How God Became King
The Forgotten Story of the Gospels
By N. T. Wright
(HarperOne, Hardcover, 9780061730573, 304pp.)
Publication Date: March 1, 2012
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Foundational: The four gospels come directly from the ancient church and are among the primary sources for the church's teachings.
Familiar: Since Christian worship services began, a reading from the gospels has played a central role.
Studied: For over two hundred years scholars have challenged and defended the central claims of the gospels: miracles, historical accuracy, the divinity of Jesus, and more.
But Forgotten: Still, leading Bible scholar N. T. Wright reveals shocking news: We have all forgotten what the four gospels are about.
"Despite centuries of intense and heavy industry expended on the study of all sorts of features of the gospels," Wright writes, "we have often managed to miss the main thing that they, all four of them, are most eager to tell us. What we need is not just a bit of fine-tuning, an adjustment here and there. We need a fundamental rethink about what the gospels are trying to tell us."
What Wright offers is an opportunity to confront these powerful texts afresh, as if we are encountering them for the first time. How God Became King reveals the surprising, unexpected, and shocking news of the gospels: this is the story of a new king, a new kind of king, a king who has changed everything, and a king who invites us to be part of his new world.
N. T. Wright is the former Bishop of Durham in the Church of England and one of the worlds leading Bible scholars. He is now serving as the chair of New Testament and Early Christianity at the School of Divinity at the University of St. Andrews. For twenty years Wright taught New Testament studies at Cambridge, McGill, and Oxford Universities, and he has been featured on ABC News, Dateline, The Colbert Report, and Fresh Air. Wright is the award-winning author of After You Believe, Surprised by Hope, Simply Christian, The Challenge of Jesus, and The Meaning of Jesus (coauthored with Marcus Borg), as well as the much-heralded series Christian Origins and the Question of God.
“Wright has never been more eloquent and persuasive than in this book that… caps a long, productive theological career.”
-Booklist (starred review)
“Scholarly, accessible, insightful and challenging . . . an excellent and provocative book.”
“The prolific Christian apologist N.T. Wright… now devotes an entire volume, ‘How God Became King’ to this trendy subject. Wright’s insistence that Christianity has got it all wrong seems to mark a turning point for the serious rethinking of heaven.”
-The Washington Post
“We often read the beginning and the end of the Gospels without the large middle where the message of the kingdom rings loud and clear. I recommend to everyone who wants to understand the Gospels’ message in a way that will not only inform the intellect but also transform life.”
-Tremper Longman III, Robert H. Gundry Professor of Biblical Studies, Westmont College
“Tom Wright continues to urge and prod and propose how the church can regain a kingdom footing and end its empire heritage. And, he shows us how we can reshape both what we think about Jesus and how we follow him in our world.”
-Scot McKnight, Karl A. Olsson Professor in Religious Studies, North Park University
“Wright is a scholar who writes as if the material he engages actually matters for the church and the world it lives in… and has again done the church a great favor in presenting the gospel story as the story of God and his kingdom on earth.”
-Englewood Review of Books
How God Became King
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