The Death of the Messiah and the Birth of the New Covenant

The Death of the Messiah and the Birth of the New Covenant : A (Not-So) New Model of the Atonement

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In this groundbreaking book, Michael Gorman asks why there is no theory or model of the atonement called the "new-covenant" model, since this understanding of the atonement is likely the earliest in the Christian tradition, going back to Jesus himself. Gorman argues that most models of the atonement over-emphasize the penultimate purposes of Jesus' death and the "mechanics" of the atonement, rather than its ultimate purpose: to create a transformed, Spirit-filled people of God. The New Testament's various atonement metaphors are part of a remarkably coherent picture of Jesus' death as that which brings about the new covenant (and thus the new community) promised by the prophets, which is also the covenant of peace. Gorman therefore proposes a new model of the atonement that is really not new at all-the new-covenant model. He argues that this is not merely an ancient model in need of rediscovery, but also a more comprehensive, integrated, participatory, communal, and missional model than any of the major models in the tradition. Life in this new covenant, Gorman argues, is a life of communal and individual participation in Jesus' faithful, loving, peacemaking death.
Written for both academics and church leaders, this book will challenge all who read it to re-think and re-articulate the meaning of Christ's death for us.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 290 pages
  • 153 x 229 x 18mm | 430g
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0227174917
  • 9780227174913
  • 2,279,844

Table of contents

since this understanding of the atonement is likely the earliest in the Christian tradition
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Review quote

'This is an interesting book with quite a positive vision for churches. It offers a wide view of salvation and the part Christians play in it, and is well-aimed at the interested, intelligent reader who is not part of the theological academy.'
- Andrew Angel, Journal for the Study of the New Testament, 37.5, August 2015

'This is a highly readable and hugely significant book...that should stimulate conversation in classrooms and, hopefully in churches.'
- Stephen Finland, Modern Believing, Vol. 57:1, January 2016

'The volume is well recommended and should provide a very helpful starter for many fruitful debates.'
- James D. G. Dunn, Theology 119.1 2016

'[T]he book is readable and accesible while still managing a substantial contribution to atonement theology.'
- Blake Wassell, Theological Book Review, Vol. 27 No.1, 2016

'[T]his book is an excellent resource for those who are interested in the new covenant, the atonement, and the outflow of new-covenant living (peace, faithfulness, love).. This would be beneficial required reading in seminary classrooms, for students, for pastors, and for teachers.'
- Spencer Robinson,, September 2017
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About Michael J. Gorman

Michael J Gorman holds the Raymond E. Brown Chair in Biblical Studies and Theology at St. Mary's Seminary & University in Baltimore. He is the author of 10 books, including the best-selling 'Reading Paul and Reading Revelation Responsibly', as well as 'Cruciformity: Paul's Narrative Spirituality of the Cross and Elements of Biblical Exegesis'.
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Rating details

39 ratings
4.17 out of 5 stars
5 41% (16)
4 38% (15)
3 18% (7)
2 3% (1)
1 0% (0)
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