No Place for Truth: Or Whatever Happened to Evangelical Theology?

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How are we to explain the fragmentation of evangelical faith today and the current turmoil in the churches? According to David Wells, the answer lies in seeing how modernity is reshaping the whole of Western culture, including that part of it which is religious. This book provides a compelling critique of the modern world and the state of evangelical theology. Wells's sweeping analysis explores the collapse of theology in the church, the academy, and modern culture. The new environment in which we live, with its ...
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Overview

How are we to explain the fragmentation of evangelical faith today and the current turmoil in the churches? According to David Wells, the answer lies in seeing how modernity is reshaping the whole of Western culture, including that part of it which is religious. This book provides a compelling critique of the modern world and the state of evangelical theology. Wells's sweeping analysis explores the collapse of theology in the church, the academy, and modern culture. The new environment in which we live, with its huge cities, triumphant capitalism, invasive technology, and incessant amusements, is homogenizing daily experience, bringing about a world cliche culture. While the modern world has produced astonishing abundance, it has also taken a dreadful toll on the human spirit, emptying it of meaning, depth, and morality. Seeking respite from the acids of modernity, people today have increasingly turned to religions and therapies centered on the self. And, whether consciously or not, evangelicals have taken the same path, refashioning their faith into a religion of the self. Because the modern churchgoer is so often a consumer, pastors are redefining their roles in terms of their own marketability. Evangelicals, argues Wells, have largely lost the truth that God also stands outside all human experience, that he still summons sinners to repentance and belief regardless of their self-image, and that he calls his church to stand fast in his truth against the blandishments of the modern world. Written expressly to encourage renewal in evangelical theology, No Place for Truth explores the interface between Christian faith and the modern world in entirely new ways and with uncommon rigor. It raises profound questions about the future of conservative Protestant faith. Here is provocative reading for scholars, ministers, Christian leaders, seminary students, and all theologically concerned people.
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Editorial Reviews

Gary Young
An excellent addition to a theologian's library, this thorough study of the development of current evangelical expression will also inform the philosopher, the social observer, the cultural anthropologist, and even the interested general reader. Professor Wells does not conceal his conservatism, because it is for him an invaluable characteristic of authentic Christianity. Wells demonstrates, with regret, the contemporary preoccupation with an anthropomorphism that is eroding theocentric Christianity. He calls for a reformed evangelicalism, which will, once again, proclaim the "character, acts, will and purpose of God" without dilution. The range of citations demonstrates not only an erudite project but a Christian manifest based on a synthesis of present intellectual spirituality. The gatherings from several great minds and hearts deliver this book from parochialism and stereotype. Though profound, the book is easily approachable. Ecumenical thinkers will rank this presentation as the evangelical contribution to current interfaith dialogue.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802837134
  • Publisher: Eerdmans, William B. Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 4/1/1993
  • Pages: 336

Table of Contents

  1. Preface
    Introduction

    PROLOGUE

  2. A Delicious Paradise Lost
  3. The Delicious Paradise
    A Puritan Town Revisited
    A Small Town in a Big World
    Reaching Out to America
  4. World Cliche Culture
  5. Uneasy Rests the Spirit
    The New Civilization

    THE CIRCUMSTANCE OF FAITH

  6. Things Fall Apart
  7. Theology Disappears
    A Tale of Two Worlds
  8. Self-Piety
  9. Modern Individuality
    The Revised (Evangelical) Version
  10. The Rise of Everyperson
  11. Who is Everyperson?
    The Middling Standard
    Les Liaisons Dangereuses
    Postcards from the Edge
    Innocent Radicals
    There They Go and I Am Their Leader
  12. The New Disablers
  13. The New Mandarins
    The New Knowledge
    Toward a New Order of Sacred Fools
  14. The Habits of God
  15. The Pagan Mind
    The Biblical Mind
    The Modern Mind
  16. The Reform of Evangelicalism
  17. Believers and Unbelievers
    The Use of God
    The Recovery of God

    Selected Bibliography
    Index

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