Deeper Reads for 2017! [A Reading List]

January 6, 2017 — Leave a comment

 

Over the course of last year, I set aside a number of books that I wanted to read because I knew that they would make significant contributions to public conversations, but I knew that they would require some time and effort to read carefully and well.

I’m hoping to read a number of these 10 books over the coming year…

By ERB Editor, C. Christopher Smith

(In alphabetical order by author’s last name…)

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The End of Protestantism: Pursuing Unity in a Fragmented Church

Peter Leithart

Hardback: Brazos Press

One of the unforeseen results of the Reformation was the shattering fragmentation of the church. Protestant tribalism was and continues to be a major hindrance to any solution to Christian division and its cultural effects. In this book, influential thinker Peter Leithart critiques American denominationalism in the context of global and historic Christianity, calls for an end to Protestant tribalism, and presents a vision for the future church that transcends post-Reformation divisions.

Leithart offers pastors and churches a practical agenda, backed by theological arguments, for pursuing local unity now. Unity in the church will not be a matter of drawing all churches into a single, existing denomination, says Leithart. Returning to Catholicism or Orthodoxy is not the solution. But it is possible to move toward church unity without giving up our convictions about truth. This critique and defense of Protestantism urges readers to preserve and celebrate the central truths recovered in the Reformation while working to heal the wounds of the body of Christ.

 

Lived Theology: New Perspectives on Method, Style, and Pedagogy

Charles Marsh, et al.

Hardback: Oxford UP

Lived Theology contains the work of an emerging generation of theologians and scholars who pursue research, teaching, and writing as a form of public responsibility motivated by the conviction that theological ideas aspire in their inner logic toward social expression. Written as a two-year collaboration of the Project on Lived Theology at the University of Virginia, this volume offers a series of illustrations and styles that distinguish Lived Theology in the broader conversation with other major approaches to the religious interpretation of embodied life. The book begins with a modest query: How might theological writing, research, and teaching be expanded to engage lived experience with the same care and precision given by scholars to books and articles? Behind this question lies the claim that theological engagements and interpretations of lived experience offer rich and often surprising insights into God’s presence and activity in the world. Answers to, and explorations of, this question form the narrative framework of this groundbreaking volume.

 

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