"Joseph son of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife, because the child she carries was conceived by the Holy Spirit."
Birth of Jesus
18 This is how the birth of Jesus Christ took place. When Mary his mother was engaged to Joseph, before they were married, she became pregnant by the Holy Spirit. 19 Joseph her husband was a righteous man. Because he didn’t want to humiliate her, he decided to call off their engagement quietly. 20 As he was thinking about this, an angel from the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “ Joseph son of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife, because the child she carries was conceived by the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you will call him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins. ” 22 Now all of this took place so that what the Lord had spoken through the prophet would be fulfilled:
( Emmanuel means “ God with us. ” )
24 When Joseph woke up, he did just as an angel from God commanded and took Mary as his wife. 25 But he didn’t have sexual relations with her until she gave birth to a son. Joseph called him Jesus.
The book addresses five specific Christian doctrines: creation, Christology, sin, church, and heaven, offering historical background and systematic framework for understanding what is at stake in each for contemporary Christians. Further, each chapter presents the reader with a discussion, and an example, of a basic tool used in thinking through the Christian faith theologically. The chapter on creation involves biblical hermeneutics; the chapter on Christology explains systematic theology; the chapter on sin describes differences between Protestant, Roman Catholic, and liberation theologies. The overarching framework of the text also introduces the reader to postliberal narrative theology and then moves into how this type of theology can be developed in current pastoral settings into a vision of theology as performed within the lives of Christians.