Sunday, 11 December 2011

Karl Barth for beginners

No doubt about it, when it comes to theology Charlie Barth was a bit of a genius. Trying to get your head around even a few of his ideas is no mean feat: if you're not careful it has been known to induce migraine, vertigo, religious conversion, or even doctoral studies.

So to help you out, here's a quick colloquial abridgement of Barth's whole theological career:
  • Romans commentary (early 1920s): God judges
  • Göttingen dogmatics (mid 1920s): God speaks
  • Anselm book (1930): God knows
  • Church Dogmatics I (1930s): God gives
  • Church Dogmatics II (1940s): God loves
  • Church Dogmatics III (1940s-50s): God blesses
  • Church Dogmatics IV (1950s-60s): God befriends
  • Church Dogmatics V (never written): God heals 
As you can tell, old Charlie Barth wasn't a fox, he was a hedgehog. He knew only one big thing – that God is God, and that the word "God" is a good word.


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