“I’m not suggesting we need less thinking; my point is that we need more than thinking. And we need to think carefully about the limits of thought (I tried to tease this out in the opening of Imagining, with a hat tip to Proust). That’s not a paradox; that’s intellectual honesty.”
In From Nature to Creation, Wirzba invites the reader to develop “an imagination for the world as created, sustained, and daily loved by God” (3). Few Christians would argue that we ought not to have such an imagination — nearly all Christians confess such a belief. So, the problem is, then, living as if that is true.
The Pastor as Public Theologian, by Kevin Vanhoozer and Owen Strachan was featured in Hearts & Minds Bookstore’s Best Books of 2015 – Part One, and From Nature to Creation by Norman Wirzba was featured in Part Two.
“Guthrie has provided a benchmark commentary on 2 Corinthians. His work demonstrates excellent scholarship that is marked by humility as well as pastoral warmth and wisdom. Throughout this commentary Guthrie’s interpretive decisions are both judicious and persuasive….Should be an automatic inclusion into the library of anyone hoping to mine the wealth of this wonderful epistle.”
Books at a Glance recommended the Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament, edited by G.K. Beale and D.A. Carson.
“It’s not often that you come across a book that genuinely deserves to be on every pastor’s shelf, but almost never can we say of a new book that it really ought to be on every pastor’s desk, ready at hand always for use in every sermon preparation. Beale and Carson’s Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament is without question such a book.”
“Introducing World Religions is clear, stimulating, and bursting with useful information for readers of all backgrounds. It comes highly recommended.”
At Syndicate Theology you can read reflections on Jesus against the Scribal Elite from Dagmar Winter, Tobias Hägerland, Christopher Skinner, and Jason Lamoreaux, along with responses from Chris Keith.
“Chris Keith’s book, Jesus against the Scribal Elite, defends the claim that two factors are intimately related, namely a) Jesus’ status as an illiterate teacher and b) his conflict with scribal authorities. This is to say that conflict arose between Jesus and the scribal elite because of “how various groups within Second Temple Judaism would have perceived Jesus, a scribal-illiterate carpenter, upon his occasionally occupying the position of a scribal-literate authority” (155).”
“This is an excellent book, one that should be read by Bible college and seminary students preparing for ministry. This book would also be good for new pastors to read to learn more about the work they’ve been entrusted with. I highly recommend this book and believe it will help new and seasoned pastors to learn more about the important conversation that is occurring about pastor ministry and how it is a theological office.”
At The Gospel Coalition, Justin Taylor shared Kevin Vanhoozer’s 55 Theses on Pastors as Public Theologians from The Pastor as Public Theologian.
“Why does the church need pastor-theologians? What are pastor-theologians for? Our answer, in brief, is that pastor-theologians are gifts from the risen Christ, helps in building Christ’s church, especially by leading people to confess, comprehend, celebrate, communicate, commend to others, and conform themselves to what is in Christ.”
“Highly recommended to anyone interested in learning more about the history of the New Testament. Not only do the contents of this book offer valuable observations for those seeking to better understand the New Testament and early Christianity, but How We Got the New Testament also addresses penetrating issues at the heart of all Christian faith.”
“Fieldwork in Theology will hopefully influence many to rethink their approach to research, society, and individuals around them.”
“The pastor’s task is always a public one, since it always has to do with helping a congregation ‘to become what they are called to be.’
This is indeed, as Vanhoozer claims, a ‘more excellent way’ of conceiving of and doing public theology.”
Tom Rainer included D.A. Carson’s Exegetical Fallacies, Millard Erickson’s Christian Theology, John Piper’s Let the Nations Be Glad, and Thomas Schreiner’s BECNT volume on Romans in his post What If I Could Only Have 25 Books in My Minister’s Library?
“There are two key places in the Gospel narrative where Jesus describes his death as a substitutionary atonement. The first is Mark 10.45: ‘For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.’ This is a key statement because it is Jesus summing up his whole earthly mission. The second is Mark 14.22-24 where Jesus says: ‘this is my blood of the covenant which is poured out for many.’ Again, this is Jesus’ summary of the purpose of his death the night before he died, and this then became one of the most memorable statements of Jesus.”
“In the past when I was asked to recommend one particular commentary on Revelation, I would usually recommend at least two. This was due to my desire to offer something that touched both the scholarly and pastoral elements of this book. Now, I will simply be encouraging people to get Peter Williamson’s Revelation.”
Finally, Bishop-elect Robert Barron recently spoke at Baker Book House, drawing from Exploring Catholic Theology.
“Keith begins with the sources as they are, and explains the conflicting memories regarding Jesus’ scribal literacy from the fact that a scribal-illiterate member of the manual-labour class presumed to function as an authoritative teacher. Keith argues persuasively that this in itself would have been sufficient to lead to all sorts of questions and conclusions about his scribal-literacy and authority, and to bring him into direct conflict with the scribal elite.”
“An important scholarly book for clarifying Barth’s theology. No doubt the revisionists named by Hunsinger will make a response which will further the debate.”
“I praise Cook and Holmstedt for producing a methodologically rigorous grammar that does many unique things to make Hebrew come alive for students. Surely, BBH will help the whole field take a step forward in more effectively teaching Hebrew to the next generation.”
Also at Books at a Glance, a helpful summary of G. K. Beale’s Handbook on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament.
“An excellent introduction to some of the scholarly debate surrounding the atonement and provides a brief and accessible exegetical defense of substitutionary atonement through two Pauline texts. It’s a great book for laity with academic interest in soteriology as well as beginning Bible college or seminary students.”
“The label ‘game changer’ should not be thrown around hastily, however I believe A New Heaven and a New Earth has the potential to be this very thing for many Christians today.”