the work of a scholar who is theologically well-informed, aware of previous and contemporary discussions of the need for theological development in view of evolutionary science, and skillful in suggesting alternatives to traditional formulations of Christian teaching. Mahoney's work should stimulate much fruitful theological discussion. Strongly recommended." -- John F. Haught, senior fellow in science and religion, Woodstock Theological Center, Georgetown University "This is a very important work in the challenges it places to the traditional interpretation of Church dogmas, especially those to do with original sin, the image of God, and God's purpose in Creation and in the Incarnation. It provides a very good historical review of various dogmas before reinterpreting each dogma in the light of scientific evolution. I do not know of any other work that does this so thoroughly." -- George V. Coyne, SJ, president, Vatican Observatory Foundation "Jack Mahoney's Christianity in Evolution presents a courageous and intellectually honest attempt to face the theological implications of the undeniable fact of human evolution. His carefully crafted assessment of various evolutionary accounts of morality for Christian ethics is a gem of concise analysis. His novel way of highlighting the altruistic dimensions of the imago Dei, Jesus' command of neighbor-love, and Trinitarian communion challenges Christian ethicists to take more seriously the theological basis of their discipline. [This book] represents a new stage in the encounter of theology with evolutionary thinking, but it should be read not only by theologians but by any Christian seeking to develop an intellectually engaged faith." -- Stephen J. Pope, professor of theological ethics, Boston College
|Publisher: ||Georgetown University Press|
|Dimensions: ||21.0 x 14.0 x 1.0 centimeters (0.30 kg)|