Scripture as Real Presence

Sacramental Exegesis in the Early Church

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"I highly recommend this marvelous exploration of the sacramental reading of Scripture. Hans Boersma expertly and comprehensively opens up many different dimensions of the theological interpretation of Scripture--a category increasingly invoked today--as exemplified by the great practitioners of early Christianity. By bringing the insights gained into constructive dialogue with contemporary concerns, Boersma shows how Christ's real presence in Scripture can still be encountered today. A must-read both for those concerned with the hermeneutics of scriptural engagement and for those seeking to enrich their own reading of Scripture, this book is an indispensable resource."
--Fr. John Behr, St. Vladimir's Seminary, New York

"This volume makes an outstanding contribution to the retrieval of the ancient Christian biblical hermeneutic. Through a careful analysis of individual texts, Boersma demonstrates that patristic exegesis is not based on naive allegorizing but on a theology of history in which Christ is recognized as truly present in the words and deeds of the old covenant. This book will reinforce the growing consensus that patristic exegesis remains valid and indispensable for the church today."
--Mary Healy, Sacred Heart Major Seminary

"In the spirit of Henri de Lubac and Jean Daniélou, Hans Boersma here makes his own important contribution to the nature of biblical interpretation. Scripture as Real Presence is informed by a deep reading of the patristic tradition. With that tradition Boersma advocates for a sacramental approach to Scripture, contending that the mystery of the Christ event is already present in the Law and Prophets. This book offers a lively foray into the current debates about the theological interpretation of the Bible and its place in the academy and pulpit."
--Peter W. Martens, Saint Louis University

"A splendid and scholarly study! Here is required reading for any who are rightly intrigued by the renewed concern for the theological interpretation of Scripture. With astute awareness of contemporary prejudices, Boersma disarms both the Protestant rigorist who may be scandalized by the patristic emphasis on human virtue, and the historicist who dismisses ancient spiritual interpretation as arbitrary. All the while, he carefully and lovingly retrieves winsome writings of various church fathers, who taught that Scripture itself participates in the life of Christ and vitally changes the interpreter and the church when received according to that conviction."
--Edith M. Humphrey, Pittsburgh Theological Seminary


Hans Boersma, Author

Hans Boersma (PhD, University of Utrecht), a highly regarded theologian and an experienced preacher, is J. I. Packer Professor of Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia. He is the author of numerous critically acclaimed books, including Violence, Hospitality, and the Cross: Reappropriating the Atonement Tradition; Sacramental Preaching; Nouvelle Théologie and Sacramental Ontology: A Return to Mystery; and Heavenly Participation: The Weaving of a Sacramental Tapestry. He is also coeditor of The Oxford Handbook of Sacramental Theology.

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