The role of scripture in the theology of Jürgen Moltmann

Author: Coombe, Cameron Daniel

Date: 2020

Publisher: University of Otago

Type: Thesis

Link to this item using this URL:

University of Otago


The sum total of dissertations engaging Jürgen Moltmann’s work—numbering over 400—is testament to both his widespread appeal and the controversy of his claims. But while Moltmann’s interlocutors provide significant comment on key issues in his theology, the role that Scripture plays in his project is often only given limited attention, or even overlooked completely. This dissertation thus seeks to shed light on this frequently neglected aspect of Moltmann’s theology. In attending to the “role” of Scripture in Moltmann’s theology, this disserta-tion’s aim is twofold. First, it will investigate the nature of Scripture according to Moltmann—its relationship to God, the church, and wider humanity. Second, it will address the function of Scripture in his theology—how it informs other areas of the-ological construction, such as eschatology, the theology of the cross, and the doctrine of the Trinity. Taking up this definition, the dissertation proceeds through six chap-ters to explore the role of Scripture in Moltmann’s early theology; Theology of Hope; the eschatology and political theology of the mid- to late-sixties; The Crucified God; the doctrine of the Trinity leading up to and in The Trinity and the Kingdom; and later theology—particularly Experiences in Theology. In addition to various insights arising from studies of these different periods, this dissertation concludes with three key claims. First, Scripture plays a central and non-negotiable role in the construction of Moltmann’s theology. He cannot be properly understood apart from his this commitment. Second, Moltmann invokes a contrastive paradigm throughout his career, identifying allegedly non-biblical fea-tures in traditional and contemporary theology, and answering these with his own proposals derived from the biblical text. Third, Moltmann can be profitably under-stood as a “speculative” theologian—in the best sense of the term. He is not bound to a particular hermeneutic but reads Scripture creatively in order to open up new directions in theology. The dissertation includes a comprehensive index of biblical references in Moltmann's English works.

Subjects: Jürgen Moltmann, theology, hermeneutics, Bible, Scripture, index

Citation: ["Coombe, C. D. (2020). The role of scripture in the theology of Jürgen Moltmann (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy). University of Otago. Retrieved from"]

Copyright: All items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.