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A Theology of the Presence and Absence of God

A Theology of the Presence and Absence of God

by Anthony J. Godzieba


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In a consumer-driven and technologized world, can we still experience the mystery of God? This book answers yes by exploring the rich resources of the Christian tradition of thinking and speaking about God. Focusing on God’s dialectical character—divine availability (“presence”) and divine excess (“absence”)—and the belief that “God is love” (1 John 4:16), professor Anthony J. Godzieba tracks how God became a problem in Western culture, then responds by showing how human experience is open to divine transcendence and how that openness encounters the revelation of God as Trinity. The book’s contemporary edge comes from its insistence that belief as embodied performance is the most authentic way to participate in the mystery of God’s love, which is “the answer to the mystery of the world and human beings” (Walter Kasper).

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780814663585
Publisher: Liturgical Press
Publication date: 05/24/2018
Pages: 340
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)

About the Author

Anthony J. Godzieba is professor of theology and religious studies at Villanova University and former editor of Horizons: The Journal of the College Theology Society. His work in systematic, foundational, and philosophical theologies is published widely in various collections and in journals such as Theological Studies, Louvain Studies, and The Heythrop Journal.  Most recently he has co-edited (with Bradford Hinze) Beyond Dogmatism and Innocence: Hermeneutics, Critique, and Catholic Theology (Liturgical Press, 2017).

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 God—Believers—Questions
1. Questions and Their Discontents
2. Asking Carefully
3. A More Humble Questioning
4. The Context of Our Questioning
Chapter 2 How God Became a Problem in Western Culture
1. The Dialectical View
2. The Rise of the Extrinsic View
3. The Nineteenth-Century Critique of Religion
Chapter 3 The Christian Response, I: Natural Theology
1. The Meaning and Necessity of Natural Theology
2. Some Classical and Contemporary God-Arguments
3. The Consistency and Cogency of Natural Theology
Chapter 4 The Christian Response, II: Theological Theology
1. The Link between Natural and Theological Theology
2. The Revelation of the Triune God
3. The Trinitarian Rule of Faith and its Interpretation
4. The Doctrine of the Trinity in a Contemporary Context
5. Ongoing Points of Discussion
Chapter 5 The Presence and Absence of God
1. Paradox
2. Phenomenality
3. Performance
4. The Presence and Absence of God
Selected Bibliography

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