Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Systematic Theology

First Advisor

Kent Burreson

Scripture References in this Resource

Mark 13:32; 1 Corinthians 12:27; 1 Corinthians 15:20; Isaiah 7:14; John 1:10; John 1:14; Leviticus 20:24; Mark 16:16; Matthew 18:20; Matthew 28:20; Romans 10:17; Romans 6:4; Romans 6:8


Davenport, Richard A. "Promissio Spei: God's Eschatological Action in the Church. “Ph.D. diss., Concordia Seminary, 2012. 213 pp.

This dissertation, a work in systematic theology, examines the nature of Christian hope in the context of current scholarship in systematic theology. Its goal is to assess the way in which Christian hope is rooted in God's word of promise and the extent to which that promise affects Christian life. The eschatological outlook presented in Scripture shows that God's promises, and the hope that they offer, are presented to all of creation. This dissertation investigates the process by which the communication of hope from God's word to creation takes place, as well as the implications of that hope for all who come in contact with it. The dissertation conducts an investigation of the places where God's word enters into creation to see how hope is created by it.

In a hope-filled eschatology, God's word is found not only in the direct, proclaimed word, but also in the sacraments that form the foundation for Christian life. This promise of God directs Christians toward the future that he is creating and calls them to be a part of that future. The sacraments form a connecting point between the present world and the future that God is creating. This enables Christians to interact with that future and experience it. This further allows their hope in God's promises to take shape as they see for themselves what God is creating.

The liturgy of the worship service that surrounds the sacraments helps Christians to understand what it is they are experiencing by connecting Christian eschatology to their everyday life. It also turns their attention to the world outside the church that is in need of the hope given by God. The liturgy sets them on the path to carry that hope out into the world through their lives.

The eschatological Christian hope is not intended only for humanity, but all of creation. One way that creation experiences this hope is in the work Christians do in the world. The act of caring for creation and for the world brings a piece of the future back into the present and gives concrete form to God's promises.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.