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Ten Theology Books to Watch For – October 2023

Here are some excellent new theology books * that will be released in October 2023

* broadly interpreted, including ethics, church history, biblical studies, and other areas that intersect with theology

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Theology Books October 2023

Women Who Do: Female Disciples in the Gospels

Holly J. Carey


Meet the women who followed Jesus even when the Twelve failed.

To be a disciple is to follow Jesus. And that requires action. But in the gospels, the disciples often falter. The Twelve even abandon Jesus at his crucifixion in many of the narratives. Yet it is female disciples who remain faithful to Jesus to the end. What do we make of this?

In Women Who Do, Holly J. Carey examines what it means to be a disciple—and contends that it’s the women who best embody discipleship in the gospels. Carey describes the expectations and social roles for women in first-century Greco-Roman and Jewish contexts. Then she offers a close reading of each of the four gospels, as well as Acts of the Apostles. What emerges is a cohesive narrative-critical case that the Twelve are not an equivalent group to the disciples. In fact, the Twelve are set as foils against the faithful, active, and often nameless disciples who populate the narratives—many of whom are women.

Women Who Do is essential reading for students and scholars seeking a fuller understanding of women’s roles in Jesus’s ministry. Carey’s argument not only clarifies the narrative of the gospels but also raises questions about how the church conceives of women’s leadership today.

Bargain Theology Books
Theology Books October 2023

Scripture, the Genesis of Doctrine: Doctrine and Scripture in Early Christianity, vol 1. 

Frances Young


How did we get from Scripture to creed?

Historical criticism has revealed a gap between Scripture and the mainstream doctrines that define Christianity today. Not the least of these are the Trinity and two natures of Christ—widely accepted since the fifth century, but unfounded in historical readings of Scripture. How did these dogmas become so integral to the faith in the first place?

Frances M. Young tackles this monumental question in a culmination of decades of biblical and patristic research. The first of two volumes exploring the emergence of doctrine in the early church, Scripture, the Genesis of Doctrine reframes the relationship between Scripture and doctrine according to the intellectual context of the first few centuries CE. Young situates the early Christians’ biblical hermeneutic within the context of Greco-Roman learning without espousing historical relativism. Ultimately, Young argues that the scriptural canon and the Rule of Faith emerged concurrently in the early Church, and both were received as apostolic. The perceived gap between the two may in fact be the product of our modern assumptions rather than an ancient reality.

Nuanced and ecumenical, Scripture, the Genesis of Doctrine explores early Christians’ biblical hermeneutic, with an eye toward how we interpret the bible today. Young’s magisterial study holds widespread implications for not only patristics but also exegesis and systematic theology.

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