Exploring Christian Theology: Revelation, Scripture, and the Triune God

Exploring Christian Theology: Revelation, Scripture, and the Triune God


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The Foundations of Theology in Everyday Language

Dallas Seminary professors Nathan Holsteen and Michael Svigel are passionate about the key doctrines of Christianity. They want readers to know why they're important and why they matter. This volume includes two parts:
· How Firm a Foundation: Revelation, Scripture, and Truth
· God in Three Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
The authors explore these important topics in a concise and highly readable style that makes sense—whether you're a student of the Bible, a pastor, or someone who simply wants to know God better.

For each topic you'll find
· An introduction, overview, and review of the key points
· Several applicable Bible texts, including verses to memorize
· A quick-paced history of the doctrine
· Distortions to be aware of and avoid
· Reading lists for further study
· A glossary of theological terms

"Exploring Christian Theology is a wonderful doctrinal primer that teaches theology in a way that will engage you and cause you to reflect. . . . A great way to get acquainted with key biblical theological themes."
—Darrell Bock, Senior Research Professor, Dallas Theological Seminary

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780764211300
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/18/2014
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 692,270
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.60(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Nathan D. Holsteen, ThM, PhD, is Associate Professor of Theological Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary, where he teaches all areas of systematic theology. Trained as an engineer, he is awed by systems of theology that exhibit internal coherence.

Michael J. Svigel, ThM, PhD, is the Department Chair and an Associate Professor of Theological Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary. He has written numerous Bible study guides, articles, and papers, and is the author of RetroChristianity. Learn more at www.retrochristianity.com.

Table of Contents

Introduction 9

Acknowledgments 11

The Christian Story in Four Acts 13

Act I Creation

Act II Fall

Act III Redemption

Act IV Restoration You Are Here

Part 1 "How Firm a Foundation: Revelation, Scripture, and Truth" Douglas K. Blount Nathan D. Holsteen Glenn R. Kreider Michael J. Svigel 23

High-Altitude Survey 25

Delving Into the Deep Things of God God Is Knowable … and Has Made Himself Known

The Inspired Word of God Faith-Full Theological Thinking

Passages to Master 31

1 God Speaks Through Creation

Psalm 19.1-6

2 Humans Rebel Against God's Revelation

Romans 1-3

3 God Spoke Through His Prophets … and Then Through His Son

Hebrews 1:1-2

4 All Scripture Is Inspired by God

2 Timothy 3:14-4:4

5 Prophets Moved by the Spirit

2 Peter 1:19-21

6 Words Taught by the Spirit 1

Corinthians 2:10-13

7 God's Word Is True

John 17:17

8 Birth of the Old Testament Canon

Deuteronomy 31:24-26

9 Rise of the New Testament Canon

2 Peter 3:15-16

10 Keeping the [Good] Traditions

2 Thessalonians 2:15

Holy Scripture in Retrospect 57

The Patristic Period (100-500)

The Medieval Period (500-1500)

The Protestant Period (1500-1700)

The Modern Period (1700-Present)

Facts to Never Forget 72

1 God is knowable and has made himself known.

2 God reveals himself through various means.

3 Scripture is true in all it affirms.

4 Jesus Christ is the center and goal of Scripture.

5 The goal of theology is transfor(not just infor) mation.

Dangers to Avoid 78

1 Unnecessary Elective Surgery

2 "Watered-Down Wine

3 Hearing Without Hearing

4 Cold, Dead Orthodoxy

5 Arrogant Reading

6 Doctrine-less Discipleship

7 Christian Pole-Sitting

Principles to Put Into Practice 86

1 Heed Scripture as from the mouth of God.

2 Be taught to be stable.

3 Be a doer, not merely a hearer.

4 Maintain a balanced diet of truth sources.

5 Seek understanding in the context of faith.

6 Nurture the character of a virtuous theologian.

Voices From the Past and Present 95

The Patristic Period (100-500)

The Medieval Period (500-1500)

The Protestant Period (1500-1700)

The Modern Period (1700-Present)

Shelf Space: Recommendations for Tour Library 111

Classic Works From the History of Theology

Modern Systematic Theologies

Books on God's Self-Revelation

Books on the Inspiration and Authority of Scripture

Books on the Canonicity of the Bible

Books on How to Read and Think Theologically

Notes 118

Part 2 "God in Three Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit" J. Scott Horrell Nathan D. Holsteen Michael J. Svigel 125

High-Altitude Survey 127

Answers to the Ultimate Questions

Ladies and Gentlemen, Meet Your Maker

Where Do We Go From Here?

Passages to Master 133

1 In the Beginning … God

Genesis 1:1-3

2 "Let Us Make Man in Our Own Image"

Genesis 1:26-27

3 What's Your Name?

Exodus 3:13-15

4 What's in a Name?

Exodus 20:7

5 God the One and Only

Deuteronomy 6:4

6 Classifying the Big Attributes of God

Psalm 139

7 God Is Holy; We're to Be Holy Too

Isaiah 6:1-8

8 God Is Love

1 John 4:7-16

9 God the Father

Ephesians 1:3-14

10 God in the Flesh

John 1:1-18

11 The Son Before (and Above) Creation

Colossians 1:15-19

12 The Humility of the Incarnate Son

Philippians 2.6-11

13 The Holy Spirit Is God

John 14-17

14 In the Name of the Father, Son, and Spirit

Matthew 28:19

The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in Retrospect 168

The Patristic Period (100-500)

The Medieval Period (500-1500)

The Protestant Period (1500-1700)

The Modern Period (1700-Present)

Facts to Never Forget 186

1 Everyone has ideas about "God."

2 The Christian God is both infinite and personal.

3 Evidence and arguments point to God's existence.

4 Jesus Christ is God incarnate, the absolute revelation of God.

5 Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man in one person.

6 As God-Man, Jesus is our complete Savior.

7 The Spirit is fully, distinctly, and personally God.

8 The Holy Trinity is truth we can believe and trust.

Dangers to Avoid 197

1 Deceptive God-Talk

2 Kidnapped and Tortured Verses

3 Single-Attribute Exaggeration

4 The Incredible Shrinking god

5 Holy Triplets (Tritheism)

6 One Person, Three Names (Modalism)

7 Little God, Junior, and His Pet Birdy (Subordinationism)

8 Pretzelizing, Egging, and Watering Down the Divine

9 Driving Christology Into a Ditch

10 God or Man, but Not the God-Man

Principles to Put Into Practice 212

1 Knowing God encourages us to learn more of God.

2 In light of the Trinity, be all you were meant to be.

3 Learn to parent from the perfect Father.

4 Follow Jesus, our Lord and Brother.

5 Trust the Holy Spirit.

6 Be kind but firm with deceivers and the deceived.

7 Glorify the triune God.

Voices From the Past and Present 221

The Patristic Period (100-500)

The Medieval Period (500-1500)

The Protestant Period (1500-1700)

The Modern Period (1700-Present)

Shelf Space: Recommendations for Your Library 242

Classic Works on the Trinity General Books on God and the Trinity

Books on the Existence of God

Books on God's Names and Attributes

Books on God as Trinity

Books on God the Son

Books on the Holy Spirit

Trinity, Humanity, Society, and Culture

Notes 248

Glossary of Terms for Revelation, Scripture, and the Triune God 255

Scripture Index 269

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Exploring Christian Theology: Revelation, Scripture, and the Triune God 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Pastor_JimM More than 1 year ago
When I first received this book I was a little concerned that it was going to be some really dry, purely intellectual reading, but I was wrong. This book is really good on sharing the importance of theology. This volume isn't too long with 272 pages, and covers two subjects (nice length); the way in which it's designed is really like having two books in one. The first subject is Scripture and all that entails including the inspiration of the Scriptures. This subject really has to be covered first as it is foundational.  If you don't come to the conclusion that the Bible is 100% inspired by God (Holy Spirit), then you will have no basis upon which to build any of your beliefs. Along those lines let me quote from page 109 of this book, "The proper conception of inspiration holds that the Holy Spirit acted on the writers of the Bible in an organic way, in harmony with the laws of their own inner being, using them just as they were, with their character and temperament, their gifts and talents, their education and culture, their vocabulary and style. The Holy Spirit illumined their minds, aided their memory, prompted them to write, repressed the influence of sin on their writings, and guided them in the expression of their thoughts even to the choice of their words." (Quote by Louis Berkhof).   The first section also includes 10 memory Scriptures as they relate directly to the subject of the inspiration of the Scriptures. The second subject or book in this volume is on the Triune God, the Trinity. The Trinity is one of those doctrines that is foundational to Christians worldwide, and it will be hard to understand unless you accept as fact that God's Word (BIBLE), as stated in section one, is truly 100% the inspired Word of God.  This section will cover and explain how God exists as three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and each person is fully God, yet there is one God (not three as erroneously taught by some). While this may be one of the hardest doctrines to wrap our finite minds around, it is taught throughout the Bible (Old and New Testaments) as you will see in this section. I feel this book did a good job of explaining the Trinity and showing many passages that teach this foundational truth of Christianity.   This second section includes 14 memory Scriptures, again, related to the subject. There are also other handy tools such as a glossary of terms. This is helpful as many of the terms in this book are words you've never heard from a modern day pulpit. There is also a section at the end of each part of the book called "shelf space," which refers you to other books on the same subject for further study (and in most cases more in-depth), which I found helpful. The book suggestions are broken down into three categories: beginner, intermediate, and advanced.  By their own rating system, I would say they would likely consider this book intermediate. So, if you did find this book a little too detailed, look at their book suggestions and look for a book rated beginner; if this book was too simplistic for you, then look at their book suggestions and pick a book that is rated advanced. I would give this book four and a half stars. it's a good book on theology, not too terribly long and pretty easy to read. I received this book free from the publisher, Bethany House. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.