Friday, July 20, 2007

Reforming Reformed Theology

Andrew McGowan
One of the books that I have just purchased is Always Reforming: Explorations in Systematic Theology, edited by A.T.B. McGowan, IVP Apollos, 2006. This multi-author work seeks to chart the way ahead for Reformed systematics. Scholars such as Gerald Bray, Richard Gaffin and Kevin Vanhoozer discuss key biblical doctrines in the light of contemporary developments and give attention to matters of theological methodolody. I hope to post a review when I've finished reading it, but these introductory words by the editor reveal something of the book's agenda,
"Although the Reformation took place in the sixteenth century, it is important to understand that this was the beginning of something and not the end. The Reformed churches affirmed the need to be semper reformanda (always reforming). Unfortunately, this commitment to continuing reformation has not been faithfully and consistently maintained over the centuries. At the one end of the theological spectrum, some have invoked semper reformanda in order to justify abandoning the core of Reformation theology and departing from received orthodoxy. At the other end of the spectrum, some have forgotten about semper reformanda in their progress toward a rigid confessionalism, giving the impression that the final codification of truth has already taken place and that there is no need for further reformation. Between these two extremes, there is a vital task to be performed by the church in every generation namely to subject its beliefs and practices to renewed scrutiny of Holy Scripture. In doing so, the church must restate the truth of Scripture in ways that faithfully communicate the gospel, advance the mission of the church and address the issues that men, women and children are facing day by day as they seek to follow Christ and witness to him." (p. 13)
That got me interested!

2 comments:

David Shedden said...

Look forward to your review. I blogged about this book here: http://itothehills.blogspot.com/2006/08/reforming-reformed.html

Exiled Preacher said...

Hi David,

I checked out your post. Interesting. It may be a few weeks at least before I post a review because I'm off on holiday soon. But I'll hopefully get round to it eventually.