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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

A Cosmic Leap of Faith: An Authorial, Structural, and Theological Investigation of the Cosmic Christology in Col 1:15-20
Pizzuto, Vincent†A.

Leuven: Peeters, 2006 pp. xiv + 291. $50.00

Series Information
Contributions to Biblical Exegesis and Theology


Description: Among the array of christologies embodied within New Testament literature, the so-called "hymn" of Colossians 1:15-20 offers a unique and invaluable contribution to contemporary theological and inter-religious discourse. This is because it conveys what is arguably the highest christological affirmation within the canon. Pizzuto contends that the hymn is a creative and faith-filled composition by the same deutero-Pauline author of the Colossians epistle itself and demonstrates that there is an inextricable relationship between the chiastic structure of Col 1:15-20 and a proper understanding of its provenance, authorship and theology. Although the hymn echoes theological motifs consistent with Second Temple Judaism and loosely reflects a number of syncretistic influences, it is fundamentally the novelty of the "Christ-event," - the historical impact of Jesus of Nazareth - that has been most influential in determining the christological categories of Col 1:15-20 and its larger epistolary framework. Pizzuto thus defends the overall integrity of the hymn against those who would assert that it reflects a pre-Christian or pre-Colossians origin. He concludes that Col 1:15-20 represents something of a "leap" beyond Pauline christology into a new and unequivocal conviction of the cosmic implications of the Cross.

Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Deutero-Pauline Epistles, Colossians, Literature

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Review by Matthew E. Gordley
Published 9/15/2007
Citation: Matthew E. Gordley, review of Vincent A. Pizzuto, A Cosmic Leap of Faith: An Authorial, Structural, and Theological Investigation of the Cosmic Christology in Col 1:15-20, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2007).


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