Encountering the Living God in Scripture

Theological and Philosophical Principles for Interpretation

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This work gives a philosophical and theological account of the belief that Scripture enables people to encounter the life-giving reality of God. The authors examine the biblical foundations for this belief as given in a variety of witnesses from both Testaments and explain the philosophical and theological underpinnings of Christian exegesis. What results is a contemporary statement of the traditional belief that Scripture can put its readers in transforming contact with the living God.

Encountering the Living God in Scripture sums up and makes accessible the teaching of revered senior scholar and teacher Francis Martin. Aimed squarely at students, the book assumes no advanced training in philosophy or theology and will work well in Bible, interpretation, and doctrine of Scripture courses.

Contents

Foreword by Robert Sokolowski
Introduction
Part 1: Fides
1. The Word of God: Power and Presence
2. The Word of God in the Inspired Speech of the Prophets
3. The Word of God in the Inspired Speech of the Apostles
4. The Word of God in Inspired Written Discourse
Conclusion to Part 1
Part 2: Quaerens Intellectum
5. God and the World: The Distinction
6. The Metaphysics of the Created World
7. Creation, the Bible, and the Question of Transcendence
8. Creation and the Communion of Mind, Words, and World
9. The Mediation of Divine Reality through the Biblical Text
10. Encountering the Living God in Scripture: The Holy Spirit and Spirituality
Conclusion to Part 2
Index


Endorsements

"William Wright's book--inspired by the work of Fr. Francis Martin and a fitting tribute to his memory--is a welcome and needed contribution. It fills a gaping lacuna in biblical scholarship, providing a solid theological and philosophical underpinning to what Scripture itself claims to do: namely, mediate an encounter with the living Word of God. This book delivers on its promise to explain clearly 'how the Bible works.' I highly recommend this volume to anyone who reads and studies the Bible in order to grow in faith and be transformed."

Thomas D. Stegman, SJ, dean and professor of New Testament, Boston College School of Theology and Ministry

"Such a work has been needed for a long time. The fact that Scripture puts us into contact with the living mysteries of Christ was the basis of all of Fr. Martin's scholarship and preaching. Here, relying on his years of collaboration with Martin, Wright presents us with the biblical, philosophical, and theological foundations of this crucial hermeneutical key. An invaluable study that will serve theologians, exegetes, and every serious student of biblical interpretation."

Mary Healy, professor of Sacred Scripture, Sacred Heart Major Seminary

"If only every Catholic biblical scholar and theologian--as well as every bishop, priest, and seminarian--would read this book. The message of the book is simple: read Scripture in faith, and experience the transformative, divine power and presence of the living, incarnate Word, as communicated by the scriptural Word. With exegetical, philosophical, theological, and spiritual profundity, this book solves a lot of problems. A new day has dawned in Catholic biblical scholarship!"

Matthew Levering, James N. and Mary D. Perry Jr. Chair of Theology, Mundelein Seminary

"Wright and Martin make a profoundly compelling contribution to theological interpretation. This book proffers a taste of the sweetness of the power and presence of Jesus in the Scriptures. It explains how mind, word, and world harmonize to ground the self-revelation of God. And it uncovers the mystery of Christ that inheres in the realities that the Bible presents. Eminently readable yet deeply informed, Encountering the Living God in Scripture goes to the very heart of the link between sacramental reading and participatory ontology."

Hans Boersma, J. I. Packer Professor of Theology, Regent College


The Authors

  1. William M. Wright IV

    William M. Wright IV

    William M. Wright IV (PhD, Emory University) is professor of theology at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is the author of Rhetoric and Theology: Figural Reading of John 9.

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  2. Francis Martin

    Francis Martin

    Francis Martin (1930-2017; SSD, Pontifical Biblical Institute) was a beloved priest and scholar who served in many academic and pastoral settings. He founded Father Francis Martin Ministries and taught at the Dominican House of Studies. He was also a priest of...

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