The Astonished Heart: Reclaiming the Good News from the Lost-and-Found of Church History

Overview

Where has the church been, and what has it become? According to Robert Farrar Capon, the answers to these questions are in many ways dispiriting. Although the church has done much good, it has also made numerous blunders in its checkered history. Chief among them is that it has lost its astonishment over the Good News of the gospel - the gift of salvation we receive from Christ. By taking readers on an illuminating ramble through the history of the church, Capon shows how we have lost this sense of astonishment ...
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Overview

Where has the church been, and what has it become? According to Robert Farrar Capon, the answers to these questions are in many ways dispiriting. Although the church has done much good, it has also made numerous blunders in its checkered history. Chief among them is that it has lost its astonishment over the Good News of the gospel - the gift of salvation we receive from Christ. By taking readers on an illuminating ramble through the history of the church, Capon shows how we have lost this sense of astonishment by making Christianity into a religion that focuses on requirements and restrictions rather than on the Good News, and by turning the church, which should be a body of believers, into an institution that emphasizes its corporate functions to the detriment of its gospel message. After exploring all the ways in which the church has mis-embodied itself over the centuries, Capon explains how the church today might re-create itself. The key, according to Capon, is recovering the gift of astonishment with which it began. Capon is fully alert to both the tragedy and the comedy of church history, and he covers this uneven ground with great heart and great humor - and genuine hope for the future of the church.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802807915
  • Publisher: Eerdmans, William B. Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 3/1/1996
  • Pages: 136
  • Product dimensions: 0.32 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 9.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
1 An Overview of Church History 1
2 A Look at Where We Are Now 10
3 The Church before the Church 17
4 The Church from Peter through Paul 29
5 The Church in the Greco-Roman World 45
6 The Christendom Model of the Church 59
7 From Christendom to the Corporate Model 73
8 The Church in the Marketplace of New Models 88
9 The Brighter Future 104
Epilogue: The Astonished Heart 118
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