Book Reviews -- By: Anonymous

Journal: Faith and Mission
Volume: FM 18:1 (Fall 2000)
Article: Book Reviews
Author: Anonymous


Book Reviews

Biblical Studies

Christ the Center, by George A. F. Knight. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1999. Pp. 88.

Professor George Knight, a retired professor of Old Testament studies, has held teaching posts in Hungary, Scotland, the United States, Fiji, and New Zealand. He presents Christ the Center from years of lecture material on the biblical view of God and the centrality of the Incarnation to the biblical message. Knight intends to demonstrate that the Incarnation is the message of the entire Bible not just the New Testament.

Knight approaches his topic with a heavy reliance on the Hebrew understanding of self, unity, and God. He rejects Greek dualism as being foreign to both the Old and New Testament writers. Greek thought accentuates a separation of body-soul and of material-spiritual. It leads to the belief that humans can rise to meet the Spirit of God in the spirit world. Alternatively, Hebraic thinking leads to the “concept of the Godhead becoming incarnate in human flesh” (p. 3). A proper understanding of God and His revelation through the Incarnation can only be achieved through the context of the Jewish authors. Knight asserts that God is essentially a unity and that the Hebrew language and mindset provides the best medium for Him to express Himself.

In the first three chapters, the author portrays the Hebrew language as the best mechanism for God to reveal Himself as a personal unity. Knight relates several Hebrew words that demonstrate the language is capable of using one term to encompass several dimensions. This characteristic of Hebrew is especially helpful in relating the revelation of God. The various names of God used in the Old Testament reveal Him as a supreme God that is determined to have personal interaction with His Creation. The author claims that God’s revelation of Himself as Trinity becomes obvious when a reader recognizes the multidimensional nature of the Hebrew language.

The central focus of Knight’s work occurs in chapter 4. Knight presents a detailed comparison of the first chapters of Genesis and the Gospel of John, respectively. Just as the “light” issues from the essence of God in Genesis 1, so does the Word as the “light of the world” in John 1. Knight goes on to indicate that Christ, the Word, is the fullness of God’s being and that no one has seen God, but God’s only Son has made Him known. Knight proclaims, “That then is what ‘Incarnation’ means. This is the fulfilment of covenant, this is the meaning of grace.”

Several matters of concern appear in Knight’s work. First, Knig...

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