THE NEW ESSENCE OF CHRISTIANITY by William Hamilton

THE NEW ESSENCE OF CHRISTIANITY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Don't go away if you were looking for a boiled down version of the Christian Faith in its simplest essentials. Author William Hamilton will say to you there is no such thing. Rather, he will torpedo the whole idea that you can proceed from philosophy to theology to faith. Rather, he will say there are just a few things we know and are sure of, and from these we must go on to work out the rest of the faith as best we may. Take, for instance, the idea that Jesus is divine. This does not mean that we know all there is to know about God, and Jesus is like Him. Rather, it means that we know practically nothing about God, and everything we do know we know only because we have known Jesus face to face and still know Him within the fellowship of the Church. Mr. Hamilton almost suggests that what we know about God in the Old Testament is irrelevant, because the God of floods, pillars of fire, Red Sea deliverance, and fire for Elijah seems to have withdrawn from the scene of human existence, and a quite different kind of Person remains who summons us by his weakness, challenges us by his abdication, and renews us by his forgiveness and acceptance. With Jesus Christ a new relationship with God began which can best be understood under the simile of marriage, and then probably only by the happily married. This is a rebel book, but for that reason all the more compelling to the seminarian or college man who may find it expressing exactly what he has been trying to say. Nor will it hurt the well seasoned layman who must ever contend with the fact that at the heart of his faith is a Christ on a Cross, not a throne, and a God who emptied himself that we might be full.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1961
Publisher: Association Press