For over thirty years Schubert Ogden has championed and exemplified a particular understanding of the task and content of Christian theology. The task of theology is to examine the meaning and truth of Christian faith in terms of human experience. All theological claims, therefore, are assessable by two criteria: their appropriateness to the normative Christian witness and their credibility in terms of human existence. The content of Christian theology may be accurately and succinctly stated in two words: radical monotheism. The point of all theological doctrines, from christology to ethics, is to reflect on the gift and demand of God's love. It may be said, then, that Ogden's entire theological project consists in the attempt to show that radical monotheism, which is the essential point of the Christian witness, is also the inclusive end of human existence. Witness and Existence pays tribute to Ogden by bringing together essays by eminent scholars in New Testament studies and philosophical theology, two fields which directly reflect his methodological concerns and his substantive contributions. The book honors Ogden precisely by engaging the fundamental issues which Ogden himself has taken so seriously.
The first group of essays presents careful analyses of issues basic to the early Christian witness; the second group examines the credibility of the Christian claim about God in terms of human experience. The editors' introductory essay provides the first comprehensive analysis yet to appear of Ogden's theology. A complete bibliography of his published writings is included as an appendix. x, 246 p.