God's history in the theology of Jürgen Moltmann
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It is true that Jürgen Moltmann does not systematically construct a theology of God's history. However, his theological discussion of different themes and doctrines shows that God has a history. Therefore, the aim of this thesis is to give an analysis to his theology of God's history and historicity. Moltmann starts his theology by contrasting God's self- revelation in the promise with that in the epiphany of the eternal present. Chapter 1 traces revelation as epiphany in the Canaanite religion, Parmenides' philosophy and contemporary doctrine of revelation and analyses its analogical characteristic. Revelation as promise is scrutinised in chapter 2 so as to display its dialectical structure, significance and offer a background for further understanding of God's self-revelation in the Christ event. The analogical principle of knowledge and its use in Platonic philosophy and Thomas Aquinas' natural theology which Moltmann heavily criticises is discussed in chapter 3. Its ontological and epistemological character that makes God's self-revelation and being ahistorical is to be emphasised. In contrast to the analogical principle Moltmann proposes the dialectical principle which is embodied in the Christ event. Its meaning and significance for God's history is the subject of chapter 4. Chapter 5 and 6 engage in Moltmann's revolution in the relationship between God's historical act in the cross event and his inner being, the economic trinity and the immanent trinity. Chapter 5 clarifies the relationship of the cross event to the inner divine life and relevant criticism while chapter 6 explicates the primary determination of God's inner life to his outer act in history. Moreover, God as love in Moltmann's theology is given a detailed examination in regard to God's self- limitation and self-de-limitation in eternity and in history. Moltmann's understanding of God's history in the Christ event creates conditions for historical transformation of this world. This is discussed in chapter 7. This thesis is concluded in chapter 8 with an analytical summary of Moltmann's approach to God's history, the character of God's history and God's historicity, and an appreciative appraisal of Moltmann's theological breakthroughs and insights.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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