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John Paul II’s Theology of the Body

Man and Woman He Created Them: A Theology of the Body by John Paul II addresses many of today’s prominent issues. John Paul II provides a remarkable response to the world’s sexual dysfunction by examining one of the masterpieces of God’s creation, the human body. The pontiff’s theology was originally shared as a series of Wednesday audience addresses—129 lectures over more than five years. The theology of the body, John Paul II’s first major teaching as pope, has inspired dozens of supplementary texts.

Denying the popular culture’s false dichotomies, the pontiff argues that the goodness and beauty of sex—a part of God’s creation—demands Christian respect. Culture’s drive to reduce sex to recreation must be resisted not because sex is inherently immoral, but because sex is an integral aspect of the human person made in the image of God. Within the context of this discussion, the pope points the way forward—the Christian’s response to the culture’s false “sexual liberation” is to seek true liberation in relationships of life-giving love.

The best place to go for the pope’s unadulterated theology is Man and Woman He Created Them, a collection of the pope’s Wednesday audience addresses translated by Dr. Michael Waldstein of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology. But these lectures are so carefully crafted, and so beautifully interconnected, that it’s easy to miss some of the more interesting nuances. Logos’ Theology of the Body Collection (7 vols.) provides more access points to John Paul II’s writings, as well as Christopher West’s Theology of the Body Explained, a detailed companion to Man and Woman He Created Them written to elucidate certain points and trends that might otherwise be missed in the first (or second, or third) readthrough.

The collection features resources for theologians at every level. Whether you’ve never heard of the theology of the body before or you’ve taught it for years, Logos’ collection will help you discover more (and do so easily). By thoroughly linking the texts, Logos provides an interconnected framework for your study. From any book, you can dive deeper into the original lectures and into John Paul II’s sources, or step into clearer, more understandable summaries of the concepts. Familiarize yourself with the main points until you feel comfortable diving into the more scholarly ideas. This collection and the Logos platform make the process simple and fruitful for anyone.

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