This volume offers a careful exploration of doxological theology in volume III of Karl Barth’s Church Dogmatics. In 1949, Karl Barth confidently upheld a high doctrine of divine providence, maintaining God’s control of every event in history. His argument is at once cheerful, but also defiant in the face of a Europe that is war-weary and doubtful of the full sovereignty of God.
Barth’s movement to praise God shows his affinity for the Reformed theological tradition. While Barth often distances himself from his Calvinist predecessors in significant ways, he sees his own view of providence to be a positive reworking of the Reformed position in order to maintain what he understands as its most important insights: the praiseworthiness of the God of providence and the doxology of the creature. Doxological Theology investigates how the theologian, in response to the praiseworthy God of the Reformed tradition, is expected to pray his or her way through the doctrine of providence.
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Of the making of books about Barth’s theology there appears to be no end. All credit to Christopher Green, then, for focusing on a relatively unexplored corner of Barth’s thought—his doctrine of providence—and for doing it the way Barth does it, using the Lord’s Prayer as an interpretive framework. This is an exceptionally close reading of Barth’s Christological correction of a central pillar of Reformed theology.
—Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Blanchard Professor of Theology, Wheaton College Graduate School
In this book Green offers a careful and insightful exploration of volume III of Barth’s Church Dogmatics—one of the most important yet one of the least investigated parts of Barth’s corpus. Green’s exposition and analysis proceeds with both a deep sensitivity for the internal coherence of the rather diverse topics covered in [volume] III and a firm awareness of the broader content and form of Barth’s theology. At times creative, at times controversial, Green is always engaging. This book is destined to become a necessary conversation-point for any future work in this research area.
—Paul T. Nimmo, lecturer in Systematic theology and Christian ethics, University of Edinburgh
Barth scholars will be engaged with Green’s adjudication of the various related issues vis-à-vis the relevant secondary literature, especially in the footnotes . . . a range of other readers, from postliberals to evangelicals and even Pentecostals, will appreciate the fundamentally performative theology of providence presented in this excellent first book.
—Religious Studies Review