The cross of Christ : a theological metaphor for salvation: a biblical study in Pauline theology
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This thesis studies the cross of Christ as a theological metaphor for salvation, specifically focusing upon Pauline theology in three sections: biblical, theological and contextual. Knowing that the cross was understood as a metaphor of violence and suffering in Brazilian context (whose evangelization was with the cross and sword) this present research attempts to identify the reasons why the cross is meant a symbol of Christian identity and, in many cases, a fetish. ln order to analyze exegetically the cross as salvation, the theories offered by Sallie McFague (Metaphorical Theology) and A. J. Greimas (Discourse Analysis) were applied on the texts of I Corinthian I :26-29 and Romans 3:21-26. Both comparisons affirmed that the event of Jesus' crucifixion was a figurative discourse of God's justice manifesting his salvific action through Jesus' sacrifice. As a matter of discussion, a provocative study on pastoral ministry was done, in an effort to show the paradox between the theology of the cross and the theology of prosperity. Having the theology of the cross as a contextual theology, whose theory is provided by Douglas John Hall, the conclusion was that pastors adhered to the theology of prosperity because they are in competition with other denominations and what the cross has meant in the past. This thesis affirms that the concept of salvation through Jesus' death can be restored and gives orientation towards how the cross is a missiological paradigm. It also gives suggestions for how seminaries can be oriented in a way that will be most helpful to mission of the church in Brazil.