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God’s Gamble

God’s Gamble

The Gravitational Power of Crucified Love

By Gil Bailie

384 pp

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About the Book

The Cross of Christ has left a crater at the center of history, an inflection of sacrificial love toward which everything before and after this event is ordered and properly understood. That Christ is the Alpha and Omega—the logic, the meaning of creation itself, from whom the drama of salvation emanates and toward whom it moves—is a central but often neglected doctrine of Catholic Christianity. Though it is a mystery that will ever elude rational explication, sufficient traces of it can be found. Drawing primarily on the insights of René Girard and Hans Urs von Balthasar, Gil Bailie’s new book is a work of reconnaissance, an effort to locate and explicate some of these traces. He presents a narrative of both rich and subtle textures—the story of God’s gamble in and on history.



God’s Gamble is a vividly written, engaging account, at once personal and provocative, of man’s search for meaning. Designed for a general audience, Bailie’s unique telling of the story of Christian revelation invites the reader to a rich reflection on the meaning of the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and to deeper readings in the grand intellectual tradition of the Christian West.”


O.F.M. Cap., Archbishop of Philadelphia

“This is a masterful synthesis of insights from Girard and Balthasar, among others, in an attempt to take seriously the proposition that Christ is the fulcrum upon which all of human history turns. Bailie accepts Balthasar’s judgment that eschatology is the storm center of the theology of our times and carefully unpacks the issues of greatest pastoral relevance.”


Dean, John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family (Melbourne)

“This remarkable book is both demanding and deeply penetrating, a Girardian tour de force plumbing the depths of the current postmodern malaise and presenting a rich Christology and a robust anthropology, both of which will challenge readers to see salvation history with new eyes.”


author of Did Jesus Really Rise From the Dead? and co-editor of Called To Be the Children of God

“With God’s Gamble, Gil Bailie has written his masterwork. He shares the fruits of a lifetime of patient reflection upon the innovative anthropological hypotheses of René Girard and the fearless theological explorations of Hans Urs von Balthasar. The result is a breathtaking synthesis that meditates on all the most puzzling questions of human history. In a spirit of humility, Bailie investigates what we can know about both the origin and the destiny of humankind. It is a wondrous history that becomes all the more fascinating as we continue to learn more about it through evolutionary science, cultural anthropology, and theological contemplation.”


Seminary of Christ the King, British Columbia

“As the civilization formed by Catholic Christianity renounces its own patrimony, many have forgotten what it means to be human. In Gil Bailie such lost souls have a guide to return to sanity, and a fearless one at that, willing to lead them, and us all, through the difficulties of violence, death, sin, sacrifice, resurrection, and hope. An outstanding book, and one I’m eager to read again.”


Director, Center on the University and Intellectual Life, Witherspoon Institute

About the Author

Gil Bailie is the founder and president of The Cornerstone Forum, a founding member of The Colloquium on Violence and Religion, a member of the College of Fellows of the Dominican School of Philosophy & Theology and the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars. For many years Mr. Bailie has worked to bring René Girard’s extraordinary anthropological contribution to human self-understanding into fruitful dialogue with the theological tradition represented by Benedict XVI, Henri de Lubac, Hans Urs von Balthasar and others. He is the author of Violence Unveiled: Humanity at the Crossroads (1995).

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