Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Questions about Jüngel

If you have a question concerning Jüngel's theology, whether a general question or some particular problem, please post it here. I will do my best to address them, though I hope others more knowledgeable than I will offer their input.


chris king said...

I'm sure I have a lot of questions, but my first is this: Is Jungel's theology so radically christocentric that God is really only truly revealed through Jesus Christ? Meaning, what room does Jungel give to revelation of God given in the Old Testament, et al? Is there room for other God-acts to affect the reading of the revelation of the Crucified One?

Clint said...

At some point, consider doing a comparison of Oswald Bayer and Jüngel.

Also, if you are serious about doing a group blog on Jungel, I'd be game.

Ben Myers said...

Great blog, David!

One question that I've often struggled with is whether Jüngel is right to take over Bultmann's view that the resurrection is not a "second" event that chronologically follows Jesus' death. For Jüngel, "resurrection" describes God's relationship to (i.e. "identification with") the dead Jesus, but it is not a separate event in distinction from Jesus' death.

I agree entirely with Jüngel's (and Bultmann's) reasons for presenting the resurrection like this; but at times I can't help feeling uneasy about the historical implications of an absolute identification between "death" and "resurrection".

Ed Brenegar said...

Two questions:
1. How does Jungel treat common grace, and by extension what is termed "natural theology?"

2. How does Jungel treat the human social dimension? For example, what it means for human relationships to be "in Christ" or for that matter, the nature and purpose of the church.

D.W. Congdon said...


1. Jüngel, like Barth, rejects natural theology, in its traditional form. What he wishes to advocate instead is what he calls a "more natural theology," which places Jesus Christ at the center and orients a theology of the natural around this christological focal point. If you wish to read about this, see Jüngel's book, Christ, Justice and Peace, or read the last chapter of Webster's introduction to the theology of Eberhard Jüngel.

2. Your second question requires a more extended response than I can give now. I promise to try to address the subject in a future post.

Jordan said...

Does anyone have (or has anyone read) Jüngel's 1st "Theological Essays"? What do they tend to focus on, and besides Webster's book, is this a good place to start with Jüngel?

Jordan said...

Does anyone check this anymore? Or is it just that no one has an answer to my question?

D.W. Congdon said...

Sorry, Jordan. Yes, I own and have read Theological Essays I. This book of essays show Jüngel at his most brilliant. The highlights include a very long essay on the nature of metaphorical truth, which brings together his best thoughts on language and theology. His essay on theological anthropology, "Humanity in Correspondence to God," is one of my top favorite essays. There is an excellent essay on Barth's ethics in the CD IV.4 fragment, called "Invocation of God." And there is an essay on the church and the sacraments which does a very nice job of showing what the relation between Jesus Christ and the sacrament(s) should be. One other favorite of mine is another philosophical essay on possibility vs. actuality, arguing for the priority of the former.

I hope this helps. This first collection is more in line with the thought-patterns evident in God as the Mystery of the World--more philosophical in nature. His second collection is more closely related to his later writings on justification and not as focused on the issues of language.

Jordan said...

No reason to be sorry. I just wasn't sure if I missed an update to a new place to ask questions.

Your blog has been very helpful to my understanding, and I definitely appreciate your reply.

Anonymous said...

Can you please elaborate on Barth's concept of "primal decision" (CD IV/2)? As I understand the term, God in his grace elects to be a God pro nobis, a God self-revealed in three persona. God as concrete unity in 3 differentiations. A primal decision would then indicate a God who, prior to being a God in 3 persons, would have been a God without us, without hypostatic unity (ie. no unity). This God would be God within himself and with no differentiation. If so, does God then undergo change? Is God's election reflective of a change in the being of God? How am I to properly understand what Barth and Jungel's monograph on his Trinity means to say?

Anonymous said...

Can anyone take up the question on Barth's concept of "primal decision" to be a triune God?

Todd said...


Thanks for running this site. You've got a great niche in covering Eberhard Jungel.

Do you have any idea when we might see Theological Essays III et al. in English?

Also, is there such a thing as a seminary book sale? Buying some of Jungel's books online like "Justification" is ludicrously expensive, if available. Theology students must be "in the know" about non-advertised book sales. Any vendor recommendations for finding hard to find theology books?