Wednesday 15 November 2006

Critiquing O'Donovan

The new issue of the International Journal of Systematic Theology contains some excellent work on Luther, John Zizioulas, Eberhard Jüngel, christology, hermeneutics, and more.

In view of all the recent discussion here of pacifism, some of you might especially be interested in Justin Neufeld’s article, “Just War Theory, the Authorization of the State, and the Hermeneutics of Peoplehood: How John Howard Yoder Can Save Oliver O’Donovan from Himself,” IJST 8:4 (2006), 411-32.

In this searching critique, Neufeld argues that “O’Donovan’s authorization of secular authority to mediate God’s judgements is the product of an ontology that rules out beforehand both the possibility that Jesus’ death is decisive for understanding his mediatorial representation and, as a result, the possibility that the task set before the church is to model alternatives to the state based on its acquaintance with its own practices of reconciliation and discernment.”


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the reference Ben. I'll be sure to have a look. I have been challenged by views expressed on this blog, and I think that quote is right on the money. If O'Donovan is wrong on this issue, then we should all be pacifists.

michael jensen said...

He's not. So we needn't.

But then, I would say that!

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