this is the book i wanted to write…

April 20, 2008

“Dang. NT Wright beat me to it.”

That’s what keeps going through my head as I’ve been reading Surprised by Hope.

When I think of how I want to use my voice, one of the main themes that comes up is dualism. Simply put, dualism is the idea that this physical world is a mess and the only good is that which exists in some other spiritual reality. I want my voice to be one that is not for, but against, dualism.

I often evaluate Christian beliefs and practices in light of how they have been shaped by the influence of dualism. I see how it influences everything from our view of creation, to our view of eternity, to what our prayer requests look like.

In the interest of disclosure, I should say that this is likely a theme for me because it is also a theme in much of NT Wright’s writing, which I’ve read my fair share of. In Surprised by Hope, much of his thinking regarding the influence of dualism on Christian theology has been pulled together in one place. And it is pulled together well — at least in the third of it that I’ve read so far.

And yes, when it comes to writing this book, NT Wright surpasses me in research, credibility, prose, pedigree, name recognition, number of words actually written, and publishers willing to give it a look. And so, reminded of that, I offer what is now going through my head as I return to my reading: “This is the book I rightly hoped that NT Wright would write.”

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