[Common Places] Reading Notes: Faith Alone

Erik Herrmann on 1 month ago. Tagged under ,.

Open book on wooden deck

This year we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the beginnings of the Protestant Reformation, looking back to Martin Luther’s 95 Theses and the theological debates kick-started by their posting. The Reformation continues to be lauded, cajoled, and debated in circles of all sorts today. At Common Places we will begin the year by focusing on some of the central principles and most relevant texts that shaped early Reformation theology and that have continued that conversation in the centuries that followed. Each month we will begin with a post related to an ongoing book project from Zondervan Academic that addresses the five solas of Reformation theology. We will then conclude each month with an annotated reading…

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[Common Places] The Five Solas: Scripture Alone

Matthew Barrett on 2 months ago. Tagged under ,,,.

This year we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the beginnings of the Protestant Reformation, looking back to Martin Luther’s 95 Theses and the theological debates kick-started by their posting. The Reformation continues to be lauded, cajoled, and debated in circles of all sorts today. At Common Places we will begin the year by focusing on some of the central principles and most relevant texts that shaped early Reformation theology and that have continued that conversation in the centuries that followed. Each month we will begin with a post related to an ongoing book project from Zondervan Academic that addresses the five solas of Reformation theology. We will then conclude each month with an annotated reading guide on classic and contemporary works that address that particular principle.

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[Common Places] Reading Notes: Christ Alone

Piotr Malysz on 3 months ago. Tagged under ,,,.

This year we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the beginnings of the Protestant Reformation, looking back to Martin Luther’s 95 Theses and the theological debates kick-started by their posting. The Reformation continues to be lauded, cajoled, and debated in circles of all sorts today. At Common Places we will begin the year by focusing on some of the central principles and most relevant texts that shaped early Reformation theology and that have continued that conversation in the centuries that followed. Each month we will begin with a post related to an ongoing book project from Zondervan Academic that addresses the five solas of Reformation theology. We will then conclude each month with an annotated reading guide on classic and contemporary works that address that particular principle.

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[Common Places] The Five Solas: Christ Alone

Stephen Wellum on 3 months ago. Tagged under ,,,.

This year we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the beginnings of the Protestant Reformation, looking back to Martin Luther’s 95 Theses and the theological debates kick-started by their posting. The Reformation continues to be lauded, cajoled, and debated in circles of all sorts today. At Common Places we will begin the year by focusing on some of the central principles and most relevant texts that shaped early Reformation theology and that have continued that conversation in the centuries that followed. Each month we will begin with a post related to an ongoing book project from Zondervan Academic that addresses the five solas of Reformation theology. We will then conclude each month with an annotated reading guide on classic and contemporary works that address that particular principle.

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[Common Places] Pro-Nicene Theology: Theologia and Oikonomia

Lewis Ayres on 4 months ago. Tagged under ,,.

Our current series, Pro-Nicene Theology, offers doctrinal and exegetical entries to the key tenets of basic Trinitarian orthodoxy as developed in the early centuries of the church. For introduction to the series, see this first post.

origen_big

The individual terms theologia and oikonomia have long histories of their own in classical Greek, but the first time we find these two terms paired in Christian writing is in the work of the famous theologian and exegete Origen of Alexandria (died c. 254). He speaks in the 18th of his Homilies on Jeremiah of God speaking “theologically about himself, and [not about] his plan (oikonomia) for human matters” (18.6.3). Whereas theologia concerns the nature of God, God’s oikonomia refers to God’s concern for and ordering…

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[Common Places] Pro-Nicene Theology: Eternal Generation Exegetically Considered

Fred Sanders on 5 months ago. Tagged under ,,.

Our current series, Pro-Nicene Theology, offers doctrinal and exegetical entries to the key tenets of basic Trinitarian orthodoxy as developed in the early centuries of the church. For introduction to the series, see this first post.

Stammheim Nativity moses dialogue.jpg

[Image (attached): Detail from the Stammheim Missal (Germany, 1170s). God summons Moses: “Come, I send you.” Moses replies, “Send who you will send” (Ex. 3:10, 4:13).

When in the course of theological events Christians have wanted to make their confession of the identity of Jesus Christ clear and definite, they have usually taken recourse to the doctrine of his eternal generation.

The relation…

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[Common Places] Pro-Nicene Theology: Entryways and Ineffability (Part 1)

Michael Allen on 8 months ago. Tagged under ,,,.

CPThe doctrine of the Trinity serves as the fundamental lodestar of all Christian belief, the shining center of all Christian truth and the focal point of every instance of our trust and hope. God is. More particularly, God—the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit—is, and in, through, and to this one are all things. What light is shed upon life and being, then, flows forth from this fiery being. It must be admitted, however, that the Trinity has overwhelmed due to the power of its beam. Its very brilliance is the source of its difficulty. Theologians from Anselm to Sonderegger have reminded us that the divine mystery is not owing to a lack of revelation but a preponderance of it. This the hymn-writer attested so…

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[Common Places]: Ecce Homo: A Christ-Shaped Vision of Ourselves

Marc Cortez on 10 months ago. Tagged under ,,.

With this post we begin a new series attending to Marc Cortez’s  Christological Anthropology in Historical Perspective: Ancient and Contemporary Approaches to Theological Anthropology (Zondervan Academic). While other posts will follow in short order this month and next, we begin with a word of orientation from the author.

9780310516415Looking down on this scarred and bleeding body, head adorned with thorns and body draped in purple, Pilate exclaimed, “Behold, the man” (ecce homo). But what did he see? Was it only a miserable example of a human life crushed by a fallen and jealous world? Or was there something more, something only vaguely glimpsed and inadequately understood?

At one level, Pilate’s statement was almost certainly intended to point out Jesus’ miserable condition, either…

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[Common Places] In Memoriam John Webster

Michael Allen on 11 months ago. Tagged under ,.

As we mourn the death of a leading figure in our discipline and dear friend to many, we invite those impacted by the life and writings of John Webster to add their comments below.

The Reverend Professor John Bainbridge Webster (1955-2016) died on May 25, 2016. While family and friends, neighbors and fellow congregants will each observe his passing in ways which befit his private manner, it is appropriate to mark his departure from this life in the wider sphere of theological scholarship, for he was both a leading light and a generous friend and teacher to many around the globe. He was educated at Cambridge University and taught at Durham University, Wycliffe College (Toronto), Oxford University, the University of Aberdeen, and, until his death, the University of St. Andrews. He held the prestigious Lady Margaret Chair of Divinity at…

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[Common Places] A Conversation about Cultural Liturgies: An Interview with James K. A. Smith

Michael Allen and Scott Swain, editors of Common Places on 11 months ago. Tagged under ,,.

As a conclusion to our series of engagements with James K. A. Smith’s Cultural Liturgies project, Michael Allen and Scott Swain interviewed him regarding the series thus far and concerning its concluding volume. In so doing Smith addresses anthropological, liturgical, formational, and pedagogical matters.

Were there any autobiographical factors (which you’d be willing to share) that led you to write Desiring the Kingdom and Imagining the Kingdom?

James K. A. Smith: A big impetus was an invitation and prodding from my colleague, John Witvliet, who directs the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship. Around here, at Calvin College and in the Kuyperian tradition more broadly, we’ve been talking about “worldview” for a hundred years. John’s challenge to me was to reconnect worldview to worship, and thereby reconnect the college—and…

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[Common Places]: Reading Notes: Christocentrism

Keith Johnson on 1 year ago. Tagged under ,.

Open book on wooden deck

A theology is christocentric when its method, structure, arguments, and goals are oriented around the theologian’s account of the person and work of Jesus Christ. A christocentric theologian does more than simply talk a lot about Jesus. Rather, he or she proceeds with the hope that every theological claim will live and move and have its being in relation to Christ and his saving work. Since accounts of the person and work of Christ vary across the centuries and traditions, no single type of christocentric theology exists. This brief bibliography points to a few helpful christocentric texts while also accounting for at least some of that diversity.

Saint Athanasius, On the Incarnation –…

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[Common Places] Reading Notes: Heavenly-Mindedness

Michael Allen on 1 year ago. Tagged under ,,.

Open book on wooden deck

One feature that will appear regularly this year will be a monthly series entitled Reading Notes. In these posts, editors and contributors will lead readers to significant literature related thematically to our other ongoing series. This month Michael Allen introduces classical and contemporary literature related to heavenly-mindedness and formation as a fitting complement to our ongoing engagement of James K. A. Smith’s Cultural Liturgies project (see here).

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Admittedly heaven isn’t a particularly big place in contemporary culture. But heaven features widely in the Scriptures of Israel and the early church, and heavenly-mindedness has marked Christian theology through the centuries. Theologians ranging from the patristic to the Puritan eras have sought…

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