God in Dispute:

God in Dispute: "Conversations" among Great Christian Thinkers

by Roger E. Olson

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A Creative Overview of the History of Christian Thought

God in Dispute imagines a series of dialogues and debates among key figures throughout church history. Roger Olson traces the history of theology from the early church fathers to the present via such conversation partners as Augustine and Pelagius, Calvin and Arminius, Barth and Brunner, and Bultmann and Pannenberg. This approach offers an entertaining, informative, and concise history of Christian thought and gives readers an overview of influential figures and issues throughout the centuries. Each chapter includes:

• a brief summary that introduces the figures under consideration and places them in the history of theology
• the imagined dialogue/debate
• a more detailed assessment of the thinkers and theological issues presented
• a guide for further reading

"Most textbooks that trace the development of historical theology provide us with content, unpacking the positions of theologians and major schools of thought. While Olson's book does that, it also does much more. By bringing generations of Christian thinkers together in dialogue to discuss a number of topics, Olson helps us understand that the Christian tradition is a complex, lively, ongoing argument about what happened in Jesus Christ. And while most textbooks leave the reader an arm's length from the disputes, Olson's approach invites us into the fray as participants in the debates. This is a unique text that makes historical theology come alive."--Dennis Okholm, professor of theology, Azusa Pacific University

"God in Dispute creatively presents significant issues in Christian doctrine through imaginary dialogues between giants in the history of our faith. Professors, students, and laypeople alike will find it a valuable resource."--Vincent Bacote, associate professor of theology, director, Center for Applied Christian Ethics, Wheaton College

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781441210920
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 10/01/2009
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 304
File size: 498 KB

About the Author

Roger E. Olson (PhD, Rice University) is professor of theology at George W. Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University, in Waco, Texas. He is a prolific author whose volumes include Reformed and Always Reforming and The Story of Christian Theology. He is also the coauthor of 20th-Century Theology.

Table of Contents


1. Second-Century Critic Celsus Queries Polycarp, Valentinus, and Montanus about the Christian Sect

2. Second-Century Critic Celsus Interviews Tertullian, Irenaeus, and Clement about Christianity

3. Second- and Third-Century Leaders Irenaeus, Tertullian, and Clement Discuss Beliefs Necessary to Be a True Christian

4. Second- and Third-Century Origen and Tertullian Debate Faith's Relationship to Reason and the Nature of the Eternal Godhead

5. Third-Century Bishop Cyprian of Carthage Is Interviewed about the Church and Salvation

6. Fourth-Century Alexandrians Deacon Athanasius and Presbyter Arius Are Interviewed about the Council of Nicaea

7. The Fourth-Century Cappadocian Fathers Meet to Settle on the Orthodox Doctrine of the Trinity

8. Prominent Fifth-Century Thinkers Cyril, Apollinaris, Nestorius, and Eutyches Discuss the Humanity and Divinity of Jesus Christ

9. Fifth-Century Bishop Augustine of Hippo and British Monk Pelagius Argue about Sin and Salvation

10. Medieval Abbot-Archbishop Anselm of Canterbury and Monk-Philosopher Abelard Debate Faith, Reason, and Atonement

11. Medieval Scholastic Philosopher-Theologian Thomas Aquinas and Tree-Hugger Francis of Assisi Enthuse on How to Know God

12. Sixteenth-Century Bucer Convenes Luther, Karlstadt, Erasmus, Zwingli, Grebel, Calvin, and Servetus on Church Reform

13. Reformer Luther and Roman Catholic Theologian Eck Dispute the Nature of Salvation, Grace, Faith, and Justification

14. Reformers Luther, Hubmaier, Zwingli, and Calvin Debate the Lord's Supper and Baptism

15. Sixteenth-Century Reformer Calvin and Seventeenth-Century Theologian Arminius Contest Divergent Views of Salvation

16. Eighteenth-Century Evangelical Revivalists-Theologians Wesley and Edwards Compare Differing Views of Salvation

17. Eighteenth-Century Irish Deist Toland and English Evangelist Wesley Debate Faith and Reason, God and Miracles

18. Enlightenment Philosophers Locke, Kant, and Hegel Deal with Issues Impinging on Christian Theology

19. Father of Modern Theology Schleiermacher and Philosophers Kant and Hegel Debate the Essence of Religion and Christianity

20. Theologians Liberal Rauschenbusch and Conservative Machen Argue about True Christianity, the Bible, Evolution, and Doctrine

21. Twentieth-Century Barth and Brunner Discuss Theological Method with Nineteenth-Century Liberal Schleiermacher

22. Barth and Brunner Contest Their Differences on Natural Theology and Whether All Will Be Saved

23. Twentieth-Century Theological Giants Barth and Tillich Discuss Crucial Issues, Christ and Culture

24. Twentieth-Century Ethicists Rauschenbusch, Niebuhr, Gutiérrez, Yoder, and Olasky Dispute the Meaning of Justice

25. Twentieth-Century Theologians Bultmann and Pannenberg Debate Faith, Myth, and Jesus's Resurrection

26. Twentieth-Century Theologians Henry and Ramm Dispute about Evangelical Theology, Modernity, and the Enlightenment

27. Twentieth-Century Roman Catholic Theologian Rahner Is Interviewed about His Controversial but Influential Theories

28. Three Liberation Theologians Debate about Humanity's Worst Oppression and How Liberation Should Happen

29. Three Postmodern Theologians Discuss the Meaning of Theology in Postmodern Culture

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