Wolfhart Pannenberg (born on October 2, 1928) is a German theologian. He has made a number of significant contributions to modern theology, perhaps most notably his concept of history as a form of revelation centered on the Resurrection of Christ, which has been widely debated in both Protestant and Catholic theology, as well as by non-Christian thinkers.
My Thoughts on Pannenberg
On Pannenberg’s Methodology
In his Introduction to Systematic Theology, Pannenberg chooses to make his starting point for theology that of a personal relationship with God through Jesus. He statesread more
Personhood and the notion of self is an important topic in my research, both in regard to the Trinity and to spiritual formation. During my search for resources on the self and personhood I discovered this article from Pannenberg, but also discovered that it has never been officially translated into English. I passed my German exam, but do not have the skills to translate it, thus rendering this article a black box to me. (perhaps I should try to translate it, but I never did). Imagine my delight when I came across Sanders’ blog and was able to read this in English. It was like witnessing a beautiful blossom unfold before my eyes. Thank you!read more
The social Trinity begins with the three persons of the Trinity (as described in the Christian Scriptures) and seeks to understand how the relationship1 between the persons is the very essence2 of life itself. The fancy-schmansy word for this is relational ontology.3 The social Trinity is also known, by some, as the Economic Trinity. The term economic comes from the Greek word oikos–meaning house. It does not refer to money, as we understand economy, but, rather, refers to the activity of God within the “house” of the created universe. The social–or Economic– Trinity stands in contrast to the traditional view of God as three persons within Godself. This traditional view is known as the Immanent Trinity (immanent means “operating or existing within”) and emphasizes the oneness of God as God relates to the world from outside of creation.read more
the Greek word for essence can also be translated substance. The discussion of the substance of God–and of all things–is called ontology. Thus, the social Trinity speaks of a relational ontology as opposed to a substance ontology [↩]
This book is a helpful and refreshing counterbalance to my growing bibliography concerning the 20th century Trinitarian conversation in the West. Stephen Holmes is a brilliant scholar from the UK who speaks to this topic from the English Evangelical perspective.
The book itself is essentially an historical survey of the Doctrine of the Trinity in Western theology. What makes it fresh, and relevant to my research, is that Holmes frames his historical survey around the “revival” of Trinitarianism in the late 20th century. He begins there, then traces the big historical landmarks of the doctrinal evolution, and ends with a re-evaluation of the conversation. He is kind, and truly appreciative of this Trinitarian “revival,” but in the end, finds it lacking.read more