Unexpected Jesus: The Gospel as Surprise has just been published by Cascade Books. Click here to order a copy.
Dr. Craig Hovey says that his new book offers a theology of hope, waiting, and promise from the perspective of the resurrection of Jesus. It asks what kind of knowing is most appropriate if the God Christians worship is a living God and the Christian gospel is a surprise. "It took a lot of time for this book to come together," Hovey says. "There's a lot in it that simply required a great deal of thinking that couldn't be hurried. I can't wait to use it in my Christology class in the Spring."
1. You say in your introduction that, for Christians, knowing God is fundamentally different from knowing other things. How so?
As Christians, we always need to be on our guard against idolatry. We can certainly make an idol out of God if our knowing him is limiting and controlling. It’s obvious that knowing God is more like knowing a person than knowing a piece of information. And when you know a person, they can surprise you. If you are too surprised by what someone does, you might think you never really knew this person to begin with. Or they might be acting out of character, acting differently from how they usually act. And while we only know what a person is like by what they’ve done, so long as they’re alive, they’re free to act in ways that enlarge our sense of what they’re like. Especially because of the resurrection of Christ, we know that God is a living God. We never “have” God, nor is God at our disposal. We’re are at his disposal!