Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Moltmann: Questions for the Crucified God

This afternoon, The Emergent Convention's Moltmann Conversation began at First Pres in Libertyville, Illinois. It's interesting that I should attend this after I wrote yesterday's blog about not being able to know anything about the end times. Moltmann's initial book of theology which gained him international fame and put him at the forefront of innovative theology is all about eschatology or, the study of the end times or final things. Moltmann is famous for his Eschatology of Hope at a time when theologians were putting eschatology on the back burner.

So I've been asked to be an interlocatur for the first session based on Moltmann's text, The Crucified God. I'm supposed to be available to people to give me questions to pose to Moltmann tomorrow. Here's some of my musings and the musings of my friends here with me...

Questions for Moltmann:

1. I fell in love with you in seminary and when I was explaining to my friends and family what I would be doing in Chicago and to whom I would be listening, I answered "Jurgen Moltmann, a German Theologian and a Christian Universalist. He wrote The Crucified God." I explained that you believed that because of Jesus' redemptive work on the cross all have access to God. But as I re-read Crucified God this weekend, I didn't find what I remember so explicitely laid out in your text. So I guess my question for you is, "Is it okay for me to explain your theolgoy as a Christian Universalism or would you describe it as something else?

2. The Crucified God allows for pastors and others to care for people who are hurting by encouraging them that God is here with them in their suffering. But is that it, or is there something stronger; do we have anything else to say to suffering?

3. Your book was born from the question, where was God in WWII? Do you see any human situations now as pressing to theology as the atrocity this book was born out of?

4. You say that an eschatological community must be critical of society, so how can the church critique a society that turns critique into commodity. How can we creatively engage politics? Ex: the protestors of the war in Iraq. They came, protested, had a clean conscious, but Bush started the war anyway. So how do we actually and effectually engage the public sphere as a church?

5. Is your primary question at this point in your life still "Where is God?"

6. What's your favorite Bible Story? (and you can't say Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection)

What are your questions? Get them in by 9am!!


jbonewald said...

how do we help folks, who are not used to it, to think about God as vulnerable in the cross?

Unknown said...

In a conversation with parishioners I remember asking the question "When was God most vulnerable?" I thought it was a fairly easy question, but all I got were pretty much blank stares. When I went on to explain that God was most vulnerable "on the cross" I had at least one person object that God could not be vulnerable at all. How do we help people, who are not used to it, to think about God's vulnerability on the cross? Why would we want to help people think about God has being vulnerable?

Joe Bumbulis said...

Man these questions are really good!

Who would you read or build your theology off of today? (i.e. Bloch for hope).

Do you think God is "weak"? Is the crucified God an "open" God?

Is this Christus Victor atonement theory?

Is the penal substitionary theory of atonement arcane, wrong, necessary?

Joe Bumbulis said...

If God forsakes his Son to suffer, then does he forsake me? my church? the world to suffer?

Is suffering pointless? Is there meaning in suffering?

Do you believe in revolution, like liberation theologians of certain types? If not how does change occur?

Should Christians run for presidency? soldier? police officer?

Laurie said...

Moltmann says that as hope increases so does suffering increase. How do we as Christians live in the tension of the two?