The Imago Dei and Election: Reading Genesis 1:26-28 and Old Testament Scholarship with Karl Barth

Nathan MacDonald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Barth's treatment of the imago dei within his interpretation of the Genesis creation story (CD III/1) divides biblical scholars and dogmaticians. In an attempt to bridge the impasse Barth's relational interpretation is re-examined. A narrow focus on the small print exegesis of Genesis 1:26-28 has often led to Barth being misread. In contrast, attention is given to Barth's hermeneutical principles and his exegesis is placed within the wider context of his understanding of the creation story. Even in terms of his own hermeneutic Barth's reading of the imago is shown to be problematic. This hermeneutic can, however, be applied to provide a reading of the imago as a relationship to God and the world analogous to Israel's election. Such a reading is exegetically defensible and theologically suggestive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-327
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Journal of Systematic Theology
Volume10
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2008

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