A rich articulation of John Wesley's theology that is appreciative of the old and mindful of the new, faithful to the past and attentive to the present. This work carefully displays John Wesley's eighteenth century theology in its own distinct historical and social location, but then transitions to the twenty-first century through the introduction of contemporary issues. So conceived, the book is both historical and constructive demonstrating that the theology of Wesley represents a vibrant tradition. Cognizant of Wesley's own preferred vocabulary, Collins introduces Wesley's theological method beginning with a discussion of the doctrine of God. "In this insightful exposition the leitmotif of holy love arises out of Wesley's reflection on the nature of the divine being as well as other major doctrines." (Douglas Meeks)
In a single, convenient volume, readers can now look up John Wesley's own statements of his theological beliefs. Reprinted from the 1954 work, A Compend of Wesley's Theology, the book includes Wesley's most significant statements on the essential questions of Christian doctrine, culled from over thirty of his works.
John Wesley: A Theological Journey has been nominated for a Wesleyan Theological Society Book Award. Abingdon Press would like to congratulate Kenneth Collins on this honor. John Wesley remains a seminal figure, not only for "the people called Methodist, " but also within the larger Protestant tradition. Understanding his theology is a requirement for understanding the development of the Western Christian tradition in the modern period. In recent years much work has been done to grasp the intricacies of Wesley's theology. However, most of this work has been thematic in organization, studying Wesley's thought according to a topical or systematic outline. The weakness of this approach, argues Kenneth J. Collins, is that it fails to demonstrate the evolution and changes of Wesley's theology. What is called for is a historical presentation--one that examines the development of Wesley's theology across the span of his long and eventful theological career. Collins thus provides a chronological presentation of the development of Wesley's theology. Drawing on an extensive examination of the primary sources, and demonstrating an intimate knowledge of the different contexts and social locations in which Wesley's theology took place, John Wesley: A Theological Journey will be necessary reading for anyone wishing to understand the broad scope of the Methodist leader's theological development and contribution.
This is a general, comprehensive introduction to John Wesley's life and work, and to his theological and ecclesiastical legacy. Written from various disciplinary perspectives, this volume will be an invaluable aid to scholars and students, including those encountering the work and thought of Wesley for the first time.
John Wesley’s Teachings is the first systematic exposition of John Wesley's theology that is also faithful to Wesley's own writings. Wesley was a prolific writer and commentator on Scripture—his collected works fill eighteen volumes—and yet it is commonly held that he was not systematic or consistent in his theology and teachings. On the contrary, Thomas C. Oden demonstrates that Wesley displayed a remarkable degree of internal consistency over sixty years of preaching and ministry. This series of 4 volumes is a text-by-text guide to John Wesley’s teaching. It introduces Wesley’s thought on the basic tenets of Christian teaching: God, providence, and man (volume 1), Christ and salvation (volume 2), the practice of pastoral care (volume 3), and issues of ethics and society (volume 4). In everyday modern English, Oden clarifies Wesley’s explicit intent and communicates his meaning clearly to a contemporary audience. Both lay and professional readers will find this series useful for devotional reading, moral reflection, sermon preparation, and for referencing Wesley’s opinions on a broad range of pressing issues of contemporary society.
In addition to being a prolific preacher and teacher, John Wesley wrote and published many pamphlets for the edification of Christian disciples, which circuit riders distributed to the people. 21st century Christians also need such informative and formational pamphlets. A Year with John Wesley helps people begin to think about the practices of discipleship and the insights that are the Methodist way. The pamphlet contains twelve mini-essays on theme's in John Wesley's thought and practice, such as Wesley's call to personal and social holiness or Wesley on the means of grace. Each mini-essay is followed by a set of practical applications concerning the Wesleyan practice.
"Wesley's Wars" discusses the theological wars that John Wesley waged on behalf of "true religion," a religion of the heart. They were fought to protect the people in his society who trusted him with their spiritual health, and he took that seriously. He waged war on incorrect ideas of original sin, predestination, the church, and Christian perfection.
One of the most surprising developments in contemporary Methodist theology is the degree to which leading Methodist and Wesleyan systematic theologians are reengaging John Wesley, finding his works instructive, provocative, and stimulating for their own theological reflection. Such a broad and purposeful dialogue with Wesley by theologians of the Wesleyan heritage is unprecedented in this century, and much rarer in the previous century than is popularly believed. This volume presents a set of original essays that represent and embody this new engagement allowing the reader to see how several prominent theologians are self-consciously reexamining and reappropriating their theological tradition.
Stephen Long asserts that the theology of the Wesleyan tradition is best understood not as philosophical & applied ethics, but as moral theology stemming from the virtue tradition, particularly the work of Thomas Aquinas.
Taking its title from one of John Wesley's most important sermons, The Scripture Way of Salvation explores the soteriological content of Wesley's entire literary corpus (sermons, letters, theological treatises, journals, and the notes on the Old and New Testaments). Fundamentally a doctrinal study, it is historically sensitive to the subtle shifts and nuances of Wesley's continuing reflections about the processes of salvation and the nature of Christian life. Collins provides a clear discussion of Wesley's emerging views about the development and maturation of Christian life, and in so doing highlights the essential structure that undergirds and provides the framework for Wesley's way of thinking about the processes of salvation.
Of special focus in this reflective overview of Wesley's theological convictions is highlighting the practical-theological dynamics of Wesley's work and suggesting possible implications for contemporary attempts to recover theology as a practical discipline. Another distinctive focus of this work is a systematic consideration of the integration of theological emphases traditionally divergent in Eastern and Western Christianity. The author also closely examines the consistency of Wesley's thought throughout his career.
A Real Christian: The Life of John Wesley fills a void in available books in Wesleyan studies by providing a brief, solid biography that focuses on Wesley himself. While exploring Wesley's ancestry, birth, death, and every major biographical and theological event between, Collins also explores the theme of John Wesley's spiritual growth and maturation. Wesley came to the conclusion that real Christians are those whose inward (and outward) lives have been transformed by the bountiful sanctifying grace of God -- what he termed real Christianity--and this he strove to obtain for himself. Real Christianity, as Wesley understood it, embraces both works of piety and mercy, the person and the social.
This book approaches the future of John Wesley's theology in terms of a preferred future by looking back to the Apostle Paul. In a comparison of Wesley's theology with the writings of St. Paul, Tex Sample maintains that Wesleyans tend to read Paul through Wesley, but that in the future we need to read Wesley through Paul. Key issues between Wesley and Paul are considered in this book: justification by faith, sanctification, the faith in/of Christ, the powers, the individual/social concept in Wesley that is absent in Paul, and, finally, the issue of a justice of the common good. The conclusion develops the implications of this study for the future of the church and its witness.
John Wesley: Holiness of Heart and Life is a six-week study on John Wesley, the major themes of his theology, the spread of Wesleyanism to North America, and renewal in the Wesleyan tradition. Chapters include reflection questions. The Study Guide offers step-by-step plans for each session.
A major figure in eighteenth-century Christianity, John Wesley sought to combine the essential elements of the Catholic and Evangelical traditions and to restore to the laity a vital role in church life. He began one of the most dynamic movements in the history of modern Protestantism, a movement which eventually produced the Methodist churches. This volume offers a representative selection of theological writings by Wesley and includes historically oriented introductions and footnotes which indicate Wesley's Anglican, patristic, and biblical sources.