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Jesus the Eternal Son: Answering Adoptionist Christology
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Jesus the Eternal Son: Answering Adoptionist Christology

by

Eerdmans 2017

Runs on Windows, Mac and mobile.
$15.99

Overview

Adoptionism—the idea that Jesus is portrayed in the Bible as a human figure who was adopted as God’s son at his baptism or resurrection—has been commonly accepted in much recent scholarship as the earliest explanation of Jesus’s divine status. In this book Michael Bird draws that view into question with a thorough examination of pre-Pauline materials, the Gospel of Mark, and patristic sources.

Engaging critically with Bart Ehrman, James Dunn, and other scholars, Bird demonstrates that a full-fledged adoptionist Christology did not emerge until the late second century. As he delves into passages often used to support the idea of an early adoptionist Christology, including Romans 1:3–4 and portions of the speeches in Acts, Bird persuasively argues that early Christology was in fact incarnational, not adoptionist. He concludes by surveying and critiquing notable examples of adoptionism in modern theology.

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Key Features

  • Addresses the argument that Jesus was adopted as God’s son at his baptism or resurrection
  • Engages with the work of other scholars
  • Maintains an incarnational view of Jesus

Contents

Christology and Christian Origins

  • The Birth of Christology
  • Adoptionism
  • The Goal of this Book

Appointed the Son of God by Resurrection from the Dead

  • The Son of God in Power: Romans 1:3-4
  • This Jesus Made Lord and Messiah: Acts 2:36 (with 5:31 and 13:33)
  • Conclusion

The Gospel of Mark, Monotheism, and Deification

  • Debates about Markan Christology
  • Exalted Heroes and Deified Emperors in the Greco-Roman World
  • Monotheism and Divinized Humans
  • Conclusion

The Gospel of Mark and the Son of God

  • The Markan Baptismal Scene
  • Mark's Divine Christology
  • Parallels and Markan Christology
  • Conclusion

How Jesus Got Adopted in the Second Century

  • The Shepherd and His Two Sons
  • The Ebionites: Poor Man's Christology
  • Theodotus of Byzantium: Jesus Finally Gets Adopted
  • Conclusion

Adoptionism: Then and Now

Product Details

About the Author

Michael F. Bird is lecturer in theology at Ridley Melbourne College of Mission and Ministry. He is the author of several books, including Jesus and the Origins of the Gentile Mission, The Saving Righteousness of God, and with James Crossley, How Did Christianity Begin?

Sample Pages from the Print Edition