Understanding St Paul

Understanding St Paul

Paul, the Apostle’s Life, Letters and Thought EP Sanders SCM, pb, £40   The Paul Debate NT Wright SPCK, pb, £16.99   As Christians prepare to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the start of the Lutheran Reformation it is ironical that Luther’s interpretation of St Paul’s understanding of Justification by Faith is rejected by a […]

Reflective books

Reflective books

Frances Young is one of Britain’s leading theologians. In Construing the Cross (SPCK) she looks at the rich imagery and different ways in which the cross of Christ was discussed before ‘atonement theories’ narrowed the categories. She begins with Passover typology then moves to sacrificial imagery with the concept of the scapegoat and then to […]

Understanding Augustine

Understanding Augustine

On Augustine Rowan Williams Bloomsbury, hb, £25.00   Augustine of Hippo is a figure of key importance in Christian theology but he gets mixed reviews. Critics accuse him of influencing Christian thinking about love and sex for the worst, of stressing the unity of the Trinity more than the diversity of persons, of being partly […]

New book tackles the challenges of the atheists

New book tackles the challenges of the atheists

How To Believe John Cottingham Bloomsbury, hb, £16.99   “It is wrong, always, everywhere, and for anyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence,” wrote the Victorian mathematician and philosopher, WK Clifford, in a famous essay, The Ethics of Belief. Clifford’s views were challenged by William James in his equally famous essay The Will to Believe […]

Mindfulness is key

Mindfulness is key

            It is now widely accepted that the fact people say they do not believe in God does not mean they do not believe in some kind of ‘higher power’ and the fact that people claim to be not religious does not mean that they are not interested is spirituality. […]

Growing in grace

Growing in grace

Reading the Bible, prayer and fellowship with other believers are described by David Mathis as habits that can help us grow in God’s grace. In Habits of Grace (IVP) he tells us how these habits can give us access to a host of spiritual blessings.

How Esther is still relevant today

How Esther is still relevant today

God and Politics in Esther (Cambridge) is a book by a Jewish scholar that can be read with profit and interest by Christians. Horam Hazony answers a question many have asked about why a story of sex, violence and political intrigue in which God is not even mentioned once is included in holy scripture by […]

New approaches to prayer

New approaches to prayer

Calling on the Name of the Lord (IVP) is an excellent guide to prayer in the Bible by J Gary Miller of the Queensland Theological College in Australia. As well as surveying the biblical material, Miller also suggests how it relates to the Christian life today.

Analysing human rights

Analysing human rights

The question of how different religions view human rights is discussed by Martin Davie in a new study from the Oxford Centre for Religion and Public Life, Religious Approaches to Human Rights. Davie is a former theological adviser to the House of Bishops and he writes fairly and sanely about a very important topic.

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