As I am finishing annotations on Gentle and Lowly, I am further and further convinced that perhaps the central theological problem is the impassibility of God. Ortland pays dues to the doctrine, but he explicitly takes up Robert Lister’s thesis that God is “impassible and impassioned.” Lister follows after Barth in arguing for a God who has emotions. I think that is a big mistake, and it undergirds most of the problems Ortland steps into. At the root, it is in contradiction with the impassibility of God.
I’ve included more helpful videos below on this topic. I think James Dolezal is probably the single most helpful theologian on this topic right now.
But I don’t want to sour my review before it kicks off. I will be aiming for an assessment that is charitable and reasonable. Ortland is my brother in the Lord, and despite misgivings I have about his book, I have benefitted from some of his writing.
Watch these when you get some time: