Friday, December 26, 2008

Surprised by Genre

A review of sorts of N.T. Wright's Surprised by Hope-- from Marvin Olasky in World.

Wright's title invokes Lewis' testimony in Surprised by Joy. And in Olasky's view, Wright builds on Lewis' work.

Lewis is famous...for one apologetic in particular: Jesus was liar, lunatic, or Lord; that it made no sense, based on the Gospel accounts, to consider Him liar or lunatic; ergo, Jesus must be Lord.

The skeptical response, of course, is that Lewis is assuming the Gospel accounts are honest reporting—but couldn't they have been written decades later by distorting propagandists who churned out fiction and called it fact?

Responses to that include...

Wright's new book adds another dimension. He lucidly explains how the Gospel writers, if they were holy fakers, would have had to invent not only a new genre but also a theology completely removed from any Jewish or pagan understandings of their time. First-century believers in various Jewish and pagan doctrines may have expected to see shining or ghostly figures, but no one anticipated meeting someone who would eat a piece of fish....


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