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Systematic Theology 3 Vol. Set Hardcover – April 30, 2006

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 1614 pages
  • Publisher: Hendrickson Pub (April 30, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1598560360
  • ISBN-13: 978-1598560367
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 6.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #320,274 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Demonstrates a commitment of faithfulness to the scriptural teachings concerning Jesus and a rich appreciation for the classical and conciliar traditions of Christology." - Preaching "The most impressive systematic exercise in ecumenical 'consensual thinking' in print." - Religious Studies Review

About the Author

Thomas C Oden is the Henry Anson Buttz Professor of Theology, Drew University, New Jersey, USA.

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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Gerard Reed on March 18, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Should Thomas C. Oden proves to be a harbinger of things to come, systematic theology (after taking a back seat to "biblical theology" for several decades) has regained its vitality. I recommend all three volumes of his work to anyone seriously interested in both a comprehensive discussion of doctrine and a resolutely "back-to-the-Fathers" brand of thinking.
The trilogy consists of: The Living God: Systematic Theology: Volume One San Francisco: Harper & Row, Publishers, c. 1987); The Word of Life: Systematic Theology: Volume Two (San Francisco: Harper & Row, c. 1989); and Life in the Spirit: Systematic Theology: Volume Three (San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, c. 1992).
Oden seeks to formulate an ecumenical, consensual theology--"an ordered view of the faith of the Christian community" (I,ix), mutually acceptable to Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant believers. Amidst a world culturally collapsing (for "modernity" has passed he thinks), it's time to unite and rediscover the common roots of the various traditions which will equip Christ's Church to move rightly into the uncertainties of tomorrow. That requires us to find guides who are not so much up-to-date as they are dateless, less avante-guarde than guarding the gates, less attuned to the times than in touch with the past. Thus Oden insists that the core doctrines of Christianity were effectively defined during the first 500 years of Church history and are best discerned in the biblical and classical documents preserved from antiquity. We need nothing new! What needs to be said has already been said. What we need is a renewal of what is true! Thus Oden endeavors to be studiously unoriginal, modestly introducing the reader to the wealth of classical authorities.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By George on October 9, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I have read a multitude of theology books and must admit that this is my definitive series. It goes to the core of christian beliefs and shows what is believed by all and not just some bias of a denomintion. I enjoy reading the books and hope to read more books from this spiritual individual.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Andy on August 15, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Thomas Oden says his purpose is "to set forth an ordered view of the faith of the Christian community upon which there has generally been substantial agreement between the traditions of East and West, including Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox" (Vol 1, ix). He accomplishes this task in a manner that explores the depths of faith and the breadth of human wisdom. I have encountered no other theological work that compares with the sheer volume of citations within these three volumes. Indeed, Oden says he would rather you explore the original texts than to take his word for it. He would rather his voice fade amidst the beautiful symphony woven by the classical Church Fathers and Mothers. Not only does Oden engage classical Christian thinkers, he also relies extensively on the Bible as authoritative Scripture.

Even for disciples of modern theological schools of thought, this is an opportunity to hear voices that have survived centuries of turmoil and struggle. This great cloud of witnesses did not always live, write, and preach in the safety of religious or social freedom. Persecution and violent schisms provide much of the backdrop for their social locations. Oden brings to life the faithful voice of ecumenical consensus despite such circumstances, ultimately transcending time and place.

Though more could be said of the content, the volumes are also user-friendly and accessible. Oden structures this Systematic Theology so that related topics are reasonably grouped, and logically ordered. He also provides the following indices at the end of each volume: Name (index of persons discussed or referenced), Subject (topical index), Scripture (index of Biblical verses discussed or referenced).
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