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I bought this book because it was one of 12 volumes in a series. I've found it to be not only the best of the series, but one of the best books I've ever read. Dr. Mullins interprets the Christian faith via the belief that every soul is competant to relate to God without mediation through other humans or human institutions. From this conviction he draws six truths (axioms) of the faith. The axioms deal with one's relationship with God, other Christians, and society. The language is written on a common level (for 1908), but is rich and carefully expressed. In addition to the 12 chapters of the title there is an excellant selection of additional short writings by Dr. Mullins. This book has helped me to gain a new perspective of my beliefs and has strengthened my faith. My only complaint is that it lacks chapters 13-17, which I found in an original 1908 copy.
The Axioms of Religion, by E.Y. Mullins, is a classic work on theology and denominational relations. It is biblical, visionary, inspiring, thought-provoking, and practical. Though it was written to deal with Southern Baptist issues 100 years ago, it is still completely relevant for Southern Baptists today and for all Christian institutions and organizations.
His opening illustration of the forest - "Each recurring season brings a new test to the trees of a forest." - sets the tone of the book. He is in essence saying that each season of a denomination's, a Christian institution's, and a church's existence will bring a new set of challenges. Those that survive must learn to successfully deal with each of them that comes along. "Changing circumstances bring fresh tests of endurance. The weak or decrepit succumb, the strong survive."
His profound insights are needed by Christian leaders for today - especially in the "Post Denomination Age" we are supposedly in. Mullins wrote: "There must be, then, some motive or incentive or cohesive principle strong enough to give unity to each of the religious bodies if these bodies are to continue their careers of usefulness. Denominational self-respect, a sense of a divine calling and missions, must possess any religious body which counts for so much in the world. The prophetic mood, which implies that the soul is conquered by some great truth or truths, and seeks passionately and restlessly to propagate those truths, is a prime condition of power."
A denomination cannot hold together on the basis of only a willingness to "live and let live." There must be a passionate center that is well established and draws us together.Read more ›
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Agree or disagree with Edgar Young Mullins' theology for Baptists in the new century, his grappling with modernity in the early 1900s produced a body of thought that still, as then, merits examination. Doug Weaver has served new readers well with his editorial introduction and update on the significance of Mullins for Baptists and Christians of other denominations.
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