Moltmann on Breaking the Spell of Hopelessness

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The folks at Fortress Press were kind enough to hook me up with a digital review copy of Moltmann’s newest book in English, Jürgen Moltmann: Collected Readings. It includes key selections from some of Moltmann’s most important works from Theology of Hope to Ethics of Hope (though I was slightly disappointed to see that The Church In The Power of the Spirit and Experiences in Theology don’t make appearances!).

The Introduction by Richard Bauckham is an excellent short overview of Moltmann’s overall project, and you can read it in full as part of the free preview over on Fortress Press’ website. I plan to post a review of this collection once I get to the end of it, but may share a quote or two here along the way. Here is one that really hit home with me from Theology of Hope:

The spell of the dogma of hopelessness—ex nihilo nihil fit—is broken where he who raises the dead is recognized to be God. Where in faith and hope we begin to live in the light of the possibilities and promises of this God, the whole fullness of life discloses itself as a life of history and therefore a life to be loved. Only in the perspective of this God can there possibly be a love that is more than philia, love to the existent and the like—namely, agape, love to the non-existent, love to the unlike, the unworthy, the worthless, to the lost, the transient, and the dead; a love that can take upon it the annihilating effects of pain and renunciation because it receives its power from hope of a creatio ex nihilo. Love does not shut its eyes to the non-existent and say it is nothing, but becomes itself the magic power that brings it into being. In its hope, love surveys the open possibilities of history. In love, hope brings all things into the light of the promises of God.
(Jürgen Moltmann: Collected Readings, Kindle Location 441)

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