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Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms Paperback – May 26, 1999
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About the Author
Ordained into the gospel ministry in 1976, Grenz worked within the local church context as a youth director and assistant pastor (Northwest Baptist Church, Denver), pastor (Rowandale Baptist Church, Winnipeg), and interim pastor. In addition he preached and lectured in numerous churches, colleges, universities and seminaries in North America, Europe, Africa, Australia and Asia.
Grenz wrote or cowrote twenty-five books, the most recent of which is Rediscovering the Triune God: The Trinity in Contemporary Theology (2004). His other books include The Social God and the Relational Self: A Trinitarian Theology of the Imago Dei (Westminster John Knox), Beyond Foundationalism: Shaping Theology in a Postmodern Context (with John R. Franke; Westminster John Knox), The Moral Quest: Foundations of Christian Ethics (IVP), A Primer on Postmodernism (Eerdmans), Women in the Church: A Biblical Theology of Women in Ministry (with Denise Muir Kjesbo; IVP), Revisioning Evangelical Theology: A Fresh Agenda for the 21st Century (IVP), and The Millennial Maze: Sorting Out Evangelical Options (IVP). He has also coauthored several shorter reference and introductory books for IVP, including Who Needs Theology? An Invitation to the Study of God (with Roger E. Olson), Pocket Dictionary of Ethics (with Jay T. Smith), and Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms (with David Guretzki and Cherith Fee Nordling). He contributed articles to more than two dozen other volumes, and has had published more than one hundred essays and eighty book reviews. These have appeared in journals such as Christianity Today, The Christian Century, Christian Scholar's Review, Theology Today and the Journal of Ecumenical Studies.
For twelve years (1990-2002), Grenz held the position of Pioneer McDonald Professor of Baptist Heritage, Theology and Ethics at Carey Theological College and at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia. After a one-year sojourn as Distinguished Professor of Theology at Baylor University and Truett Seminary in Waco, Texas (2002-2003), he returned to Carey and resumed his duties as Pioneer McDonald Professor of Theology. In 2004 he assumed an additional appointment as Professor of Theological Studies at Mars Hill Graduate School in Seattle, Washington.
David Guretzki (PhD, McGill University) is professor of theology, church, and public life at Briercrest College and Seminary in Caronport, Saskatchewan, Canada. He is also a coauthor of Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms.
Cherith Fee Nordling (PhD, University of St. Andrews) is associate professor of theology at Northern Seminary in Lombard, Illinois. She has also taught at Regent College, Vancouver, as well as Kuyper College, Cornerstone University and Calvin College and Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She is the author of Knowing God by Name.
Top Customer Reviews
It need hardly be said that a book which tries to squeeze a world of theology into a mere 122 pages will have its limitations. Nonetheless, it is surprisingly comprehensive, and refreshingly clear and concise. So, for example, it covers the Council of Nicea, the theology of Karl Barth, the meaning of fundamentalism, and more than 300 topics besides.
The authors state that their purpose is simply to "provide you with a foundational, working knowledge of the concepts". In this they certainly succeed - and with language that should be within the scope of most beginners. While most of their definitions would find general acceptance, they state that they give preference to a "broadly evangelical, Protestant perspective".
The one obvious shortcoming of the book is that it would sometimes seem to be capricious in its selection of terms. For example, salvation is defined, yet mission is not. The imago Dei is defined, yet the imitatio Christi is not. Adolf von Harnack receives an entry, yet Jürgen Moltmann does not. And finally - wait for it - Protestantism is defined, yet Roman Catholicism is not!
Having said this, many of the omissions (e.g. Roman Catholicism) would come into focus with a complete reading of the book, and this does not seriously detract from the usefulness of the book as a whole.
A full theological dictionary can "cost a ton", besides being difficult for beginners to cope with. This small book provides a cheap and handy alternative, and has the endorsement of leading evangelical seminaries. For what it is worth, it is a good reference work well written.
At last I've been able to find a dictionary with terms like pragmatism, predestination, panenthiesm, and other such terms I cannot recall at this moment. Many people do not understand the differences between a bible dictionary and theological dictionary, so for a long time I did not know that a theology dictionary existed. My only gripe is that there are theological terms not in this book (natural evil, free will theory,etc..) and many of the terms in this book are way to concise. However I did find a expanded dictionary on theological terms at the local Christian Bookstore, but it cost over $50 and was not pocketable.
So my conclusion is. If you just need a simple dictionary that is both cheap, and does not weigh 50 pounds, then buy this dictionary.
As the names of the publishers would indicate, the authors of these two small dictionaries can be described as evangelicals with basic aims that are similar. Both books seek to help students of theology who would otherwise be put off by specialist vocabulary. The main difference between the two is obvious: while Erikson's Concise Dictionary contains over 2,900 entries of about two sentences each, the work under review, Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms, contains nearly 500 entries that are longer and that offer more detail.
For example, under the letter "Q", Erikson has eight very short entries, including "quadriga," "qualitative distinction," "Quensted, Johannes Andreas," and "Qumran" (but not "quest of the historical Jesus). By comparison, Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms contains only one entry, "quest of the historical Jesus," which runs to well over a hundred words and provides a good summary.
So, for quick reference I will continue to use Erikson first, mainly because of its wider scope. I am just more likely to find what I'm looking for in that reference work. But I will sometimes also pick up the Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms to see if it gives further help, or has an entry where Erikson does not. Teachers of theology can recommend either or both of these works to their students. Preachers and teachers in a church setting will find either of them very useful in their ministries.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I've learned so much from this book in the Short few days that I've had it! Very useful terminology if you are looking to enhance your Theological knowledge.Published 1 month ago by Erica
This book was ok this is what the instructor ordered, it didn't meet all define words that was in the assignment.Published 6 months ago by Jennifer Parker