West End United Methodist Church

Alive: Re-engaging Theologies of Hope, Session 6: The Johannine Tradition and the Future of Hope

Speakers:Matthew Charlton

In this session, “The Johannine Tradition and the Future of Hope,” Matt Charlton begins with a look at a number of writings of Paul, since Paul uses the word “hope” quite frequently.  In his writing, how does Paul envision hope?   He sees it embedded in faith and love – “Faith, hope, and love,” and Charlton re-reads 1 Cor. 13 substituting the word, “hope,” for the word, “love,” as he reads.  He then shifts to a passage from Lamentations where there may yet be hope and wonders whether hope is born out of lament.  He then looks to the Gospel of John, illustrating Jesus’ sharing a meal as a sign of hope, and Charlton tells us to remember that as we take communion – a message of hope.  Matthew W. Charlton is an ordained elder in the Tennessee Conference, teaching at Belmont University and Vanderbilt Divinity School, but currently at Garrett Evangelical Seminary.  He holds Master of Divinity and Master of Arts in Religion degrees from Vanderbilt and a PhD in contemporary theology from Garrett Evangelical Seminary.