Reviews -- By: Anonymous

Journal: Trinity Journal
Volume: TRINJ 03:1 (Spring 1982)
Article: Reviews
Author: Anonymous


The Word of Truth: A Summary of Christian Doctrine Based on Biblical Revelation, by Dale Moody. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1981. 628 pp. $24.95.

While systematic theology deals with immutable realities, the changing intellectual climate tends to expose its human framework and to necessitate a recasting of the great doctrines of the faith for each generation. But few are really qualified for this demanding task, which is made even more difficult by the ever-expanding body of theological literature. Therefore, it is of real interest to the theological community when a work such as Moody’s appears.

The author’s credentials are impressive. He has earned doctorates from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he has also served as professor of theology since 1945, and Oxford University. He has also studied at Dallas Theological Seminary, Columbia University, and the universities of Basel, Zurich, and Heidelberg. He is an ordained Southern Baptist minister with several years of pastoral experience, has served on the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council of Churches, and has spoken internationally. His publications include significant contributions to several important works, including Interpreters Dictionary of the Bible, and at least five complete books.

In the present volume Moody attempts to bring into a constructive harmony the insights of disciplines such as biblical theology, biblical criticism, historical theology, and modern science. He also employs selected concepts from non-Christian religions and the philosophers of religion, but within what he sees as a higher view of the inspiration and authority of the Bible. The canonical Scriptures must serve as the common ground and the ultimate source for the theological task. However, the Bible is to be understood in a dialogical way in which biblical theology is interpreted and applied in the setting of modern science and society. Important as sources also are the creeds and confessions which express the various interpretations of Scripture and explain the many roots and branches of the Christian Church. The modern landscape of theology is discussed in terms of five movements: (1) philosophical liberalism which reached its crest in the nineteenth century and has fanned out into a broad delta in the twentieth; (2) the reaction of Protestant fundamentalism; (3) the emergence of the Neo-Orthodox theology of Karl Barth and Emil Brunner; (4) the reaction of the radical theology seen in Paul Tillich and his followers; and (5) the more recent partial reorientation seen in men like Jürgen Moltmann, James H. Cone, and Gustavo Gutierrez.

After sources the author gives attention to revelation. Although Scripture is the supreme source of revelation, experience, c...

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