Title: Surprised by Hope
Author: N.T. Wright
Synopsis: The “Anglican bishop tackles the biblical question of what happens after we die and shows how most Christians get it wrong. We do not “go to” heaven; we are resurrected and heaven comes down to earth–a difference that makes all of the difference to how we live on earth. The scholar takes on one of life’s most controversial topics, a matter of life, death, spirituality, and survival for everyone living in the world today.”
Why I can’t live without this book: You’d think I’d have more theology books on this past month’s list, given that I hold a Masters of Theology – but really, just because I’ve read them doesn’t mean they’re my favorite. (Theology professors everywhere shutter in disbelief, I know). But this one, which isn’t technically one of his theological treatises but is actually written for the lay reader, is a winner. Wright changed the way I think about heaven and “life after life after death” (as he puts it), in general. And besides, we named our oldest child after being introduced to the biblical “canon” by Wright himself. So, give him a try, will you?
(One of my) favorite quotes: “Salvation, then, is not “going to heaven” but “being raised to life in God’s new heaven and new earth.” But as soon as we put it like this we realize that the New Testament is full of hints, indications, and downright assertions that this salvation isn’t just something we have to wait for in the long-distance future. We can enjoy it here and now (always partially, of course, since we all still have to die), genuinely anticipating in the present what is to come in the future.” See? Total game-changer.
So, Surprised by Hope: are you a fan? I suppose you need to be interested in theology in general in order to have an appreciate for N.T. Wright, but I sure like what he has to say. Agree? Disagree?
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