Fall 1969

Page 60


The Resurrection of/es us and the Worldly Presence of the Church The resurrection of Jesus • from the dead is an event of fulfillment. The theologians of hope, notably Jürgen Moltmann and Wolfhart Pannenberg, have recently argued for the importance of the apocalyptic tradition as the appropriate context against which the New Testament, and particularly the resurrection of Jesus, is to be understood. While this emphasis in sorne respects marks a rather dramatic return in contemporary theology to the much earlier discoveries of Johannes Weiss and Albert Schweitzer, it is nonetheless quite distinctive in approach on a number of counts. While Schweitzer, for example, is concerned primarily with apocalyptic in the preaching and selfconsciousness of Jesus, the theologians of hope are mu ch more concernerl with apocalyptic as an interpretive key to the resurrection-event, which Schweitzer ignores in his quest of the historical Jesus. For the theologians of hope apocalyptic becornes the focus for perceiving the rightful place of Jesus and the raising of Jesus from the dead within the whole of salvation-history. The emergence of the apocalyptic tradition in the late Old Testament period marks the culmination of the history of promise into which Jesus must be inserterl, even if the resun·ection of Jesus does not simply bring the history of promise to a close. 287