Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Martin Hengel on Biblical Theology

"From this [Jesus as Messiah] flow consequences for theological reflection as well; for, as the messianic bringer of salvation, he is the fundamental of our faith, who fulfilled the Old Covenant, and breathed the breath of life into the New. His person and work charge us with the task of a 'whole' biblical theology that above all fully realizes its Jewish heritage, a biblical theology that does not eradicate the lines between the Old and New, but properly defines them. I could also express this in the words of Paul with which I began: the Jew, Jesus of Nazareth, became the Messiah of Israel in order to fulfil the promises made to the fathers, and he became for us, who have come afterwrad from all nations of the earth, 'the author of our salvation', because we experience in him what the love of God is, that we might, for the sake of such grace, praise as our Father, the God of Israel and Father of Jesus Christ."
- Martin Hengel, "Jesus, the Messiah of Israel", Studies in Early Christology (Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1995), p. 72.

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