- Copyright page
- List of Abbreviations
- List of Contributors
- The Tasks of Theology
- Revelation and Scripture
- Jesus Christ
- The Spirit
- Sin and Evil
- Human Being
- Christian Life
- Justification, Sanctification, Vocation
- Barth and the Racial Imaginary
- Barth and Modern Moral Philosophy
- Barth and Gender
- Barth and Public Life
- Barth and Hermeneutics
- Barth and Preaching
- Barth and Environmental Theology
- Barth and Culture
- Barth and Judaism
- Barth, Religion, and the Religions
- Barth and Contemporary Protestant Theology
- Barth and Roman Catholic Theology
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter exposits and analyses the central contours of Barth’s mature doctrine of the church, in which the church is innovatively characterized by a twofold ec-centricity—a double decentring of its life and work. In a first section, it considers Barth’s radical understanding of the being of the church in relation to Jesus Christ and the Spirit, and the way in which the church has its originating centre outwith itself, in its being from God. In a second section, it attends to the creative way in which Barth conceives of the church as a divine event, and thereby relativizes the church as human institution. In a third section, it focuses on the significance and content of the human activity of the church, and the provocative way in which Barth locates the ultimate purpose of the church outwith itself, in its being for the world. In a fourth section, the chapter explores in outline some of the critical responses to Barth’s groundbreaking doctrine of the church. Finally, by way of conclusion, the chapter considers the relationship of Barth’s ecclesiology to ecumenical conversation.
Paul T. Nimmo is the King’s Chair of Systematic Theology at the University of Aberdeen. His first monograph, Being in Action: The Theological Shape of Barth’s Ethical Vision (2007), was awarded a John Templeton Award for Theological Promise in 2009. He has since authored Barth: A Guide for the Perplexed (2017), co-edited with David Fergusson The Cambridge Companion to Reformed Theology (2016), and edited the church resource Learn: Understanding Our Faith (2017). He is Senior Editor of International Journal of Systematic Theology, co-editor, with Paul Dafydd Jones, of the monograph series Explorations in Reformed Theology, and co-Chair of the AAR Reformed Theology and History Unit.
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