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With the Grain of the Universe: The Church's Witness and Natural Theology Hardcover – October 1, 2001

4.9 out of 5 stars 8 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Those invited to give the Gifford Lectures in natural theology, offered annually at Saint Andrew's University, Scotland, generally avoid presenting anything denominationally based. In the 2001 lectures, transcribed here with copious footnotes, Hauerwas (theological ethics, Duke Univ.; Resident Aliens) consciously disregarded that practice. He instead treats the Christian, Trinitarian God by considering the philosophies of four previous Gifford lecturers: William James, Reinhold Niebuhr, Karl Barth, and Alasdair MacIntyre. Hauerwas views the theologies of James and Niebuhr as lacking the full doctrine of God and considers Barth's theology to be a better representative of what theology should be, i.e., the recognition that God can only fully be known as he reveals himself through Jesus. Hauerwas's more traditional Christian view will certainly not be accepted by everyone, but it is a well-reasoned argument. Recommended for seminary and larger public libraries. Augustine J. Curley, Newark Abbey, NJ
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From the Inside Flap

More praise for With the Grain of the Universe, the Gifford Lectures at the University of St. Andrews (2001):

"An unexpectred threesome-William James, Reinhold Niebuhr, and Karl Barth-make for a surprising story and an original book. In Hauerwas's fresh interpretation of American intellectual history, Niebuhr the neo-orthodox theologian appears not as the Christian alternative to James's pragmatism,but as a thin religious version of the same, packaged in the vocabulary of Christian theology. Against this backdrop, Hauerwas draws on Karl Barth to set forth a 'theology without reservation' that takes modernity seriously but meets it not on modernity's terms but on the church's terms . . . This is a book we have long awaited: Hauerwas's account of what went wrong and what went right with theology in the twentieth century."
-Robert Louis Wilken, author of The Christians As the Romans Saw Them and The Land Called Holy

"In its animated conversations with William James, Reinhold Niebuhr, and Karl Barth, and its constructive proposals, this book makes for fine reading and ought to stir up some new and serious debate about what the church's confession has to say about natural reality."
-John Webster, Oxford University

"Hauerwas offers a highly informed account of his claim that Karl Barth understood what . . . William James and Reinhold Niebuhr did not: that natural theology is intelligible only as part of the whole doctrine of God revealed in Christ. Whether or not one agrees with Hauerwas-I do not-this book will rightly set the agenda for future discussion about the sources and authorities by which 'natural theology' may proceed."
-Harlan Beckley, Washington and Lee University


Stanley Hauerwas is Gilbert T. Rowe Professor of Theological Ethics at Duke University. He is a prolific author, with previous books including Resident Aliens, A Community of Character, The Peaceable Kingdom, and A Better Hope. Hauerwas has made signal contributions to three of the most influential developments in theology over the last thirty years: postliberalism, narrative theology, and virtue ethics. Vigorous and far-ranging in argument, he is perhaps the most quoted and debated theologian of our day.

Product details

  • Item Weight : 3.5 pounds
  • Hardcover : 256 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 9781587430169
  • ISBN-13 : 978-1587430169
  • Dimensions : 6.25 x 1 x 9.25 inches
  • Publisher : Brazos Press; First edition (October 1, 2001)
  • Language: : English
  • ASIN : 1587430169
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.9 out of 5 stars 8 ratings

Customer reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed in the United States on March 20, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on March 20, 2018

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東方敬信
5.0 out of 5 stars With the Grain of the Universe
Reviewed in Japan on April 27, 2014
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