AbstractThis thesis examines and critiques the doctrine that Christ assumes our fallen humanity as explicated in the theology of T.F. Torrance. This is done by expounding the theological structures of Torrance’s Christology. In addition to analysis of dogmatic concepts, it examines the narrative of Israel’s history and the life of Christ up to, and including, the cross as expounded by Torrance. This dogmatic-narrative approach allows us to see, with greater depth and clarity, precisely how Christ’s assumption of our fallen humanity works itself out
across the whole of Torrance’s Christology. The thesis demonstrates, first, that the assumption of fallen human nature is a pervasive and determinative facet of Torrance’s Christology, andindeed, for much of his theology. It is either coupled with, or conceptually behind, a number of debated areas in Torrance scholarship. Second, it demonstrates that, on numerous fronts,
Torrance has not made the concept fully intelligible. Primarily, through an examination of the human will of Christ, we show that the humanity which he assumed is in an incoherent state, both throughout his historical life and at the cross. Third, and deeply related, by examining the
anhypostasia-enhypostasia couplet, we demonstrate that there is a “split” in the assumption of our fallen flesh in Torrance. This, we contend, is a direct result of Torrance’s affirmation that Christ assumes fallen humanity. This “split” entails an additional split in the way the hypostatic union works within the incarnate mediator and the way it works in its interaction with others.
We conclude that Torrance has presented us with a virtual dogmatics of concept that “the unassumed is the unhealed,” yet one which has not sufficiently clarified that status of the humanity of Christ prior to the resurrection.
|Date of Award||1 Jun 2012|
|Supervisor||Andrew McGowan (Supervisor) & Philip Ziegler (Supervisor)|