Abstract
SummaryThe hiddenness of God in relation to opus alienum reflects, in Luther, a particular theological anthropology: one based on the limits of humanity and the futility of human action; and one that ascribes a certain role to suffering. One aspect of this account of the hiddenness of God is a figure whose terror remains unmitigated even by the light of salvation. In their discussions of the hiddenness of God, Karl Barth and Eberhard Jüngel reject this particular hiddenness of God. However, their theologies draw on the opus alienum, and in doing so, they examine and analyse the despair and anxiety that characterise it in their own discussions of evil as nothingness. These accounts of nothingness engage with philosophical accounts of nothingness as being that which prompts self-assertion and actualisation as authentic existence. However, this use of the opus alienum opens their theologies up to the figure that they rejected in their prior accounts of hiddenness: the hidden, alien, and terrifying God.
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DOI 10.1515/nzsth-2022-0002
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