For two thousand years, Christian theologians have struggled to explain the believer's union with Christ. What sort of union is it? How can it be fully described? This book is an attempt to join the conversation to explore exactly what it means to be in union with Christ. This book will argue that the believer's union with Christ can rightly be presented as a third type of perichoresis. Perichoresis is a word that describes the way the persons of the Trinity interrelate, without losing their essential oneness nor without being absorbed into each other. In short, the doctrine of perichoresis preserves the unity and diversity within the Godhead. It is also used to describe the hypostatic union of the divine and human in Christ. In Perichoretic Salvation, James Gifford argues that the union of the believer and Christ is a relationship of the same kind, though of a third type. Arguing from a perspective that is rooted biblically, historically, and theologically, the book will allow the union to be explained more fully than in the past while remaining within the bounds of what the church has taught over the centuries. It may prove to be a basis for understanding the work of Christ afresh for the twenty-first century. ""James Gifford has rendered scholars and pastors a service that should result in a richer understanding of the nature of union with Christ that they should then pass on to the larger Christian community. Finding an appropriate word to describe what it means to be 'in Christ' has been a struggle for biblical interpreters for years. Perichoresis is a word largely unknown outside of a very limited circle of scholars, but Gifford argues persuasively that its meaning accurately describes the type of union a believer enjoys with Christ. As he unfolds that meaning, believers will have more adequate words to understand and describe the relationship they enjoy. I commend a careful consideration of this important book."" -John S. Hammett Professor of Systematic Theology Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary ""The New Testament presents union with Christ as a central feature of soteriology. Yet generally evangelicals have not fully appreciated the implications of the concept. Gifford's clear and helpful work makes real strides in addressing this shortcoming."" -Ken Keathley Dean of the Faculty and Professor of Theology Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary ""Jim's thesis-developed using careful biblical, theological and historical analysis-is not widely understood and acknowledged, particularly in evangelical circles, although it ties in nicely to revived interest in the Trinity and Christology. His thesis-refreshingly relevant to nurture of Christ life-is formulated clearly, comprehensively and, I believe, quite convincingly."" -Bruce Demarest Professor of Christian Formation Denver Seminary James D. Gifford Jr. is an assistant professor with Liberty University Religion Online and a graduate of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina.
- Christian theology
- Publication Date:
- Wipf & Stock Publishers
- Country of origin:
- United States
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