chapter  4
16 Pages

Reinhold Niebuhr

Faith in and beyond history
WithScott R. Paeth

The central challenge in any consideration of Reinhold Niebuhr’s understanding of faith is the unsystematic and ad hoc nature of much of his writing. Niebuhr’s conception of faith needs to be understood in the context of his anthropology and his understanding of the relationship between God and history. Faith played a central role in Niebuhr’s analysis of the role Christianity plays within the historical drama, and in his understudying of Christian responsibility within social and political life. Emil Brunner is interested in understanding the structure and dynamics of Christian faith, and in articulating that faith from within the Christian tradition per se. Richard and Paul Tillich are concerned with understanding faith in its general sense and working their way into the Christian tradition from that general outline.