Lexington Books / Fortress Academic
Trim: 6 x 9
978-1-9787-0639-2 • Hardback • August 2019 • $105.00 • (£81.00)
978-1-9787-0640-8 • eBook • August 2019 • $45.00 • (£35.00)
Michael P. Jensen is rector of St. Mark’s Anglican Church, Darling Point in Sydney, Australia, and teaches theology at Sydney College of Divinity and Australian College of Theology.
Chapter 1 Senses of Ending
Chapter 2 Genre as Theology
Chapter 3 Narrative Ontology
Chapter 4 Epic
Chapter 5 Comedy
Chapter 6 Tragedy
Chapter 7 Gospel as Story
Stories belong to various genres, and human identity is story-shaped. Literary theorists and theologians of the late twentieth century got that far. Michael P. Jensen’s important book goes further, however, suggesting that literary forms are themselves formative of human being. If genres are sources of the self, it is important to know in what story — and in what kind of story — one is caught up: comedy or tragedy, to name but two. Christian theology maintains that we are caught up in gospel: the story of God’s self-communication to a lost world. In a secular age filled with dystopian fiction and drained of transcendent meaning, the Bible tells a story with ontological import that inscribes humanity into the narrative of the divine, namely, the Father’s self-giving love poured out in Jesus Christ. Jensen here presents the gospel not only as a great, indeed unique, literary genre but as an existential game-changer for the ages.
— Kevin J. Vanhoozer, research professor of Systematic Theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School