Cambridge Companion to Evangelical Theology

Timothy Larson and Daniel Treier, eds. The Cambridge Companion to Evangelical Theology (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007)

Those looking for a fine collection of essays by established and up-and-coming Evangelical theologians from across the globe will not be disappointed. Topics covered include “The Triune God of the Gospel” by Kevin Vanhoozer, “Jesus Christ” by John Webster, and the “Holy Spirit” by Terry L. Cross. I mention these three not only becuase they are very fine essays but additionally they are representative of the high quality of scholarship represented here.

The essays serve not only to “locate” evangelical theology broadly speaking within its dogmatic and historical contexts but they urge us to continue working toward an ever faithful and ever reforming evangelical theology as well. I believe they do so in several ways but not least of which is their high level of scholarship and writing. Let me give two short examples, one from John Webster and the second from Kevin Vanhoozer:

On the topic of Jesus Christ John Webster writes:

The best evangelical theological work emerges from delight in the Christian gospel, for the gospel announces a reality with in in itself luminous, persuasive, and infinitely satisfying. That reality is Jesus Christ as he gives himself to be an object for creaturely knowledge, love, and praise. To think evangelically about this one is to think in his presence, under the instruction of his Word and Spirit, and in the fellowship of the saints (60).

Regarding the triune God, Kevin Vanhoozer writes:

God has acted; God has spoken – this is the good news. Consequently if evangelicals are to conform their thinking to the gospel, they would do well to avoid thinking of Christianity as a philosophy or a system of morality. Christiainity is first and foremost a theo-drama: an account of what God – Father, Son, and Spirit – has said and done in creation and redemption (29).

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