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How are We Saved?: The Understanding of Salvation in the Orthodox Tradition Paperback – 10 Oct 2008


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Amazon.com: 11 reviews
31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Excellent Overview of Salvation 16 Sept. 2000
By Gilbert Gandenberger - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Bp. Kallistos Ware understands Scripture and our salvation. He presents the Eastern Orthodox approach to salvation from both the theological and personal perspectives. Does an excellent job of illustrating the nuances of classical Protestant and Roman Catholic views and how the Eastern Orthodox stance expands and deepens these approaches. He does not work to disagree with these other churches, but to balance and clarify their theology.
This book is very useful as a starting point for personal meditation, and group discussions. The structure is topic -- bullet points. There are no lengthy paragraphs. Every sentence is crystal-clear.
A background in theology is helpful to understand the depth of the issues he is addressing, but this is not a dry theological theoretical tome. The book leads you to worship, the essential work of all good theological thought.
I've bought copies for all my children to read, all the leaders in my church, and will now be using it for a high school interdenominational Bible study group. I have found it to be a very usable and helpful book because of the simple structure and clarity of the writing.
Can't recommend any book on this subject more highly than this one!
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
salvation is multifacited 16 May 2000
By matt - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Bishop Kallistos Ware of Oxford presents 44 views of salvation according to the Scriptures and the Church Fathers. The format consists of short chapters which focus on specific elements of salvation. Topics include: Salvation as theosis (deification), exchange, process, synergism, the absolute necessity of grace, original sin, St. Augustine, the Fall, sacraments, salvation as personal but not individualistic, and many, many more topics. Ware's use of primary sources is helpful for those who wish to do further study. If you are intersted in Eastern Orthodoxy, this is a great book to begin with. If you are already familiar with the tradition, then "How are we Saved?" will refresh your memory and I'm sure teach you something new. Other books of interest include: "The Orthodox Church" and "The Orthodox Way," both by Bishop Kallistos Ware. "Common Ground," by Jordan Bajis, contains a detailed analysis of the Eastern approach to theology, Church, salvation, etc and is very detailed and informative. As well, all Vladimir Lossky books are insightful in this regard. Lossky is, however, difficult at times for those unfamiliar with technical terminology. John Meyendorff's, "Byzantine Theology," is excellent for further, detailed study of Eastern Orthodoxy.
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Theology prayerfully conveyed 10 Nov. 2000
By D. Tukey - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This little book is almost like reading poetry. Aside from longer quotations, sentences are not crammed together into paragraphs. Rather, sentences are broken into clauses, each clause on a separate line separated by a few spaces. The result is that, as you read, each clause sinks in, the individual words and phrases matter. Your conceptual mind slows down a bit and the theology becomes poetry and prayer. The formatting is itself part of the Orthodox message: religion is a mystery (=something more) that no words convey; the spaces between the words, the silences between what we say, the pauses between our actions -- there is God. The content is itself a splendid synopsis of the main points of Orthodox faith by a well-known representative of that tradition (see his "The Orthodox Way").
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
The Theological Buffet (Not Denny's!) 11 April 2004
By matt - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
When questioned about theological perspectives and "which one is better?", Bishop Kallistos often responds with a story about a buffet line on the Queen Elizabeth ocean liner. On the voyage, at every meal, you could eat not just french toast for breakfast, but steak or fish. And for dinner you could also enjoy your favorite breakfast meals. His point is that theologians need not limit their perspectives to only one `meal', but rather they ought to eat from the buffet that is laid before them. (I could have used my own experiences at Denny's for such a story but that isn't as neat and it is also a bit gross!)
Approaching the theology of salvation begs for a similar perspective. Anslemian or Thomastic perspectives have their place, but they can tend to push out the eastern and other western perspectives.
Bishop Kallistos Ware of Oxford presents 44 views of salvation according to the Scriptures and the Church Fathers. The format consists of short chapters that focus on specific elements of salvation. Topics include: Salvation as theosis (deification), exchange, process, synergism, the absolute necessity of grace, original sin, St. Augustine, the Fall, sacraments, salvation as personal but not individualistic, and many, many more topics. Ware's use of primary sources is helpful for those who wish to do further study.
If you are interested in Eastern Orthodoxy, this is a great book to begin with. If you are already familiar with the tradition, then "How are we Saved?" will refresh your memory and I'm sure teach you something new. Other books of interest include: "The Orthodox Church" and "The Orthodox Way," both by Bishop Kallistos Ware. "Common Ground," by Jordan Bajis, contains a detailed analysis of the Eastern approach to theology, Church, salvation, etc and is very detailed and informative. As well, all Vladimir Lossky books are insightful in this regard. Lossky is, however, difficult at times for those unfamiliar with technical terminology. John Meyendorff's, "Byzantine Theology," is excellent for further, detailed study of Eastern Orthodoxy.
For Western perspectives check out the following: Christus Victor by Aulen, Union With Christ ed. by Braaten.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
I keep reaching for this small book, over and over. 14 Sept. 2012
By Dan E. Nicholas - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is a favorite of mine this last decade and growing more favorite all the time. I'm learning that Protestants and Catholics and Orthodox have major differences in how they view salvation. That's what Bp. Ware addresses here, keying on salvation as a process that in the tradition of the Eastern Church never ends. That's a far cry from the Jesus Come Into My Heart Amen salvation I was introduced to as a teen.

Seven years running we've had an Orthodox Book Club in our town, having read some 35 titles by now. I got into a bit of a tiff last week with a friend over the strong differences in opinion over controversial book and teaching: the Aerial Tollhouses; a metaphor about what happens after death. In my debate with my friend I kept coming back to this little book by Bp. Kallistos Ware on Soteriology: how we are saved. I can't count the times I've pulled it off the shelf as a reference to give context to other books and conversations about East/West. How one views salvation colors so much of the rest of our personal theology and practice, what we like and hate about church, faith, religion; what we believe and what we do.

OK, so How Are We Saved-The Understanding of Salvation in the Orthodox Tradition is more of an outline than a book. So what's wrong with that? I would not be quick to diminish its clarity and power to convey a main point; that the East and West view salvation differently. Way differently.

I came to faith some 50 years ago seeking salvation; wanted something broken inside me fixed, healed, saved. I had questions about my Fire Insurance Conversion to Evangelical Protestantism and its take on Christianity. After about a decade I wanted deep as well as wide. My faith was a mile wide; but I feared it was an inch thick. I had the simple Gospel story, knowing Jesus, being forgiven. But this book explained the next 14 years leading up to my conversion to Eastern Orthodoxy: the process of salvation, deification, theosis; what I was saved from and for. From Augustine to Martin Luther in the 16th century, soteriology poses pivotal trailhead questions. In 70 pages Ware goes with what I now believe, from the theology of what our tradition teaches to how I treat my neighbor-from faith to practice. Nice. Maybe more books should be 70 pages.

Wanna grow your brain and heart; get more on purpose with your praxis? Own this book.
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