The theology of salvation stands at the heart of the Christian faith. Very often the structure of Christian salvation is seen in terms of a single theme, such as atonement for sins, forgiveness, liberation or friendship with God. It is easy to reduce soteriology to a matter of merely personal experience, or to see salvation as just a solution to a human problem. This book explores a vital yet often neglected aspect of Christian confession - the essential relationship between the nature of salvation and the character of the God who saves. In what ways does God's saving outreach reflect God's character? How might a Christian depiction of salvation best bear witness to these features? What difference might it make to start with the identity of God as encountered in the gospel, then view everything else in the light of that? In addressing these questions, this book offers fresh appraisals of a range of major themes in theology: the nature of creaturely existence; the relationship between divine purposes and material history; the holiness, love and judgement of God; the atoning work of Jesus Christ; election, justification and the nature of faith; salvation outside the church; human and non-human ends; the nature of eschatological fellowship with God. In looking at these issues in the light of God's identity, the authors offer a stimulating and tightly-argued reassessment of what a Christian theology of salvation ought to resemble, and ask what the implications might be for Christian life and witness in the world today.
Ivor J. Davidson is Professor of Systematic Theology, University of St Andrews, Scotland and Murray A. Rae is Associate Professor of Theology and Ethics at the University of Otago, New Zealand
'This important, exciting and informative work will be immensely useful to all who would think seriously about the origin, meaning and goal of salvation today. Anyone looking for a portrayal of soteriology firmly anchored in the doctrines of the Trinity and the incarnation, with a view toward eschatology that takes into account the whole of creation, will want to read this book.' Paul D. Molnar, St. John's University, New York, USA 'This skillfully edited collection of essays by leading theologians constitutes an invaluable contribution to the contemporary debate on the nature of salvation. It will prove an invaluable resource for academics, students and lay theologians alike. This is both a timely and immensely impressive volume.' Alan J. Torrance, University of St Andrews, UK '... what unites the ten essays in the volume is the focus on soteriology, as the title suggests, but more than this, there is a focus throughout most of the essays upon the triune God, centred in Jesus Christ, and with an eye on the cosmic scope of God's redemptive purposes... [Davidson] opens up something of the expansiveness a genuinely Christian soteriology presents and then offers suggestions, prompts, and indications of where such a soteriology may go. This alone would provide a useful introductory reading for any class on the topic... this volume is sure to thrill...' Colloquium ’... the text would be especially useful to graduate students, especially in the Reformed and Roman Catholic traditions, as its ultimate value is in placing soteriology within a systematic theological framework, a perspective that it does well.’ Religious Studies Review '... an excellent volume, full of thoughtful arguments, and any systematic theologian will benefit from working through it.' Theological Book Review '... one can only applaud the Reformed theologians of God of Salvation for a collection of essays that finds the transcendence of God non-negotiable, even while opening themselves to the