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The Remaking of Evangelical Theology

by Gary J. Dorrien

Buy the book: Gary J. Dorrien. The Remaking of Evangelical Theology

Release Date: October, 1998

Edition: Paperback


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Buy the book: Gary J. Dorrien. The Remaking of Evangelical Theology

Insightful historical and theological overview

I could not recommend a more accessible, readable, and insightful survey of 20th century (American) evangelicalism. Dorrien takes the reader through the early days of fundamentalism, and traces evangelicalism from the days of Princeton seminary, through the foundation of Fuller Seminary (perhaps one of the most seminal events in evangelicalism's recent history), the disputes over inerrancy in the '60s, '70s, and '80s, and the emerging progressive elements of evangelicalism. He covers in detail the major evangelical thinkers, ranging from Warfield and Machen in the early fundamentalist era, to Henry and Ramm in the era of 'new evangelicalism,' through to Pinnock and Bloesch in more recent times.

Writing as (I think) a theological liberal, Dorrien gives a surprisingly sympathetic portrayal of evangelicalism's development. He is honest about the strengths and weaknesses of the movement, with no particular axe of his own to grind. The Remaking of Evangelical Theology represents a far more even-handed approach than some anti-fundamentalist polemics to be written in recent years, such as that written some twenty years ago by Professor James Barr. In an interview five or six years ago, Barr insisted that evangelicalism has still not progressed since he wrote his earlier critique. Barr paints a picture of evangelicalism as a monolithic movement still clinging to the indefensible inerrancy doctrine of the sort propogated by Harold Lindsell. Dorrien's more nuanced and honest look at the historical development of recent evangelical thought, however, reveals a multi-layered movement in the midst of progression.

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Even Handed

Coming from an Evangelical background, I enjoyed Gary's even handed treatment of Evangelical Theology. He was fair in his treatment of the personalities involved. This is must reading for those who want an independent look at Evangelical Theology.

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