By Donald G. Bloesch / Wipf & Stock / 2002
In this book, Donald Bloesch sharply diverges from much traditional thinking on the relationship between theology and philosophy and suggests an alternative that is solidly anchored in biblical faith. Instead of seeing this relationship in terms of synthesis, correlation, or even simple subordination, he calls for the conversion and transformation of philosophical meanings in the light of the biblical revelation. Philosophy can be of considerable aid to theologians, Bloesch argues, but they must take care not to let philosophical concepts determine the meaning of faith. Reason can be enlisted in the service of revelation, but it cannot establish the truth of revelation.
Against the irrationalism of contemporary existentialist theology and the rationalism that has pervaded both scholastic orthodoxy (Catholic and Protestant) and liberal philosophical theology, Bloesch proposes an evangelical theology of revelation that seeks to employ reason in the task of understanding the faith. The author upholds not an autonomous reason but an obedient reason, and he shows that this ideal has support in the history of theology as well as in the Bible.
For more by Donald G. Bloesch, see Select Works of Donald G. Bloesch.
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. . . [A] most readable and highly provocative book. It strikes a series of shrewd and powerful blows for the independence of theology from philosophy, and demands that the Christian faith be allowed to stand on its own feet and speak for itself. I venture to predict that the direction in which it points us is the direction in which theology is going increasingly to move.
—Philip S. Watson, professor of systematic theology, Garret Theological Seminary
Donald G. Bloesch is professor of theology emeritus at Dubuque Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa. Bloesch was educated at the University of Chicago, Oxford University, University of Tubingen, and Basel University, where he studied under Karl Barth.
He has written numerous books, including Faith and Its Counterfeits, Evangelical Theology in Transition, Essentials of Evangelical Theology, The Future of Evangelical Christianity, The Struggle of Prayer and Freedom for Obedience. He is also a past president of the Midwest Division of the American Theological Society.