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Telling God's Story

Telling God's Story
Bible, Church and Narrative Theology


  • Date Published: September 1999
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521665155


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About the Authors
  • This book presents narrative theology as radically orthodox. It is orthodox because it is in the tradition of all those who maintain the priority of the story of Jesus, as it is sacramentally performed in the Church; and radical because it eschews all modern attempts to found Christian faith on some other story, such as that of reason, critical history or human consciousness. Acknowledging the indeterminacy and textuality of human existence, Telling God's Story presents the Christian life as a truly postmodern venture: the groundless enactment of God's 'future now'. In the epilogue this book focuses on the Eucharist as the sacramental site in which the story and body of Christ consumes and is consumed. Through this bodily telling and consumption the Church is enabled to receive again God's gift of return and to be the telling of God's story, once more.

    • An introduction to narrative theology and a demonstration of how this theology is both orthodox and radical
    • Uses developments in contemporary philosophy and literary theory, in particular the work of Lyotard and Derrida, to further its arguments
    • Lively and imaginative writing style
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Deftly Loughlin weaves his theological voices. He writes here, as always, with great skill, imagination and conviction … Loughlin has a fertile and imaginative theological mind - the world is about to be swept back into the Word.' Graham Ward, Theology

    '… an excellent account of much of what is going on in contemporary theology, both British and American … Whatever one's opinion on reading this intriguing and noteworthy book, it is one of the debates which will fuel British theology for the forseeable future.' Gareth Jones, Reviews in Religion and Theology

    'Just when some might have thought that 'God's Story' and 'narrative theology' had become ritual cant, Gerard Loughlin has written a book that summarizes the issues from a new perspective, argues against standard objections, and advances the discussion in imaginative ways - imaginative not least because they are presented with such modesty … Loughlin's book will be essential reading for all those interested in the bearing of biblical narrative on church and post-modern world …'. James Buckley, Modern Theology

    'Clear and informative presentations especially of the work of the Yale theologians serve the unfolding of a distinctive theological vision … elaborated with force, clarity and sophistication.' Francis Watson, Scottish Journal of Theology

    ' … an original and eloquent sized new step in the research program of postliberal theology.' William C. Placher, The Journal of Religion

    'With this book Gerard Loughlin makes a welcome and important contribution. It is both a more theological and a more critical work than much earlier 'narrative theology'. Post-modern theory becomes, in the author's hands, a preparation for the gospel, and the gospel announced is one of promise and gift.' Janet Martin Soskice, University of Cambridge

    'This is a very good book … Deeply, sometimes movingly, Catholic in inspiration and sensibility, it will repay reading for years to come.' Fergus Kerr, The Tablet

    'Telling God's Story is engaging and refreshing'. Stephen W. Need, The Times Literary Supplement

    'Gerard Loughlin gives us an extraordinarily instructive theology, redolent with the kind of nuance and profundity which are required by anyone who takes seriously the story of Jesus as God's anointed. He ranges widely across the contemporary intellectual scene, and brings an exciting and ingenious theological programme to life. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.' Stanley Hauerwas, Duke University

    '... an attractive presentation of the church in the postmodern world as a community which embodies and performs the story of Jesus, particularly in the eucharist, 'a narrative that enfolds the participants within the biblical story …'. David Horrell, Expository Times

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 1999
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521665155
    • length: 284 pages
    • dimensions: 217 x 138 x 16 mm
    • weight: 0.335kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Preface to the paperback edition
    Prologue: at the end of the book:
    1. Future now
    Part I. Consuming Text:
    2. Around Christ
    3. Character/circumstance/community
    Part II. Reading and Writing:
    4. Making it plain
    5. True stories
    Part III. Linkages:
    6. The event of God
    7. Only love
    Epilogue: in the middle of the story
    8. Eating the word

  • Author

    Gerard Loughlin, University of Durham

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