Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Top books on the resurrection

Here are my top eight books on the resurrection (limited to books written within the past century, and to one book per author):

1. Karl Barth, The Epistle to the Romans
2. Wolfhart Pannenberg, Jesus – God and Man
3. Rudolf Bultmann, various essays
4. J. Louis Martyn, Galatians
5. Robert W. Jenson, God after God: The God of the Past and the God of the Future, Seen in the Work of Karl Barth
6. Jürgen Moltmann, Theology of Hope
7. Alain Badiou: Saint Paul: The Foundation of Universalism
8. Edward Schillebeeckx, Jesus: An Experiment in Christology

Update: See also Halden’s alternative list – he also includes a book by Alan Lewis which I haven’t read yet; looks like I’ll have to get a copy.

20 Comments:

Alex said...

Wow, N.T. Wright gets all the hype and he didn't even make the list. Would you say it was more that Wright's book wasn't high enough quality to make the list or was it more that the others were of such good quality that they pushed him off? The only one I've read is Moltmann's and I didn't really get much out of it. Maybe I read it too fast or needed to read someone else first to get some background. Some of the others are on my list to read.

michael jensen said...

Bultmann!!! I thought you said the resurrection... ;-)

Anonymous said...

Wow, Tom wright didn't even make the cut. Ouch! Well, at least J.L. Martyn did.

FYI - Bultmann's work just put me to sleep.

BP

R.O. Flyer said...

I, for one, am really glad Wright's book didn't make the list. It was terrible!

Alex said...

R.O.,

Curious what you thought was terrible about Wright's work? I can understand Ben not putting it on his list, but terrible? I don't imagine that even Ben would say that.

Thanks!

michael jensen said...

Peter Carnley's The Structure of Resurrection Belief didn't make the list either - one of the few works of systematic theology by an Australian.

Graham Hunter said...

I would have Rowan Williams' 'Resurrection: Interpreting the Easter Gospel' on there as well...

Anonymous said...

Great list. Couldn't have made better choices. beauty

Geoff Smith said...

I thought I read a comment by Ben indicating that he hadn't read N.T. Wright's series. I'm probably wrong.

Anyhow, I've only read two of these books and therefor cannot rightly disagree or make additions. I won't even obtain a BA until december. But I will make some time to read the rest of this stuff. Nice list, thanks.

Ben Myers said...

Geoff: yes, I've learned a lot from Wright's series (and I think JVG is excellent). But although his massive book on the resurrection includes lots of interesting historical insights, I don't think it really goes very far towards answering the fundamental question: "What is resurrection?" If we want to answer that question, then Bultmann and Pannenberg and Martyn (and even Badiou!) are much better guides.

Halden said...

Ben, yes you MUST read Alan Lewis' book. It is absolutely incredible.

Geoff Smith said...

Ben,

I get your drift. So we're talking about the nature of resurrection here, not the expectation, the occurrance, or the implications. I'm planning on getting some Badiou, but it will have to wait a while. Probably until the summer. I may have three weeks off of everything but dumpster diving, reading, and writing.

a. steward said...

Alan Lewis' book is an absolutely fantastic piece of theology. It is beautifully written, too - something that certainly can't be said for Moltmann or Pannenberg!

Alex said...

Theologically, I think Wright's answer to the "What is the resurrection?" question is that it was God's vindication of Jesus person/message. Physically, I think he actually created a word for his answer: transphysical. He very much affirmed the physical nature of the resurrection but without the corruptibility. But I guess perhaps you are saying that he didn't advance the theological conversation any further than where it had alread been. That makes sense. I haven't read enough earlier theology to know.

Exiled Preacher said...

I'm a bit surprised that Wright didn't make your list too. In a sense, the whole of his The Resurrection of the Son of God is devoted to the question, "What is resurrection?". For a good exegetical-theological study, I'd also recommend Resurrection and Redemption by Richard Gaffin.

Dave Belcher said...

Graham, good call on Williams...I would not only put it on the list, but put it at the top of the list...it should at least supplant Badiou's position on the list. I am finding lately that Badiou's book on St. Paul is perhaps one of the most overestimated books of the past decade--outmatched only by the highly praised and dogmatically confused book of David Bentley Hart, The Beauty of the Infinite.

Geoff Smith said...

I thought I read a comment by Ben indicating that he hadn't read N.T. Wright's series. I'm probably wrong.

Anyhow, I've only read two of these books and therefor cannot rightly disagree or make additions. I won't even obtain a BA until december. But I will make some time to read the rest of this stuff. Nice list, thanks.

Halden said...

Ben, yes you MUST read Alan Lewis' book. It is absolutely incredible.

Graham Hunter said...

I would have Rowan Williams' 'Resurrection: Interpreting the Easter Gospel' on there as well...

Geoff Smith said...

Ben,

I get your drift. So we're talking about the nature of resurrection here, not the expectation, the occurrance, or the implications. I'm planning on getting some Badiou, but it will have to wait a while. Probably until the summer. I may have three weeks off of everything but dumpster diving, reading, and writing.

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