Early Church Understandings of Jesus as the Female Divine

Early Church Understandings of Jesus as the Female Divine : The Scandal of the Scandal of Particularity

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Central to debates about Jesus is the issue of whether he uniquely embodies the divine. While this discussion continues unabated, both those who affirm and those who dismiss, Jesus' divinity regularly eclipse the reality that in many of the earliest strands of the Christian tradition when Jesus' divinity is proclaimed, Jesus is imaged as the female divine.

Sally Douglas investigates these early texts, excavates the motivations for imaging Jesus as Woman Wisdom and the complex reasons that this began to be suppressed in the 2nd and 3rd centuries. The work concludes with an exploration of the powerful implications of engaging with the ancient proclamation of Jesus-Woman Wisdom in contemporary context.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 240 pages
  • 156 x 234 x 14.22mm | 513g
  • T.& T.Clark Ltd
  • Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 3 bw illus
  • 0567667146
  • 9780567667144
  • 1,233,759

Table of contents

List of Acknowledgements
List of Abbreviations
1.The Scandal of the Scandal of Particularity
2. Is He She?
3. Why is it So?
4. Where Shall Wisdom be Found?
5. Re-Recognising Jesus-Woman Wisdom
6. Scandalous Invitations
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Review quote

A detailed yet accessible treatment of a complex issue in the history of Christian theology. Douglas has made a valuable contribution to continued discussions about use of language associated with the female divine in relationship to Jesus, demonstrating that such terminology and concepts are a valuable, early, and even essential part of the Christian tradition. Those wishing to explore the concepts of the female divine, Woman Wisdom, and the development of Christology in the first three centuries CE will find an excellent resource that presents and interprets the textual evidence with scholarly acumen and clarity of thought. * Reading Religion * A thought-provoking book, opening up almost as many questions as it seeks to answer. * Regent's Reviews * Douglas provides a compelling thesis that is at once engaged in key modern debates and creatively `orthodox' in its approach and implications. * Theology * The discussions relating to language, visual imagery, Christology, the re-imagining of dualism customs, soteriology, ecclesiology and gender, to name but a few, prove helpful when trying to re-recognize Jesus-Woman Wisdom. I would highly recommend this book for students/scholars who are interested in pursuing new avenues of the debate. * Journal for the Study of the New Testament * Douglas responsively pays attention to the First and Second Testaments and other early church texts under consideration, and steps back from these sources in order to attend to the broader questions of gender equality in the church. * Journal of Early Christian History * Sally Douglas' work stands out as an exemplar of good practice. Drawing on biblical and theological studies, Douglas has presented a masterly study of the use of Wisdom in the Second Testament (New Testament) for the theological martrix of christology and soteriology * Mary L. Coloe, University of Divinity, Australia *
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About Sally Douglas

Sally Douglas is an Honorary Postdoctoral Associate in the University of Divinity in Melbourne, Australia. She is a Uniting Church minister with an inner city congregation and is an adjunct teacher within the University of Divinity at Pilgrim Theological College, Australia.
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