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Church Dogmatics Paperback – November 1, 1994

4.4 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“One of the most notable theological publications of our time…” —Expository Times“He is undoubtedly one of the giants in the history of theology.” —Christianity Today“Not only in Barth’s sermons, where one would expect it, but in the Dogmatics as well, there are countless passages that breathe the most positive kind of affirmation of the goodness and wonder and power of God’s overwhelming love.” —Robert McAfee Brown

"It is hard to imagine serious students of Barth (or any genuine book-lover) being happy to own the Dogmatics in digital form only, not least because the new print edition in 31 volumes is so immensely attractive!"
-David Gibson, Themelios
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: German
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press; 1st Authorized English translation under license from T&T Clark edition (November 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0664255507
  • ISBN-13: 978-0664255503
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #126,113 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By John O VINE VOICE on February 25, 2002
Format: Paperback
"Church Dogmatics: A Selection" is an excellent introduction to the theology of Karl Barth. Anyone even remotely acquainted with Christian theology cannot dispute the fact that Karl Barth is one of the most relevant and scholarly theological minds of our time. He articulated some of the most basic, yet profound truths of the Bible at a time when mainstream Christian theology had begun to place less and less emphasis on the Bible as God's inspired Word. He dialogues with the great theologians and philosophers from Luther to Calvin, to the scholastics, to his contemporaries. The unifying thread through his writing is the person of Jesus Christ, as witnessed in scripture. Barth, in his Church Dogmatics, did what no other modern theologian has been able to do with such clarity- he synthesized a millenium of Christian thought and focused it through the lens of what scripture says about Christ. His Doctrine of the Word of God is an amazing and thorough exposition of the topic- to get the full thrust of what Barth was saying, though, I would recommend working through the multi-volume set of his Church Dogmatics. For introductory or casual reading (if such a thing is possible), I would highly recommend starting with this concise volume. Best wishes on your theological quest!
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Format: Paperback
If you are interested in modern Christian theology, and have vast amounts of time and money, then by all means buy and carefully study all 31 volumes (8,676 pages) of Karl Barth's epochal Church Dogmatics (31 vols). However, if you find yourself lacking in one or the other area, you might consider this inexpensive yet sympathetically-selected book of excerpts from the first four volumes of Barth's magnum opus. (Be aware that this collection was published in 1961, at which time only up through volumes IV, 2 were available in English translation.)

The Editor's Preface states, "It should be emphasized that, while the work may lead more general readers to a fruitful acquaintance with Barth, it cannot replace the Dogmatics for serious students ... the work primarily serves its intended purpose of introduction and orientation, as also, it is to be hoped, of stimulation." Helmut Gollwitzer (1908-1993), himself a noteworthy theologian, has written the very helpful 28-page introduction.

Here are a few representative quotations:

"Who and what is God Himself? ... God Himself is in fact simply the One of whom all prophets and apostles explained that they had heard His voice and had to obey Him..." (pg. 36)
"But again, we do not really know Jesus (the Jesus of the New Testament) if we do not know Him as this poor man, as this (if we may risk the dangerous word) partisan of the poor, and finally as this revolutionary." (pg. 110)
"Life does not fear death but knows it well." (pg. 160)
"Jesus Christ is the one Word of God. There are other words which are good in their own way and measure. There are other prophets in this sense ... But there is only one Prophet who speaks the Word of God as He is Himself this Word, and this One is called and is Jesus." (Pg. 230)
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By A Customer on September 1, 1999
Format: Paperback
Karl Barth's Church Dogmatics is one of the most important theological treatises of all-time, which set the agenda for religious thinking in the first half of the 20th Century. However, its sheer size and depth (reminiscent of Aquinas' Summa Theologiae) frequently discourage average readers from delving into its treasury of insights. Professor Gollwitzer's short selection of the Dogmatics provides a useful introduction to Barth's most important themes, especially his understanding of revelation, Christology, and salvation. Great reading for any serious college or seminary student who wants to wrestle with the mind of this great Christian thinker!
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Format: Hardcover
I am almost finished with V I.1, the doctrine of the Word of God for the second time. I am not a theologian and do not read Greek, but this is the best and most complete view of Evangelical Protestant thinking I have ever read. It has answered questions I have had about Christianity since I was a small boy. I highly recommend it for all persons who want to study and think about their religion. All the work I have put into understanding it has been more than paid back in blessings. I want to commend Hendrickson for the excellent quality of their hardback edition. My notes on the paperback I read first more or less tore it up, but as I am transferring those notes to the new hardback it remains in tip top shape.
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Format: Hardcover
I bought the 14 volume hard cover edition of Barth's Church Dogmatics for a song, though the Kindle version offered here is extremely reasonable. I suspect this edition of Barth's Dogmatics may become rare given that a new 31 volume study edition is being produced where all the Greek, Hebrew and Latin comments in the footnotes have been translated into English. But, if you don't mind slugging your way through some Greek and Latin, this is the preferable edition to have given the amount of space 14 volumes alone will take up on your book shelf.

That said, one has only to peruse the Dogmatics to be impressed by the depth and range of Barth's learning. I would hardly call myself a Barthian, but he is indeed the most significant "church father" of the 20th century having rescued much of European Christianity from an excess of liberal and overly optimistic theology as well as impacting important Roman Catholic theologians such as Hans Ur von Balthasar. There really is no one comparable to Barth in the realm of dogmatics in the previous century.

Barth can ramble at times, his thoughts sprawl across a number of pages such that he could have used an editor to condense some of his thought, but the learning that he brings to the table makes up for his prolixity and even if you do not agree with his conclusions you will understand how he got there. Few will have the time to read all 9,000 plus pages, but using this resource as a reference will be immensely rewarding to any serious student of theology.
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