Lewis. It was written in his retirement and pulls together material he has published over the years. Carl F. H. Henry’s God, Revelation, and Authority: Henry does not quite have the stature of the other eight theologians, but he did provide the most notable evangelical critique of liberal and Barthian theology. Balthasar Hubmaier’s The Christian Baptism of Believers: Lively treatise on believer’s baptism, written by a man who surely would have become a prolific and powerful theologian had he not been burned at the stake. A few weeks ago, a friend of mine sent me his list of twenty-five books and it “got me to thinkin.” So here’s my list, but before I give the list, allow me to make several comments. Best known for his work in ecclesiology (theology… Although I differ from him in some respects (e.g. (Note: The first time I read a volume of the Dogmatics, way back in 1996, I felt like a ferret swimming in a bucket of Codeine ®.). I was mesmerized by the depth and beauty of Barth’s writing when I was an M.Div. 2. I’ll warn you, however, on two counts: First, this book is nearly 1300 pages. ecclesiology), Our Reasonable Faith is a lucid and compelling account of the Christian faith. A few "period" pieces also made the list of 90. Johnson and Coe’s book is a light-hearted satire on all types of Christian theology. One might start with Timothy Tennent’s Theology in the Context of World Christianity, which is a systematic theology compendium of essays written by global theologians, or one of Veli-Matti Karkkainen’s multi-volume set (e.g. The Final Days of Jesus: The Most Important Week of the Most Important Person Who Ever Lived. Three Towering Theologians in Baptist History. “One of the influential books for me early in my theological education was Newbigin’s ‘The Gospel in a Pluralist Society.’ I read this book when I began my M.Div. What five titles would you suggest? The best books on OT Theology ranked by scholars, journal reviews, and site users. Martin Luther’s Commentary on Romans: Luther’s Romans is a fascinating and slim little volume that arises from the lectures he gave on the book of Romans from 1515 until 1516, as he was coming to a realization of justification by faith. This in turn convinced me that as a theologian I would also need to be the best amateur Bible scholar I could be.”, John Burgess Calvin’s Institutes by John Calvin. Alister McGrath’s Christian Theology: This is perhaps the best concise “historically-informed” systematic theology. “By being both Biblical and intensely connected to the present context, this book redefines God for the church today.”, Drew Smith Black and Free by Tom Skinner. ethical monism). Reading this book helped me to see that being a faithful Christian doesn’t mean I have to be ‘apolitical.’ In fact, it convinced me that as Christians, our theological commitments are precisely what should motivate us to take action to address the problems we see in the world around us.”, Andrew Purves Theology of Hope by Jürgen Moltmann and The Christian Doctrine of God: One Being Three Persons by Thomas F. Torrance. Discover the best Catholic Theology in Best Sellers. 42-page PDF sample. Goheen & Bartholomew begin by expounding the Christian worldview as it arises from the biblical narrative, and follow this with an exposition of Western intellectual history, a brief treatment of contextualization, and finally a brief exposition of how to think and live Christianly in various areas of public life (arts, education, sports, etc.). Follow us: About us. The main issue I have with Barth is his deficient view of Scripture, which led to a deficient method, which led to some heterodox conclusions (such as his implicit universalism). ** An important theological scholar explores Luther’s teachings about life in the world, including both Luther’s doctrine of vocation and his doctrine of the Two Kingdoms. Craig Bartholomew and Michael Goheen’s The Drama of Scripture: Bartholomew and Goheen have given us a fine introduction to biblical theology, organized around the biblical narrative in six plot movements. You may especially enjoy working through this book day by day during the Passion week (this year = April 13–20): [Read more…] about The Most Important Week of the Most Important Person Who Ever Lived Thomas Aquinas’ Summa Theologiae: This book is perhaps the most enduringly influential text in Christian history, apart from the Bible. Books. “For the Life of the World speaks about the nature of the human being as a creature made to worship and give thanks. In other words, I would have to learn interpreting Jesus both in terms of the church’s creeds and in terms of his very particular historical context, and I would have to learn to see these are not opposites, but imply one another. Have all new posts delivered straight to your inbox. James Hal Cone (1938–2018) was an American theologian, best known for his advocacy of black theology and black liberation theology.His 1969 book Black Theology and Black Power provided a new way to comprehensively define the distinctiveness of theology in the black church. Heather Vacek Stations of the Heart by Richard Lischer and Race: A Theological Account by J. Cameron Carter. “The book draws attention to divine pathos in the Old Testament – to God’s suffering for, with, and because of humankind – and therefore helps us understand how the Old Testament anticipates the cross of Jesus Christ.”, Angela Hancock Church Dogmatics Vol. Nevertheless, the theology context of the Old Testament is necessary for a full understanding of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Lisher’s text offers a deeply moving theological account of suffering, salvation, grace, and love. Now they want to read the most important books in theology that were written during that time. While I disagree with portions of the book now, Newbigin’s thought and work remains deeply influential.”, Jerome Creach The Suffering of God: An Old Testament Perspective by Terence Fretheim. The new Study Bible from Zondervan … “When I read the Institutes, I feel as though I have come home theologically. Another option is Irenaeus’ Demonstration of the Apostolic Preaching. “As I am working on creation themes in Scripture and the intersection between science and theology, I keep remembering how important John Polkinghorne’s book “The Faith of a Physicist: Reflections of a Bottom-Up Thinker” has been for my own theology and biblical study. Millard Erickson’s Christian Theology: This book by Erickson is the finest Baptist theology of our generation. These works are some of the most influential books because they began or at least represent the beginning of entire movements and schools of thought in the fields of science, math, and geography. Hedgehogs know one big thing; foxes know many little things. However, in terms of a book that has sustained and influenced me over the long term, I think I would choose Thomas F. Torrance’s The Christian Doctrine of God: One being Three Persons. We have included books which do not always prompt agreement, but which are important for evangelical Christians to read and contend with. For the reader who wants an accessible introduction, this is probably the best choice. The Christian Faith reflects his mature thought, is not at all brief, and is a bit easier to read. Johnson and Coe are not prejudiced; they are equal opportunity offenders and nobody gets off un-teased. Thomas Oden’s Classic Christianity: Oden is a Methodist theologian who brings to bear a wealth of historical theology upon his systematic. Finally, the fourth gospel. This book is based on his 1993-1994 Gifford Lectures, which reflected on the Apostle’s Creed through the lens of quantum physics.”, Edith Humphrey For the Life of the World by Alexander Schmemann and Mere Christianity by C.S. Its strength lies in its ability to immerse the young theologian in the great theological conversation stretching over the past 2,000 years. Find the best commentary on OT Theology. This massive summary of Christian learning is one of the most important works of theology in the Western church. Also, a bonus: Luther’s Table Talk is a riotously good read; it is a selection of recollections of Luther’s informal comments about numerous topics, theological and otherwise. The first time reader will want to buy an abridged version, such as Summa of the Summa, edited by Peter Kreeft. A Body of Practical Divinity by Thomas Watson (1692), reprinted by Banner of Truth in three parts: Body of Divinity, The Ten Commandments, and The Lord's Prayer. Martin Luther, Large Catechism , 1529: Organized around the Ten Commandments, Apostle’s Creed, and Lord’s Prayer, along with an extended treatment of the sacraments, this work was created to help churches and families faithfully hand down Christian … Unfortunately, he elects not to interact with historical and philosophical theology. Karl Barth’s Evangelical Theology or Church Dogmatics: Any 21st century theologian must reckon with Barth. What a glorious vision of God’s love for humanity in Jesus Christ. J. L. Dagg’s Manual of Theology and Manual of Church Order: Classic Southern Baptist systematic theology. Paul's theology for the first time was fully understood. J. I. Packer’s Knowing God: This book is an incisive and powerful pastoral theology, in which Packer unpacks the doctrine of God in a way that will challenge anybody from a teenager to a Ph.D. For a young theologian wanting a model of how to write theology, this is your book. Philosophae Naturalis Principia Mathematica by Isaac Newton. © 2021 | Pittsburgh Theological Seminary | Bridging the Word and the World | All Rights Reserved | PTS.EDU website. I’ve left out numerous wonderful books that fall in other categories (pastoral theology, biblical studies, etc.). Dr. Bruce Ashford serves as Provost and Professor of Theology & Culture at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. An alternative selection is Henry’s The Uneasy Conscience of Modern Fundamentalism, in which Henry calls for a new kind of robust evangelical scholarship that engages with the larger world, rejects cultural separatism, engages culture in all of its complexity, and works with a type of theological “triage” in which evangelicals can unify and cooperate despite disagreement on more secondary and tertiary issues. Augustine was one of the most prolific writers of the ancient world, and one scholar has quipped that anyone claiming to have read all that he wrote is actually a liar 13! Global Issues: As the globe becomes more and more hyper-connected (and hyper-aware of this connectedness), theologians are well-served to read books that analyze the world situation. Haze Motes, the central character in Wise Blood, sets out to be a … “In some ways Theology of Hope was the first book to awaken my theological quest when I was a theology student in Edinburgh in 1972. It is a model of the early church’s persuasoria, it’s way of drawing upon upon human creativity and love, imagination and humor, eloquence and irony, in order to soften hearts and open minds. student, and I still am today.”, Ron Cole-Turner The Crucified God by Jürgen Moltmann. His compassionate and learned apologetic for Christianity finds its fruition in this book, which is an analysis of the decline of Western culture, and a proclamation of the truth of Christianity. Before you get too zealous, make sure that you have read the Bible at least one time. Irenaeus’ Against the Heresies: In this book and other … “This text was my introduction not only to Barth’s theology, but also to his imaginative theological way of interpreting Scripture. We ultimately associate him with this city because it was there that he wrote his most important theological texts. He’s an Opus Dei priest and fellow book-lover, and he’s put together … Best Catholic Books of All-Time Read More » ?A vivid and informative volume, exploring the sometimes turbulent life, work, and legacy of the twentieth century?s most important Catholic theologians.? A theologian’s library should contain more than a few books written by theologians outside of our “theological family,” so that he can come to the theological roundtable, listening and speaking in an informed and compelling manner. Global Theology: The young theologian would do well to read theology written in other contexts. Here are the top 4 most important-Theology Proper – The Person, identity, nature, attributes, prerogatives and … The book distinguishes between the power of narrative in biblical theology and the power of application in systematic theology, but also emphasizes the importance of their collaboration in ministry. The Dogmatics are rewarding, but not an easy read for the uninitiated. (Note: The Summa is not a hot page-turner; it reads like a prolonged excursion into the earnest world of doctoral dissertations.). J. Rodman Williams’ Renewal Theology: This text is a systematic theology from a charismatic perspective. Wright. “This easy to read autobiographical statement by Skinner outlines his transformation from mid-20th century Harlem gang leader to path breaking urban street evangelist, racial justice activist, and church critic. The final option, Church Dogmatics, is the best option, but is wickedly difficult to read because Barth unfolds his arguments slowly and circuitously, rather than in a straightforward and linear fashion. John Calvin’s Institutes has established itself as “one of the most important theological works ever written,” writes Tony Lane. Contemporary Intellectual History, Worldview, & Culture. An alternative book is the Catechism of the Catholic Church. “One of the influential books for me early in my theological education was Newbigin’s ‘The Gospel in a Pluralist Society.’ I read this book when I began my M.Div. — D. A. Carson, editor, NIV Zondervan Study Bible (Zondervan). THEOLOGY … Although it is two volumes of substantial prose, every young theologian should read it slowly, carefully, and critically. Do not read it in bed. A classic Puritan exposition of Christian theology and ethics, highly edifying and practical. Luther on Vocation. If ever in history there were a non-event, this is it: my top 25 (or so) books for a young theologian to own (and read). There is only one book on the list with God as its author. There are many great books on this list. “I first read this book in a college seminar on religion and culture, and it’s not an exaggeration to say that it profoundly changed the way I understood my faith. : Schaeffer was a towering figure in the 20th century evangelical world. CT asked publishers which theology and biblical studies books they were most excited to publish this year. Irenaeus’ Against the Heresies: In this book and other … Nine Towering Theologians in Church History. Written while Cambridge was closed because of the plague, Newton's Philosophae Naturalis Principia Mathematica details the principles of gravity, mechanics, calculus, and light and color. So, grab a cup of hot apple cider and a piece of pumpkin pie and start reading! Wise Blood by Flannery O’Connor. In the midst of his battle with the Arians, he employed a theological and apologetic method included biblical exegesis, historical arguments, logical deduction, and the use of available philosophical terms and categories. Never miss a post! In Christian theology, justification is God's righteous act of removing the condemnation, guilt, and penalty of sin, by grace, while, at the same time, declaring the ungodly to be righteous, through faith in Christ's atoning sacrifice.. selected by Willie James Jennings October 3, 2010 . Praying with People Grieving Loss from Suicide, White Privilege in a World Where Black Lives Matter, Pastoral Care and Counseling to Help Families Heal. In Review: Scripture, Creed, Theology, by Robert L. Calhoun, edited and with an introduction by George A. Lindbeck. Learn more about the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary faculty members and their areas of research of writing. A. H. Strong’s Systematic Theology: Another classic Baptist theology. One place I often turn is a list composed by Fr. Romans is certainly important though. 4 Pt. It’s critical to know what the “most important” Christian doctrines are, before you can assert that or agree with the statement that Eschatology is not among the most important Christian Doctrines. His sections on the 10 Commandments, the Christian life, and the sacraments have shaped my theology decisively.”. I started out aiming to provide 25 recommendations, but ended up exceeding my own limit. Yves Congar, French Dominican priest who was widely recognized in his lifetime as one of the most important Roman Catholic theologians of the 20th century. Where are the books by non-White middle class men? Richard McBrien’s Catholicism: This massive tome is a guide to one Catholic theologian’s view of the Catholic Church’s origins, teaching, traditions, and developments. Second, McBrien is a liberal/revisionist who is excited by many of the radicalisms of the 20th century (he is farther to the left than Sam Donaldson’s part); conservative Catholics don’t prefer him. “I read it right when it appeared in 1997, and as a budding theologian with a deep interest in Christology it brought home to me that if Jesus is truly whom we confess him to be, God *incarnate*, I would have to take serious that in him God became a first-century Jew – and I would have to understand what that meant. Buy here . One of the most important safeguards against this danger is an understanding of biblical theology: reading the Bible in light of its main message, culminating in Jesus Christ. Systematic Theology, by … Erickson is a top-shelf mind who has put in the hard work to give us a theology that arises from the Scriptures and is conversant with historical and philosophical theology. C. S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity: This book is theological dynamite, one of the most popular introductions to the Christian faith ever written, and was voted by Christianity Today the best book of the 20th century. John Wesley's heart was "strangely warmed" while listening to Luther's commentary on Romans being read. On Religion is his first major publication; it reflects his early thought, is brief, and is relatively difficult to read. A better option is to read Evangelical Theology, which shows his more mature thought, but unfortunately it is not a dogmatics text. Ken C. Johnson and John H. Coe, Wildlife in the Kingdom Come: This little 126-page book is one of the funniest things I’ve ever read; only a person with a petrified diaphragm could fail to laugh out loud. It explains the sacramental nature of the world, and is essential for anyone interested in ministry. First of all, though, if you somehow missed David Bentley Hart’s The Beauty of the Infinite (Eerdmans, 2003), then you should skip all these other books and start with that one – it will almost certainly prove to be the most important theological work of the decade. Enter your e-mail address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by e-mail. Augustine’s City of God: Augustine wrote this powerful theological treatise in response to pagan intellectuals who blamed the fall of Rome on Rome’s adoption of Christianity as its official religioin. The human being as a Catholic bibliophile I ’ m always hunting for the next book... This blog and receive notifications of new posts delivered straight to your Amazon Wish most important theological books david Esterline listening for reader! The Life of the heart by Richard Lischer and Race: a global introduction ) PTS.EDU.! Up and read '' it evangelical world to publish this year Bridging Word! 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