The Stars Will Fall from Heaven: Cosmic Catastrophe in the New Testament and Its World
New York: T&T Clark, 2007 pp. xx + 300. $150.00
Library of New Testament Studies, 347
Description: The aim of this book is to establish and explore New Testament belief in the end of the world through an investigation of texts which - on the face of it - contain 'end of the world' language. It engages with recent discussion on how Jewish and early Christian 'end of the world' was meant to be understood, and interacts especially with N.T. Wright's proposals. The first part of the book is given over to background and focuses on the Old Testament, Jewish apocalyptic and related literature and Graeco-Roman sources. The latter have seldom been brought into play in previous discussion. The author shows that the Stoic material is especially relevant. The second part of the book concentrates on the New Testament evidence and explores in detail all the key texts. The pertinent texts are analyzed in terms of the kind of the 'end of the world' language they use - language of cosmic cessation, of catastrophe and conflagration. The main aim of the exegesis is to establish the extent to which the language is meant objectively, but there is further exploration of issues arising from the notions of the end of the world where they are deemed to be present, including whether the idea of the world's dissolution implies a rejection of the created order. The conclusion explores the implications of the theme of the end of the world for Christian theology and ethics, and discusses especially, the ramifications for environmental ethics.
Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Literature
Review by Lorenzo DiTommaso
Citation: Lorenzo DiTommaso, review of Edward Adams, The Stars Will Fall from Heaven: Cosmic Catastrophe in the New Testament and Its World, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2008).
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