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Discussion in 'Books / Publications Forum' started by R. Lawson, Dec 29, 2010.
Really depends on what you believe
I like Wayne Grudem's Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (1994) [LINK]
Baptistic; good general information about different opinions; devotional; and offers resources to other systematic theology texts for comparison.
I'm still with Emil Brunner.
Oh wait - you mean that book sitting next to me? I really like this book as well because it's a VERY easy read - not so deep that a dummy like me can't understand it. I had it as my nighttime reading book for over a year as I worked through it with my Bible and it was excellent. I've used it often as a reference.
A.H. Strong, Anthony Hoekema, Hodge and other reformed theologians. Far too many to list for practical purposes.
Grudem is good, but weak in a couple of areas. Millard T Erickson's magnificent work is...well, magnificent, but not an easy read. Bruce Milne's Know the Truth is a good, short work for most laity. James Leo Garrett's work is good at interaction. Daniel Akin has a new one that is okay, save for the chapter on Soteriology. Otherwise, it's superb. James P Boyce and James M Boice (note the spellings) have good systematics as well. Thomas Oden's 3 volume set is now available in one volume. And everyone should read Calvin's Institutes just for the exposure.
If you put a gun to my head, probably Milne for the lay person and probably Erickson for the pastor, but Grudem would be a close second.
The works of Robert Reymond and Duncan Culver are very good. I have consulted them regularly over the years.
I'd have to agree with you on Grudem. His book is refreshing for a theological work and easier reading than most others I have read. I am reading through this.
Hey no one's mentioned Geisler's 4-volume set -perhaps because he's not a Baptist. It's very good in places but I disagree with his conclusions in others.
I've never found a Systematic Theology that isn't weak in some areas....and that includes Erickson, which I agree is excellent.
I haven't seen Milne or Oden's volumes.
Thomas Oden's looks very good, .... I put it on a 'someday list'.
Grudem labels me an heretic because I believe in the permissive will of God!!!! Guess he had to do one better than the old reformed theologians.
He actually says in his book "Jim1999 is an "h" word?!!!"
Just kidding. :thumbs:
I'll have to check out his stance on that subject.
A good paper: http://www.angelfire.com/tn/steveweaver/articles/godsovereignmanfree.htm
I appreciate the replies. :thumbs:
As far as I know, Oden is a sinless perfectionist. Even so, I've wanted to read his text after reading Arminian Theology: Myths and Realities by Roger Olson.
I was not aware of the one volume text.:1_grouphug:
I am reading Thomas Oden's Systematic Theology. I use the 3 vol. edition. A single volume would be nice for look up. Oden is easy to read--don't find myself reading a page three or four times. I also like the way Oden brings in the older theologians from the early years of Christianity. Good stuff in the ancients.
There is a lot of theology in hymns. So, in a way, church hymn books can be seen as documents of systematic theology. Particularly those hymn books with a topical index. However, older hymn books, in my opinion, make better theology books than do modern hymn books.
I found Oden's single volume text at ChristianBook. I thought it best to round out my library with some Arminian texts, namely Oden's single volume text and Robert Shank's Life in the Son and Elect in the Son. Note that I do not hold most of Oden's and Shank's theological views.:type:
Here's a list of what I have.
Oden's Classic Christianity: A Systematic Theology
Robert Shank's Life in the Son and Elect in the Son
Ryrie's Basic Theology
Grudem's Systematic Theology
Barnhouse on Romans
Christian Theology by Samuel Wakefield
Rodman Williams' Renewal Theology: Systematic Theology from a Charismatic Perspective
Luther's Bondage of the Will
Horton's Systematic Theology
The Complete Works of Jacobus Arminius.
Lectures in Systematic Theology by Henry Clarence Thiessan.
What about Geisler's four volume systematic theology books? Are they any good?
That's some list!
Here are a few older ones I have
Berkhof’s Systematic Theology
Buswell’s, A Systematic theology of the Christian Religion
Dabney’s Systematic Theology
Hodge’s Systematic Theology
Pope’s Compendium of Christian Theology (3 Vol)
Augustus Strong’s Systematic Theology
Re: Geisler, He goes through his theology thoroughly and methodically (I guess that’s why they call it a systematic theology).
He approaches an issue, defines it, provides a biblical and theological basis for it; then approaches it historically (from the very earliest of the Church fathers through Medieval age, the Reformation and into modern times. He then considers objections to the issue, weighing them and responding to them.
It’s a worthy set of volumes.
Despite its considerable length it lacks depth at times (an issue I generally have with all Systematic Theology texts I’ve read). I’ve found that for a real in-depth study you need a monograph on an issue.
Other times with his objections review, he answers questions that others don’t even ask.
This alone makes the volumes worth purchasing.
To rightly understand Calvin's theology, you should have his commentary on Romans. The institutes were written early on and he made many changes, mostly covered in his commentary on Romans.
I have to remind you Jim, that Calvin's commentary on Romans and his first revision of the Institutes were both published in the year 1539 when he was 30.
First Institutes were in 1536 and were updated regularly. 2nd edition came in 1538 and Romans in 1540. Calvin made corrections and additional comments for his entire life.
I don't trust Grudem. The work is mostly okay, but there are others that are better.
Millard T. Erickson for one.
I prefer Roger Olson's text...think it's called Mosaic of Christian Belief or something like that. It's an easier read and a much smaller volume than Erickson. It's also a bit more gracious to dissenting views than Grudem.