Book Reviews -- By: Anonymous

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 101:403 (Jul 1944)
Article: Book Reviews
Author: Anonymous

Book Reviews

The Doctrine of the Trinity. By Leonard Hodgson, D.D. Charles Scribners’ Sons. 234 pp. $2.50.

The need of a more extended study of the doctrine of the Trinity is evident to many. Dr. Hodgson is Regius Professor of Divinity in the University of Oxford and Canon of Christ Church-a position which imposes on him the responsibility of knowing the great theme on which he writes. The book is highly commended in England by various reviewers. The chapters are verbatim reproductions of the Croall lectures given in Edinburgh in January, 1943-seven lectures in all. Lecture I presents Revelation as the Source of Doctrine; II and III, Revelation in the New Testament; IV, Trinitarian Theology; V, The Doctrine and Philosophy; VI, Three Classical Expositions: Augustine, Aquinas, Calvin; and VII, Trinitarian Religion. To this is added extended appendices. The general character of the book, its style, is anticipated in the author’s words: “These lectures are to attempt to expound the doctrine of the Trinity in terms of present-day thought.” Since, as the author says, “the doctrine is a revelation,” his first chapter bears on that aspect of truth. The conception of this lecture is that revelation rests on actions rather than words. Words merely serve to record action. Thus he writes, “The doctrine of the Trinity is the product of rational reflection on the divine historical activity.” Men must see what God does rather than merely hear what He says. All this is involved in metaphysics respecting the whole being of man as the scope of his receptivity. There is very little contemplation in this volume of the Trinity in its abstract reality. The treatment is continuously involved in its relation to human life and experience. This is the character of the New Testament revelation as the author presents it. The section on the Theology of the Trinity avoids the use of the usual Scriptures or the theological terms. The devout reader will desire much that one Biblical passage might be exalted with due authority. In the section which deals with Philosophy as related to the Trinity, much that is speculation, yet

interesting and suggestive, is introduced. There is real historical value to the lecture bearing on the teachings of Augustine, Aquinas, and Calvin.

The book, as would be expected, is the work of a scholar and stimulates thought but does not refresh the spirit in bringing one nearer to the Persons contemplated. To those who can read with profit while disagreeing on various points, the book will be of genuine value.

President Lewis Sperry Chafer

Evangelism Today. By Samuel M. Zwemer. Fleming H. Revell, New York. 125 pp. $1.50.

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