Having read most of a pre-publication version of this book (thanks to Dennis for first telling me about this), I can highly recommend it. It is bound to provoke the reader to deeper reflection. There are points of startling and refreshing insight. Even where I found myself disagreeing with Knight, I often left with a deeper understanding of the subjects that he was treating. Knight opens his book with the following words:—
This is a book of Christian theology. Theology is what the church does when it checks that it is fully expressing and passing on the word it receives from God. This book relates our understanding of time and history to Christian theology, to conform our understanding of ourselves to the theological truth that God is changing us. “Sanctification” is the term the Christian tradition uses for the process of our transformation. In this book I connect the concept of paideia, our formation, with the doctrine of sanctification. It is a very old theme in Christian theology, associated with Irenaeus, that God always intended come to humankind and stay with them, and that in the course of this coming humankind would grow up—a process delayed, but not halted, by sin and rebellion. This book discusses the ways in which Christian doctrine and biblical studies tackle this issue of the education or formation of humanity, and in particular the role of the people of Israel in this process. It explores the relationship of sacrifice, along with other models of the work of Christ, to sanctification, and it reexamines the connections between Israel, Jesus Christ, time, history, and Scripture, by closely linking them to the Christian doctrine of God.
Any of us who have thought a lot about the maturation of humanity as a governing theme in our understanding of God’s work in history will find much to engage with in this book.
If you want a better sense of Knight’s book, I strongly recommend that you read the lengthy engagement with the book on Solly Gratia.