Jesus-Shock

978-1-58731-394-3
Cloth $17; Audio CD $18
168 pages, 4¼" x 7", introduction, notes, index, audio cd pub date: October 2016

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Jesus-Shock

Kreeft, Peter

The point of the title: Imagine a storm has downed a telephone wire so that everyone who touches it is shocked in every cell of his body. Well, the storm of God’s crazy love has “downed” (incarnated) Jesus, and everyone who touches this “live wire” is shocked in every cell of his soul.

The question of the book: Why is “Jesus” the most non-neutral, the most controversial, the most embarrassing name in the world? Why is talking about Jesus like talking about sex?

This whole book is really about a single movie line, the greatest line in the greatest movie in history. Bet you know what it is. . . .

What was the bitterest controversy of the Protestant Reformation, both between Protestants and Catholics and between different Protestant denominations, the one that had both sides calling the other not just heretics but devils?

Answer: It was not Justification by Faith, the hallmark of the Reformation, even though that question is about nothing less momentous than how to be saved, how to get to Heaven. It was not the relation between religion and politics, even though that was a matter of life or death (literally, on battlefields and at guillotines and hangings) and not just a matter of truth or falsity, or of good or evil. It was not about the sufficiency of the Bible, or the corruption in the Church, or the relation between the Bible and the Church. It was not about the Pope, and the governance of the Church. It was not about Mary or saints or angels or Purgatory. It was not about the Incarnation or the Trinity or the Atonement.

It was about the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist.

Jesus-Shock, in addressing this controversy forcefully and faithfully, shows the reasons why to this day the name of “Jesus” stirs up controversy, even revulsion, in polite society. In the true spirit of ecumenism, it also points the way toward a true rapprochement among His modern-day disciples.

Peter Kreeft is the author of many works in philosophy and theology, among them Socratic Logic, The Philosophy of Jesus, and The Sea Within, all from St. Augustine’s Press. He teaches philosophy at Boston College.