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Comment: PLEASE READ FULL DESCRIPTION -USED GOOD- This book has been read and may show wear to the cover and or pages. There may be some dog-eared pages. In some cases the internal pages may contain highlighting/margin notes/underlining or any combination of these markings. The binding will be secure in all cases. This is a good reading and studying copy and has been verified that all pages are legible and intact. If the book contained a CD it is not guaranteed to still be included. All items are packed and shipped from the Amazon warehouse.
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Readings in Christian Thought: Second Edition Paperback – March 1, 1990

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Hugh T. Kerr is Benjamin B. Warfield Professor of Systematic Theology, Emeritus, at Princeton Theological Seminary, and senior editor of Theology Today.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 404 pages
  • Publisher: Abingdon Press; 2nd ed. edition (March 1, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0687355478
  • ISBN-13: 978-0687355471
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.9 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,046 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
I would not call this an "easy read." It is, however very worth the effort to do so. The book provides a short explanation of the views and circumstances surrounding a variety of important founding church fathers. You can read the arguments of men such as Justin Martyr, Thomas Aquinus, and Duns Scotus. Their defense of Christianity, known as Apologetics is logical and powerful. How do you prove the existence of God? A difficult question but one these men tackled and did a wonderful job. I recommend it for the library of the serious reader.
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A great intro to the important figures in Christian thought but also a great review course for those who think they've read it all before. Well-written with substantial pieces from women theologians as well as black and liberation perspectives, plus noted theologians such as Thomas Merton, Karl Rahner, etc. Each selection has a very detailed introduction and commments on the life of each theologian and the historical and spiritual significance of his work. Sure to be used for years to come!
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Format: Paperback
I've found this book extremely valuable on two levels: first, it provides an excellent introduction to nearly all of the important Christian theologians and thinkers of the last two millenia - Kerr does a generally excellent job at providing context and the overall significance of each text and author; second, and more personally, Kerr's book has inspired me to pursue many of these theologians to a greater depth and has led me to a new appreciation of the theology of the early church fathers. Again, highly recommended.
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I use this all the time. It is a one-stop shop for viewing a glimpse of what great minds considered prior to our time. We read Scripture over the shoulder of these saints. The book is well structured and provides easy paths for locating both writers/theologians and subjects.
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The Christian Thought arena is packed with many differnent interpretations of the Christian opinionate word (and understanding). Many Chistian (that are not in some form of Christian Teaching climax) don't really understand what they are practicing in their faith. but, with the correct, and sound, information understanding can become greatly appreciated. That is what this books helps me with.
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Something I've been thinking about regarding this reader (and probably not something Kerr intended) - there is a radical shift in the last two hundred pages towards an almost entirely man-centered theology.

If you start at the very beginning and read your whole way through you'll see a pattern that develops - the simplicity of the earliest writers grows in complexity but generally tends to retain its Christ-focused and high theology. During the Reformation, this seems to reach a high point in both theology and worship. This pattern stays fairly steady up until the end of the 18th century.

As Romanticism dawned, the selections slump downhill until the modern period. The last sections of the book are almost impossible, especially in contrast with the beauty and humility of the first sections. Kerr seems to be emphasizing how wonderful this ecumenical movement by showcasing all the various elements involved, but it really shows how man-focused the whole endeavor has become.

I give it four stars because he tips his hand throughout in the biographical sections that he does not like any form of scholasticism. There seems to be a general trend in modern scholarship that says any form of clarity in doctrine must mean a loss in other areas. My suspicion is that this philosophy is driven by a desire to de-emphasize doctrine so everybody can hold hands and sing songs. My criticism is that it is not scholaticism that's the problem, but man-centered thinking, whether it results in careful or sloppy thinking.

Other than this, it is a good introduction. I would like to see some people who believe the Bible to be true in the last two sections, but that's not the author's intent. I mean, come on! Who actually believes that stuff now a days?
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Dr. Kerr has collected key portions of the important writings related the the development of Christian thought through the centuries. I suggest reading this book in parallel with "The History of Christian Thought" by Jonathan Hill. http://www.amazon.com/History-Christian-Thought-Jonathan-Hill/dp/0830828451
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Thoroughly enjoyable and extremely informative. An excellent way to get exposed to the teachings of Christian thinkers (both good and bad) throughout the centuries. We in the 21st century did not suddenly invent Christian theology -- there is nothing new that has not already been thought about or discussed in some way by the church fathers and other writers over the past 2000 years. What we believe today is built on the battles they fought and molded by the theology they taught (again, both good and bad).
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