The Christian tradition provides a wealth of insight into perennial human questions about the shape of the good life, human happiness, virtue, justice, wealth and poverty, spiritual growth, and much else besides -- and Christian scholars can do great good by bringing that rich tradition into conversation with the broader culture. But what is the nature and purpose of distinctively Christian scholarship, and what does that imply for the life and calling of the Christian scholar? What is it about Christian scholarship that makes it Christian? Ten eminent scholars grapple with such questions in this volume. They offer deep and thought-provoking discussions of the habits and commitments of the Christian scholar, the methodology and pedagogy of Christian scholarship, the role of the Holy Spirit in education, Christian approaches to art and literature, and more. CONTRIBUTORS Jonathan A. Anderson Dariusz M. Brycko Natasha Duquette M. Elizabeth Lewis Hall George Hunsinger Paul K. Moser Alvin Plantinga Craig J. Slane Nicholas Wolterstorff Amos Yong
In this volume some of the outstanding Christian scholars of our day reflect on how their minds have changed, how their academic fields have changed over the course of their careers, and the pressing issues that Christian scholars will need to address in the twenty-first century. This volume offers an accessible portrait of key trends in the world of Christian scholarship today. Christian Thought in the Twenty-First Century features scholars from Great Britain, Canada, the United States, and Switzerland. The contributors represent a wide variety of academic backgrounds--from biblical studies to theology, to religious studies, to history, English literature, philosophy, law, and ethics. This book offers a personal glimpse of Christian scholars in a self-reflective mode, capturing their honest reflections on the changing state of the academy and on changes in their own minds and outlooks. The breadth and depth of insight afforded by these contributions provide rich soil for a reader's own reflections, and an agenda that will occupy Christian thinkers well into the twenty-first century. Content and Contributors: Historical Perspectives on the Christian Tradition 1. Jesus and The Gospels, by Craig A. Evans 2. The Dwarfs are for the Dwarfs: Medieval Church History Today, by Dennis D. Martin 3. Reflections on Medieval English Literature, by Denis Renevey 4. Reflections of an Historian of Early Modern German Protestantism, by Douglas H. Shantz 5. Making Historical Theology, by Margaret R. Miles 6. Eastern Orthodoxy in the Twenty-First Century, by James R. Payton Jr. 7. Religion's Return, by Lamin Sanneh Philosophical and Theological Issues 8. The Christian Philosopher Today, by Terrence Penelhum 9. Christian Thought: An Agenda for the Future, by Clark H. Pinnock 10. Process Theology in Process, John B. Cobb Jr. 11. Christian Theology in a post-Christendom World, by Douglas John Hall Encounters with Religious Pluralism and the new Science 12. A New Way of Being Christian, by Paul F. Knitter 13. Comparative Theology, Keith Ward 14. Science and Religion in the Twenty-First Century, by John Polkinghorne 15. Bioethics: A Forum for Finding Shared Values in a Twenty-First Century Society, by Margaret Somerville The Academy and the City 16. "But have you kept the faith of your Ancestors?" Musings on the writing and teaching of the history of Christianity in a Secular Canada, by Marguerite Van Die 17. The Spiritual Quest, Christian Thought, and the Academy: Challenges, Commitments, and Considerations, by Charles Nienkirchen 18. Ecstatic Nerve: Fiction, Historical Narrative, and Christian theology in an Academic Setting, by Peter C. Erb 19. Athens and Jerusalem: Facing Both Ways in Calgary, by Alan P. F. Sell 20. The City and the Church, by Wesley A. Kort Approaches to English Literature and Film 21. Reflections on Literary Theory and Criticism, by Susan Felch 22. A Time of Promise and Responsibility: Teaching English Literature in the Christian Academy, by Arlette Zinck 23. Thomas Merton: Retrospect and Prospect, by Bonnie Thurston 24. Thomas Merton's Divinations for a Twenty-First Century Christian Reader, by Lynn Szabo 25. Christianity and the Cinema: An Interreligious Conversation, by Anne Moore Index
'Christians in the Twenty-First Century' examines Christianity as it is understood and practised both by active followers and those who regard themselves as Christian. The book opens with an examination of key Christian concepts - the Bible, the Creeds, the Church and the sacraments - and the major traditions of Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy and Protestantism as well as more recent movements. The book continues with an analysis of the challenges presented by the rise of science, new approaches to biblical scholarship, the rise of fundamentalist movements, the ordination of women, secularization, the interfaith movement, and the impact of the electronic revolution.
Being Christian in the Twenty-first Century was written to help struggling and doubting Christians develop an understanding of Christianity that avoids literalism, creeds, and doctrines—all factors which seem to be driving people away from the church. The book is well suited for individual or group study, complete with a study guide and sample lesson plans. It responds to the call for theological reform advocated by many contemporary clergy and religious leaders. Being Christian does not restate orthodox positions or drift into fundamentalism or sentimentalism. Instead it draws from a broad base of historical, theological, archaeological, and sociological scholarship to place Scripture within its original context, yet present it within a perspective suitable for the twenty-first-century mind. Being Christian is scholarly, yet readable, interesting, and often provocative. One reviewer put it this way, “the book reminds me of a baseball pitcher with a long wind up and a hard fastball getting better in every inning.” By building upon progressive thought available today and throughout history, it offers an important resource for Christians and would-be Christians seeking a more fulfilling and thoughtful faith journey.
'Restoring the First-century Church in the Twenty-first Century: Essays on the Stone-Campbell Restoration Movement in Honor of Don Haymes' is a snap-shot of a major American religious movement just after the turn of the millennium. When the ÒDisciplesÓ of Alexander Campbell and the ÒChristiansÓ of Barton Warren Stone joined forces early in the 19th century, the first indigenous ecumenical movement in the United States came into being. Two hundred years later, this American experiment in biblical primitivism has resulted in three, possibly four, large segments. Best known is the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), active wherever ecumenical Christians gather. The denomination is typically theologically open, having been reshaped by theological Liberalism and the Social Gospel in the twentieth century, and has been re-organized on the model of other Protestant bodies. The largest group, the Churches of Christ, easily distinguished by their insistence on 'a cappella' music (singing only), is theologically conservative, now tending towards the evangelical, and congregationally autonomous, though with a denominational sense of brotherhood. The Christian Churches/Churches of Christ (Independent) are a 'via media' between the two other bodies: theologically conservative and evangelical, congregationally autonomous, pastorally oriented, and comfortable with instrumental music. The fourth numerically significant group, the churches of Christ (Anti-Institutional), is a conservative reaction to the 'a cappella' churches, much in the way that the Southern ''a capella' churches reacted against the emerging intellectual culture and social location, instrumental music and institutional centrism of the Northern Disciples following the Civil War. Besides these four, numerous smaller fragments, typically one-article splinter groups, decorate the history of the Restoration Movement: One-Cup brethren, Premillennialists, No-Sunday-School congregations, No-Located-Preacher churches, and others. This movement to unite Christians on the basis of faith and immersion in Jesus Christ, and to restore New-Testament Christianity, is too little recognized on the American religious landscape, and it has been too little studied by the academic community. This volume is focused primarily on the 'a cappella' churches and their interests, but implications for the entire Stone-Campbell Restoration Movement abound. The voices that speak freely within were unimpeded in authoring these essays by standards of orthodoxy imposed from without. All of the contributors are acquainted with Don Haymes, the honoree of the volume, and have been inspired by this friend and colleague, a man with a rigorous and earthy intellect and a heavenly spirit. David Bundy, series editor Studies in the History and Culture of World Christianities
This work introduces Walls's work and explores its wide-ranging implications for the understanding of history, mission, the formative place of Africa in the Christian story, and the cross-cultural transmission of faith.
One of the most powerful forces in the twenty-first century is the increasing phenomenon of globalization. In nearly every realm of human activity, traditional boundaries are disappearing and people worldwide are more interconnected than ever. Christianity has also become more aware of global realities and the important role of the church in non-Western countries. Church leaders must grapple with the implications for theology and ministry in an ever-shrinking world. Globalizing Theology is a groundbreaking book that addresses these issues of vital importance to the church. It contains articles from leading scholars, including Tite Tiénou, Kevin Vanhoozer, Charles Van Engen, M. Daniel Carroll R., Andrew Walls, Vinoth Ramachandra, and Paul Hiebert. Topics covered include the challenges that globalization brings to theology, how we can incorporate global perspectives into our thinking, and the effect a more global theology has on a variety of important issues.
This book explores the role of emotions and affections in the Christian tradition from historical and theological perspectives, especially related to the work of the Holy Spirit. Although historians and scholars from a range of traditions—including Wesleyan, Pentecostal, and Pietist—have engaged these issues, there has yet to be a sustained examination of the role of emotions and affectivity across the Christian tradition. By retrieving the complex discussion about affectivity in Christian tradition and bringing its many voices into dialogue within a contemporary ecumenical context, the contributors also point toward a number of new research trajectories. The essays underscore the need to understand the shift in Western views of emotion that began in the late eighteenth century. They also explore in detail the vocabulary of affectivity as it has developed in the Christian tradition. As part of this development, the contributors reveal the importance of pneumatology in Western as well as Eastern Christianity, calling into question the idea of a pneumatological deficit advanced by some constructive theologians and addressing the relationship between affectivity and the pedagogical strategies that enable persons to cooperate with the work of grace in the soul. Finally, several essays explore the relationship between the erotic, the ecstatic, and affectivity in religious belief. This volume will interest scholars and students of historical theology, of emotions in theology, and of Christian renewal or charismatic movements.
This book offers the rare opportunity to assess, within a single volume, the leading schools of thought in contemporary philosophy of religion. Their exponents seek to meet objections made to their point of view and to relate it to the other schools represented. Further discussions between adherents of the different schools make it an ideal text for assessing the deep proximities and divisions which characterize contemporary philosophy of religion. The schools of thought represented are: Philosophical Theism, Reformed Epistemology, Wittgensteinianism, Postmodernism, Critical Theory and Process Thought.
In this multidisciplinary interpretation of world Christianity and the changing shape of the global religious landscape, scholars consider the complex dynamics shaping Christianity's recent expansion in all parts of the globe. They view the explanations of homogenization or American cultural influence as being necessarily limited and point to the far more varied intersections of external influence and indigenous appropriation. The geographical coverage and the voices from various corners of the globe exemplify the shift of Christianity's center of gravity away from the northern hemisphere. New voices, new methods, and new perspectives emerge here. Contributors: Afe Adogame Edith L. Blumhofer Joel Carpenter Paul Freston Anthony dela Fuente Jehu J. Hanciles Brian M. Howell Ogbu U. Kalu Sebastian C. H. Kim Philomena Njeri Mwaura John Parratt Dana L. Robert Brian Stanley Diane Stinton Feiya Tao Kevin Xiyi Yao
Religion has played a major role in both the division and unification of peoples and countries within Africa. Its capacity to cause, and to heal, societal rifts has been well documented. This book addresses this powerful societal force, and explores the implications of a theology of reconstruction, most notably articulated by Jesse Mugambi. This way of thinking seeks to build on liberation theology, aiming to encourage the rebuilding of African society on its own terms. An international panel of contributors bring an interdisciplinary perspective to the issues around reconstructing the religious elements of African society. Looking at issues of reconciliation, postcolonialism and indigenous spirituality, among others, they show that Mugambi’s cultural and theological insight has the potential to revolutionise the way people in Africa address this issue. This is a fascinating exploration of the religious facets of African life. As such, it will be of great interest to scholars of religious studies, theology and African studies.