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Is Christianity Life-affirming?

Henry, Martin (2006) Is Christianity Life-affirming? Irish Theological Quarterly, 71 (3-4). pp. 348-349.

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Abstract

‘What does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?’, Jesus asks in the Gospels (Mk 8. 36). ‘Here we have no abiding city,’ we read in the Letter to the Hebrews (Heb 13. 14). ‘I want no more of what men call life,’ wrote Ignatius of Antioch, one of early Christianity’s most reputable witnesses, literally, in his Epistle to the Romans (§8). The Middle Ages, for their part, are saturated with works on the theme of contempt for, or flight from, the world. Indeed the very notion of ‘worldliness’ is suspect in traditionally Christian cultures. And, last but not least, the idea of renouncing worldly joys, of abandoning house and home or the possibility of founding a family of one’s own ‘for the sake of the kingdom of heaven’ (cf. Mt 19. 12, 29), has in the course of Christian history been seen as not merely compatible with, but as the most authentic expression of, Christian faith.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Christianity
Subjects: Arts, Celtic Studies & Philosophy > Theology
Item ID: 654
Depositing User: Martin Henry
Date Deposited: 10 Aug 2007
Journal or Publication Title: Irish Theological Quarterly
Publisher: Pontifical University Maynooth
Refereed: Yes
URI:

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