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Being Reconciled: Ontology and Pardon (Routledge Radical Orthodoxy) Paperback – 13 Feb 2003

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"John Milbank is unquestionably among the most sophisticated voices in the whole world of modern theology. With an enormous range of reference, a style of great passion and grace, and a depth of commitment to classical Christian belief, he is as refreshing as he is challenging. These essays confirm his stature."-Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury "John Milbank shows us how valuable the classical Christian tradition is as a means for overcoming the nihilism that is choking modern thought and culture. "Being Reconciled is well worth the effort.."-Bryan Hollon, Baylor University--"Perspectives in Religious Studies

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Traditionally, in Greek, Christian and Jewish thought evil has been denied any positive foothold in being. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4 reviews
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
A Theology of Gift 17 Dec. 2003
By Tedd Steele - Published on
Format: Paperback
As an avid reader of theology, this is the most difficult book I have read. Those not well read in theology and philosophy should begin elsewhere. It seems that Milbank writes so that readers will have to struggle with the book nearly as much as he has obviously struggled with the issues it presents. That said, this is a very profound work that opens many avenues of research. Milbank is committed to recasting the orthodox conception of God into our "postmodern" context. Thus he works from the assumption that the classical attributes of God (omniscience, omnipotence, immutibility, etc.) are true. In this work, Milbank explores the category of "gift" as a way of understanding God's interaction in the world, specifically in terms of forgiveness. The book moves from an understanding of evil as privation, to the life, death, and resurrection of Christ, and finally to the church and interaction with contemporary culture. Along the way, Milbank draws heavily on the work of many theologians and philosophers. I do not agree with all that is presented in this book, but it most definately caused me to think more critically about the positions I hold.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The Archbishop was right 17 Mar. 2006
By Wilson Pruitt - Published on
Format: Paperback
Rowan Williams writes an endorsement for this book calling it challenging and I think that that is about as accurate as it gets. This isn't so much a coherent theology as a provocative theology which has its faults, but is quite challenging. While for the most part it feels as if Milbank thinks the Fall happened, not in eden, but at the University of Paris in 1300, he still has some striking things to say about the present. Though I disagree with a good part of what he says (e.g., Christian pacifism is more violent than killing while defending your friends), there is a good part of it that is rightfully unsettling.

Like I said, this is not an absolutely coherent theology so it is easy to pick away at it, and Milbank is not the most lucid prose stylist so it is also easy to get frustrated with it, but it is worth the read. I wish Milbank would stick to working through texts, his strongest attribute as a theologian(e.g., Theology and Social Theory) and the strongest part of this work, but when he lets himself loose over the whole of Christian Tradition, he is still, as Rowan Williams puts it, challenging.
6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Heavy, heavy Philosophical-Theological Study. 8 April 2004
By Richard C. Woodhouse - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is very difficult reading, at least for me, but the subject matter is so important, that its worth the effort. John Milbank opens up many insights for further study by Christian Scholars. I must admit that some of it is over my head, I had to repeatedly refer to various dictionaries, and still did not find the needed definitions for some of the words used, in the text. Still I got the gist of most of what He is saying, I think? In the chapter on the Incarnation, He goes somewhat toward an answer to the vexing question of the impossible fact that according to Christian Teaching the Human Race did Fall,despite being in communion with the perfect infinite Creator. He goes into the possibility of forgiveness being possible because God did in fact become a Human Being in Jesus Christ, linking the forgiveness offered by God through the Deified Humanity of Jesus. This also has implications for Escatalogy, in how this might prevent the Fall from happening again a second time, a sort of second impossibility. Whew!!! Like I said this is tough going for just an interested layman, My understanding of Professor Milbank's book, may be way off. I intend to reread it several times, like I said the subject matter is worth such an effort. Thanks for listening. Sincerely Richard Woodhouse. Bradford PA
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Unorthodox 16 Aug. 2012
By ChadL - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book is written for an esoteric group and is not readable for many. Milbank does a good job presenting his complex philosophy on the work of Christ. However, his view is essentially that evil has no ontological substance. Therefore, Christ did not die to take on sin or do away with evil, but rather to identify with us as homo sacer, or an outcast. Essentially, his take is the unorthodox (at least for Western churches) position that the cross is much more about moral example and mystical identification than substitution, penal satisfaction or cleansing.
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