The Fire and the Cloud
A Biblical Christology
Imprint: Baylor University Press
Sales Date: 2024-03-30
375 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 x 1.32 in
- Published: April 2024
The Fire and the Cloud is a non-supersessionist biblical Christology developed from close readings of Israel’s Scriptures. In this work, the second in a trilogy that began with All Things Beautiful: An Aesthetic Christology, Chris E. W. Green tracks the recurrent and interwoven themes of exile, journey, and return across the canonical order, beginning with the story of Cain’s exile and ending with the homecoming of Naomi and Ruth. He examines crucial passages and their significance in later Jewish and Christian interpretations, reckoning honestly with the history of Christian anti-Jewishness and reminding us of the good news that the nations are being grafted into the people of God.
Beginning to end, Green’s figural—indeed, mystical—Christology lays itself open to the mysterious and transformative power of imaginative exegesis, seeking both to honor Israel’s unique, ongoing vocation as the people of God and to honor the church’s faith in and witness to Jesus, striving not to impose a dead image of him onto the ancient texts but to recognize his living likeness in their Spirit-inspired movements.
Green believes such interpretation is necessary and necessarily difficult, requiring us to read both with and against the grain of our convictions and commitments, expecting and allowing the biblical texts to teach us what we did not know we needed to learn differently. This is so, he argues, because a biblical Christology, if it is to be true to its purposes, must be capable of surprising us as the living word of the living Christ—confronting us in judgment, decentering us in praise, and sweeping us up into the covenant-making work of the Spirit for the sake of the nations.
7 Exile as Exodus
8 Settlement as Occupation
9 Pilgrimage as Homecoming