Four Views on Moving Beyond the Bible to Theology guides students and pastors to consider and evaluate the various ways Christians apply biblical texts to contemporary questions. Four different scholars present their preferred interpretive models in point-counterpoint style, and three additional authors follow with their own perspectives on questions of moving from Scripture to theology.
Questions about divine providence have preoccupied Christians for generations: Are people elected to salvation? For whom did Jesus die? This book introduces readers to four prevailing views on divine providence, with particular attention to the question of who Jesus died to save (the extent of the atonement) and if or how God determines who will be saved (predestination).But this book does not merely answer readers’ questions. Four Views on Divine Providence helps readers think theologically about all the issues involved in exploring this doctrine. The point-counterpoint format reveals the assumptions and considerations that drive equally learned and sincere theologians to sharp disagreement. It unearths the genuinely decisive issues beneath an often superficial debate. Volume contributors are Paul Helseth (God causes every creaturely event that occurs); William Lane Craig (through his “middle knowledge,” God controls the course of worldly affairs without predetermining any creatures’ free decisions); Ron Highfield (God controls creatures by liberating their decision-making); and Gregory Boyd (human decisions can be free only if God neither determines nor knows what they will be). Introductory and closing essays by Dennis Jowers give relevant background and guide readers toward their own informed beliefs about divine providence.
Through a discussion of Biblical texts, this book presents four perspectives on the role of works at the final judgment including: Robert N. Wilkin: Works will determine rewards but not salvation: At the Judgment Seat of Christ each believer will be judged by Christ to determine his eternal rewards, but he remains eternally secure even if the judgment reveals he failed to persevere in good works (or in faith). Thomas R. Schreiner: Works will provide evidence that one actually has been saved: At the final judgment works provide the necessary condition, though not the ground for final salvation, in that they provide evidence as to whether one has actually trusted in Jesus Christ. James D. G. Dunn: Works will provide the criterion by which Christ will determine eternal destiny of his people: Since Paul, Jesus, and the New Testament writers hold together "justification by faith and not by works" with "judgment according to works", we should not fall into the trap of playing one off against the other or blend them in a way that diminishes the force of each. Michael P. Barber: Works will merit eternal life: At the final judgment, good works will be rewarded with eternal salvation. However, these good works will be meritorious not apart from Christ but precisely because of the union of the believer with him.
Do the Law and the Gospel belong to two separate dispensations? Has the Gospel replaced the Law? What is the relevance of the Old Testament Law to our lives as Christians? Is there continuity between it and what Christ expects of us in the Gospel? It is no secret that Christians have differed widely on these questions. This book explores five major approaches to this important biblical topic that have developed in Protestant circles. Each of the five authors presents his particular perspective on the issue and responds to the other four. The Counterpoints series provides a forum for comparison and critique of different views on issues important to Christians. Counterpoints books address two categories: Church Life and Bible and Theology. Complete your library with other books in the Counterpoints series.
Recovering the Unity of the Bible helps readers grasp the Bible’s progressive witness on various theological concepts. Walter C. Kaiser challenges the common scholarly posture that sees mostly diversity throughout the biblical canon, pointing instead to the way several Biblical themes substantially support the case for unity, including:- Messianic Promises- The People of God- The Law of God- The Doctrine of Salvation- The Mission of the Old TestamentRecovering the Unity of the Bible exhibits sound techniques for students, pastors, and Bible teachers who seek to make sense of the Bible’s many and different texts.
An Evangelical Engagement with Contemporary Questions
Author: Craig L. Blomberg
Publisher: Brazos Press
Challenges to the reliability of Scripture are perennial and have frequently been addressed. However, some of these challenges are noticeably more common today, and the topic is currently of particular interest among evangelicals. In this volume, highly regarded biblical scholar Craig Blomberg offers an accessible and nuanced argument for the Bible's reliability in response to the extreme views about Scripture and its authority articulated by both sides of the debate. He believes that a careful analysis of the relevant evidence shows we have reason to be more confident in the Bible than ever before. As he traces his own academic and spiritual journey, Blomberg sketches out the case for confidence in the Bible in spite of various challenges to the trustworthiness of Scripture, offering a positive, informed, and defensible approach.
Theology was once 'queen of the sciences', the integrating centre of Christendom's conceptual universe. In our own time the very idea of systematic theology is frequently called into question, derided as an arcane and superstitious pseudo-discipline. Even within the church, it is commonly disregarded in favour of unreflective piety and pragmatism. At the same time, the southward shift in world Christianity's centre of gravity prompts crucial questions about the future form and content of theology. Within this context, Theology and the Future offers a case for the continuing viability of theology, exploring how it might adapt to changing circumstances, and discussing its implications for how we are to imagine and help shape our shared human future. Beginning with the question of God, this book explores what might be meant by 'the future of God', and what its implications are for Christian theology. Chapters follow on the location of theology (in global Christianity, the church and the academy) and on its sources and method. The second half of the book explores a wide variety of dimensions of the human future that theology might address and illuminate. The essays bring together a mix of specialist theologians and interdisciplinary thinkers to support the assertion that there can be no more critical endeavor to the future than understanding God and all things in relationship to him.
Resources for Understanding Controversial Issues in Theology
Author: Stanley N. Gundry
The Counterpoints Theological Studies Collection One: 9-Volume Set is a value for readers (the total retail value of the individual books is over $180), covering diverse topics in the area of theology including volumes on hell, the millennium, the rapture, eternal security, sanctification, and much more. The Counterpoints series provides a forum for comparison and critique of different views on issues important to Christians.
What should we do or not do? This comprehensive text on biblical ethics is completely revised, focusing on how we fulfill the purposes of God for our lives. New content includes discussions of living virtuously, ethical alternatives, bioethical issues, technology, helping the poor, animal rights, sexual ethics, and the media.
During a time of global conflict, the theological question of whether Muslims, Jews, and Christians worship the same God carries political baggage. Is the God of ISIS the same as the God of Israel? Do Sunni Muslims and Protestant Christians pray to the same Creator and Sustainer of the universe? In this Counterpoints volume, edited by Ronnie P. Campbell, Jr., and Christopher Gnanakan, five leading scholars present the main religious perspectives on this question, demonstrating how to think carefully about an issue where opinions differ and confusion abounds. They examine related subtopics such as the difference between God being referentially the same and essentially the same, what "the same" means when referring to God, the significance of the Trinity in this discussion, whether religious inclusivism is inferred by certain understandings of God's sameness, and the appropriateness of interfaith worship. The four main views, along with the scholars presenting them, are: All Worship the Same God: Religious Pluralist View (Wm. Andrew Schwartz and John B. Cobb, Jr.) All Worship the Same God: Referring to the Same God View (Francis J. Beckwith) Jews and Christians Worship the Same God: Shared Revelation View (Gerald R. McDermott) None Worship the Same God: Different Conceptions View (Jerry L. Walls) Additionally, essays by Joseph Cumming and David W. Shenk explore the implications of this question specifically for Christians wanting to minister among and build relationships with Muslims. Cumming stresses that finding common ground is key, while Shenk advocates for a respectful focus on differences. Insightful, gracious, and relevant, Do Christians, Muslims, and Jews Worship the Same God? sheds light on one of the most important theological issues of our day.