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Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Image of God$
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Richard W. Wills

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195308990

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195308990.001.0001

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King’s Theological Implications

King’s Theological Implications

(p.113) 5 King’s Theological Implications
Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Image of God

Richard Wayne Wills Sr

Oxford University Press

This chapter provides a theological summary of King’s image of God conception and provides an overview of the implications attached to King’s theological anthropology. As such, this chapter provides a necessary reconsideration of King’s approach to theology with respect to his understanding of civil rights, his theological relationship to the black church, and the degree to which his mediated conception of human nature—particularly during his latter years—led to a dialectical tension between that of his anthropology and his heightened eschatological view. At bottom, it can be said that King shared aspects of black church theology, but he did so without wholly rejecting liberalism’s spirit of optimism regarding human progress.

Keywords:   implications, reconsideration, eschatological, liberalism, optimism, dialectical, mediated, human nature

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