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Spectrum Multiview Series (21 vols.)

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Spectrum Multiview Books from IVP Academic offer a range of viewpoints on academic topics about which Christians clearly disagree. The unique format, pioneered by IVP in 1977 with the publication of The Meaning of the Millennium, gives proponents of major positions an opportunity to make their case. Each of the other contributors then offers a brief response. Books in the series range in topic from theology to science, from practical ministry to philosophy. Spectrum books help Christians think more carefully about what they believe and appreciate more the perspectives of others.

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  • Presents a diverse, but distinctly Christian set of perspectives
  • See how authors of opposing views interact and handle objections
  • Fosters understanding of alternative viewpoints
  • Lays a foundation for understanding how theories for viewing morality have bearing in every day life
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In the Logos edition, these volumes are enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Baptism: Three Views

  • Editor: David F. Wright
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Pages: 200

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The Christian church confesses “one baptism.” But the church’s answers to how, whom and when to baptize, and even what it means or does, are famously varied. This book provides a forum for thoughtful proponents of three principal evangelical views to state their case, respond to the others, and then provide a summary response and statement. Sinclair Ferguson sets out the case for infant baptism, Bruce Ware presents the case for believers’ baptism, and Anthony Lane argues for a mixed practice.

As with any good conversation on a controversial topic, this book raises critical issues, challenges preconceptions and discloses the soft points in each view. Evangelicals who wish to understand better their own church’s practice or that of their neighbor, or who perhaps are uncertain of their own views, will value this incisive book.

Regardless of one’s theological stance on baptism, the essays in this volume will serve to sharpen and challenge. . . This volume can be very helpful in a variety of venues and climates if people are willing to engage the issue openly and to give an honest hearing of divergent opinions.

—Brian Allred, Mid-America Journal of Theology, October 2010

This book can help Christians understand their church’s practice and the practice of other churches in baptism.

—Roy B. Zuch, Bibliotheca Sacra, April-June 2010

Baptism engages the reader by using etymological examples, contextual examples from Scripture, historical examples, and many other illustrations to draw conclusions, challenge preconceived notions, and point out weaknesses in each argument. The book is geared toward seminary students or pastors seeking to clarify their positions and better understand the positions of others, but is equally engaging for the average reader who has perhaps never fully investigated his personal beliefs on the subject.

—Rachel Lonas, Pulpit Helps, August 2009

David F. Wright (1937-2008) was professor of patristic and Reformation Christianity at New College, University of Edinburgh. He wrote a number of books on both historical and theological topics.

Biblical Hermeneutics: Five Views

  • Editors: Stanley E. Porter and Beth M. Stovell
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2012
  • Pages: 224

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Five experts in biblical hermeneutics gather here to state and defend their approach to the discipline. Contributors include: Craig Blomberg with the historical-critical/grammatical approach, Richard Gaffin with the redemptive-historical approach, Scott Spencer with the literary/postmodern approach, Robert Wall with the canonical approach and Merold Westphal with the philosophical/theological approach.

This is an undoubtedly interesting volume. The contributors describe their methodologies clearly and largely succeed in making the abstract and theoretical nature of the subject matter accessible.

—Jonathan Kearney, Journal for the Study of the New Testament, 35(5)

Biblical Hermeneutics is a welcome addition to the often labyrinthine discussion of biblical interpretation. Each essay is clearly and astutely written, and the congenial tone of the contributors is refreshing.

—Andrea L. Robinson, Journal for Baptist Theology and Ministry, Fall 2013

The dialogue between these five views presents a basic hermeneutical conversation in a very accessible way. . . . Academics, students of biblical studies, and pastors will find this a helpful addition to their libraries.

—Matthew James Hamilton, Bible Study Magazine, September/October 2012

Stanley E. Porter (PhD, University of Sheffield) is president, dean and professor of New Testament at McMaster Divinity College in Hamilton, Ontario. At McMaster he also holds the Roy A. Hope Chair in Christian Worldview. He is the author of numerous studies in the New Testament and Greek language, including The Paul of Acts: Essays in Literary Criticism, Rhetoric, and Theology; Idioms of the Greek New Testament and Verbal Aspect in the Greek of the New Testament, with Reference to Tense and Mood. He has also edited volumes such as History of Classical Rhetoric in the Hellenistic Period, 330 B.C.-A.D. 400 and Handbook to Exegesis of the New Testament.

Beth M. Stovell (PhD, McMaster Divinity College) is assistant professor of Old Testament at Ambrose Seminary of Ambrose University, Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She has authored Mapping Metaphorical Discourse in the Fourth Gospel: John’s Eternal King and co-edited Biblical Hermeneutics: Five Views with Dr. Stanley E. Porter. Beth has also contributed chapters in edited volumes such as Holy Spirit: Unfinished Agenda, Devotions on the Hebrew Bible and Global Perspectives on the Bible.

Christian Ethics: Four Views

  • Editor: Steve Wilkens
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Pages: 224

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The field of Christian ethics is the subject of frequent conversation as Christians seek to understand how to live faithfully within a pluralistic society. The range of ethical systems and moral philosophies available can be confusing to people seeking clarity about what the different theories mean for everyday life.

Christian Ethics: Four Views presents a dialogue between four main approaches to ethics in the Christian tradition. Virtue ethics focuses less on the action itself and more on the virtuous character of the moral agent. A divine command approach looks instead at whether an action has been commanded by God, in which case it is morally right. Natural law ethics argues for a universal, objective morality grounded in nature. Finally, prophetic ethics judges what is morally right in light of a biblical understanding of divine justice and shalom.

Steve Wilkens (PhD, Fuller Theological Seminary) is professor of philosophy and ethics at Azusa Pacific University. His books include Hidden Worldviews, Faith and Reason: Three Views, Christianity & Western Thought (volumes 2 and 3), and Beyond Bumper Sticker Ethics. He has also taught as an adjunct faculty member at Mount San Antonio College, Glendale Community College, Fuller Theological Seminary, and Azusa Pacific University's C. P. Haggard Graduate School of Theology.

Christian Spirituality: Five Views of Sanctification

  • Editor: Donald Alexander
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 1989
  • Pages: 204

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How can we grow closer to God? Is there a secret to spiritual life? Do we need a second blessing? Is sanctification God’s work or ours? Is it instantaneous or is it a process?

The nature of Christian spirituality has been widely debated throughout the history of the church. The doctrine of sanctification was one of the main fissures separating Luther from the Catholic Church. Even today different groups of Protestants disagree on how we draw closer to God. What distinguishes the different positions and what exactly is at stake in these recurring debates?

To answer these questions Donald L. Alexander, professor of biblical theology at Bethel College, has brought together five scholars that represent each of the main historical Protestant traditions. With an introduction by Alexander and responses to each of the main essays by the other contributors, this book provides a helpful and stimulating introduction to an important doctrine of the church.

Donald Alexander (PhD, University of California, Santa Barbara) is emeritus professor of Biblical Studies at Bethel University, St. Paul, MN. He served for ten years as a missionary at the Alliance Bible Seminary, Hong Kong, China. He is the author of The Pursuit of Godliness: Sanctification in Christological Perspective.

Church, State, and Public Justice

  • Editor: P.C. Kemeny
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2007
  • Pages: 254

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Abortion. Physician-assisted suicide. Same-sex marriages. Embryonic stem-cell research. Poverty. Crime. What is a faithful Christian response?

The God of the Bible is unquestionably a God of justice. Yet Christians have had their differences as to how human government and the church should bring about a just social order. Although Christians share many deep and significant theological convictions, differences that threaten to divide them have often surrounded the matter of how the church collectively and Christians individually ought to engage the public square.

What is the mission of the church? What is the purpose of human government? How ought they to be related to each other? How should social injustice be redressed? The five noted contributors to this volume answer these questions from within their distinctive Christian theological traditions, as well as responding to the other four positions. Through the presentations and ensuing dialog we come to see more clearly what the differences are, where their positions overlap and why they diverge.

Each contributor is well chosen and provides a concise and readable presentation, making the book an excellent introduction to the issues of church and state.

—Darrell Cole, Journal of Church and State, Autumn 2007

P.C. Kemeny (PhD, Princeton Theological Seminary; ThM, Duke University; MDiv, Westminster Seminary) is professor of religion and humanities at Grove City College in Grove City, Pennsylvania.

Divine Foreknowledge: Four Views

  • Editors: James K. Beilby and Paul R. Eddy
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2001
  • Pages: 221

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The question of the nature of God’s foreknowledge and how that relates to human freedom has been pondered and debated by Christian theologians at least since the time of Augustine. And the issue will not go away.

More recently, the terms of the debate have shifted, and the issue has taken on new urgency with the theological proposal known as the openness of God. This view maintains that God’s knowledge, while perfect, is limited regarding the future inasmuch as the future is “open” and not settled. Divine Foreknowledge: Four Views provides a venue for well-known proponents of four distinct views of divine foreknowledge to present their cases.

Gregory A. Boyd of Bethel College presents the open-theism view, David Hunt of Whittier College weighs in on the simple-foreknowledge view, William Lane Craig of Talbot School of Theology takes the middle-knowledge view, and Paul Helm of Regent College, Vancouver, presents the Augustinian-Calvinist view.

All four respond to each of the other essayists, noting points of agreement and disagreement. Editors James K. Beilby and Paul R. Eddy introduce the contemporary debate and also offer a conclusion that helps you evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of each view. The result is a unique opportunity to grapple with the issues and arguments and frame your own understanding of this important debate.

James K. Beilby (PhD, Marquette University) is professor of systematic and philosophical theology at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Paul R. Eddy (PhD, Marquette University) is Professor of Theology at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota. His books include John Hick’s Pluralist Philosophy of World Religions (Ashgate), Across the Spectrum: Understanding Issues in Evangelical Theology (with G.A. Boyd, Baker) and Divine Foreknowledge: Four Views (with James Beilby IVP).

Faith and Reason: Three Views

  • Editor: Steve Wilkens
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2014
  • Pages: 187

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Life confronts us with an endless stream of questions. Some are trivial. But some draw us into the deepest dimensions of human inquiry, a place where our decisions have profound implications for life and faith. Is there a God, and if so, how can I know anything about who or what God is? Is the quest for truth an elusive dream? How should I live and what should I value? What happens at the end of my biological existence?

These questions lead people of every creed and belief to consider important existential concepts. But many people wrestle with the relationship between faith and reason as they dig into the roots of this theological and philosophical pursuit. Does a shared interest in a common set of questions indicate that philosophy and theology are close kin and allies, or are they competitors vying for our souls, each requiring a loyalty that excludes the other?

In Faith and Reason, Steve Wilkens edits a debate between three different understandings of the relationship between faith and reason, between theology and philosophy. The first viewpoint, Faith and Philosophy in Tension, proposes faith and reason as hostile, exclusive opposites, each dangerous to the integrity of the other. The second, Faith Seeking Understanding, suggests that faithful Christians are called to make full use of their rational faculties to aid in the understanding and interpretation of what they believe by faith. In the third stance, Thomistic Synthesis, natural reason acts as a handmaiden to theology by actively pointing people toward salvation and deeper knowledge of spiritual truths.

Bringing together multiple views on the relationship between faith, philosophy and reason, this introduction to a timeless quandary will help you navigate, with rigor and joy, one of the most significant discussions of the Christian community.

The relationship between faith and reason, or between our philosophical assumptions and our theological ones, is a matter of fundamental importance. In this volume, three views on this topic are brought into dialogue with one another, giving readers an immediate sense of some of the key issues and objections that pertain to this perennial debate. It is a helpful resource and a useful way into questions of method in theology from which students are sure to benefit.

—Oliver D. Crisp, Professor of Systematic Theology, Fuller Theological Seminary

Both the richness and the complexity of the faith/reason problem is on full display in these essays—and in the responses. . . . The strengths of the individual essays and the conversational style will open up pathways of fresh insight, deepened understanding, and will stimulate continued dialogue on this important topic in classroom settings.

—Kyle A. Roberts, Word & World, Fall 2015

Steve Wilkens (PhD, Fuller Theological Seminary) is professor of philosophy and ethics at Azusa Pacific University. His books include Hidden Worldviews, Faith and Reason: Three Views, Christianity & Western Thought (volumes 2 and 3) and Beyond Bumper Sticker Ethics. He has also taught as an adjunct faculty member at Mount San Antonio College, Glendale Community College, Fuller Theological Seminary and Azusa Pacific University’s C.P. Haggard Graduate School of Theology.

God and Morality: Four Views

  • Editor: R. Keith Loftin
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2012
  • Pages: 181

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Is morality dependent upon belief in God? Is there more than one way for Christians to understand the nature of morality? Is there any agreement between Christians and atheists or agnostics on this heated issue?

In God and Morality: Four Views four distinguished voices in moral philosophy articulate and defend their place in the current debate between naturalism and theism. Christian philosophers Keith Yandell and Mark Linville and two self-identified atheist/agnostics, Evan Fales and Michael Ruse, clearly and honestly represent their differing views on the nature of morality.

Important differences as well as areas of overlap emerge as each contributor states their case, receives criticism from the others and responds. Of particular value for use as an academic text, these four essays and responses, covering the naturalist moral non-realist, naturalist moral realist, moral essentialist and moral particularist views, will foster critical thinking and contribute to the development of a well-informed position on this very important issue.

This is an intellectually stimulating book and a good overview of natural and supernatural theories of morality. . . . If one is desirous to become better acquainted with contemporary views, Christian or not, this is a good start.

—J. Brian Huffling, Christian Apologetics Journal, Spring 2014

R. Keith Loftin (PhD, University of Aberdeen) is assistant professor of humanities at The College at Southwestern in Fort Worth, Texas. He is the editor of God & Morality: Four Views (IVP, 2012).

God and the Problem of Evil: Five Views

  • Editors: Chad Meister and James K. Dew Jr.
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Pages: 199

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The problem of evil is a constant challenge to faith in God. How can we believe in a loving and powerful God given the existence of so much suffering in the world? Philosophers and theologians have addressed this problem countless times over the centuries. New explanations have been proposed in recent decades drawing on resources in Scripture, theology, philosophy, and science.

According to the classic position, associated especially with the Augustinian tradition, God permits evil and suffering as part of the grand narrative of divine providence to bring about the redemption of creation. Molinism modifies the classic view by adding God's middle knowledge to the picture, in which God has knowledge of what creatures would do in all possible worlds. Open theism rejects the determinism of the classic view in favor of an account of God as a risk-taker who does not know for sure what the future holds. Essential kenosis goes further in providing a comprehensive theodicy by arguing that God cannot control creatures and thus cannot unilaterally prevent evil. Skeptical theism rejects the attempt to provide a theodicy and instead argues that, if God exists, we should not expect to understand God's purposes.

How do we come to philosophical and theological grips with the vast amounts of evil in a world created by a perfectly good—indeed, maximally great—Being? God and the Problem of Evil helpfully lays out the various sides of the debate on this issue. Five philosophical theologians present the distinctive differences in their respective views, also noting the points on which they agree. The result is a volume that will serve as an excellent, up-to-date resource for those seeking to further explore this crucial—and perennial—question.

—Paul Copan, professor and Pledger Family Chair of Philosophy and Ethics, Palm Beach Atlantic University, author of A Little Book for New Philosophers

Chad Meister (PhD, Marquette University) is professor of philosophy and theology at Bethel College in Mishawaka, Indiana. His publications include Evil: A Guide for the Perplexed, Contemporary Philosophical Theology, The Oxford Handbook of Religious Diversity, and the six-volume work The History of Evil.

James K. Dew Jr. (PhD, Southeastern Baptist) is associate professor of the history of ideas and philosophy and dean of the College at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the coauthor (with Mark W. Foreman) of How Do We Know? An Introduction to Epistemology and coeditor (with Chad Meister) of God and Evil: The Case for God in a World Filled with Pain and God and the Problem of Evil: Five Views.

God and Time: Four Views

  • Editor: Gregory E. Ganssle
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2001
  • Pages: 247

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The eternal God has created the universe. And that universe is time-bound. How can we best understand God’s relationship with our time-bound universe? For example, does God experience each moment of time in succession or are all times present to God? How we think of God and time has implications for our understanding of the nature of time, the creation of the universe, God’s knowledge of the future, God’s interaction with his creation and the fullness of God’s life.

In this book, four notable philosophers skillfully take on this difficult topic--all writing from within a Christian framework yet contending for different views. Paul Helm argues that divine eternity should be construed as a state of absolute timelessness. Alan G. Padgett maintains that God’s eternity is more plausibly to be understood as relative timelessness. William Lane Craig presents a hybrid view that combines timelessness with omnitemporality. And Nicholas Wolterstorff advocates a doctrine of unqualified divine temporality.

Each essay is followed by responses from the other three contributors and a final counter-response from the original essayist, making for a lively exchange of ideas. Editor Gregory E. Ganssle provides a helpful introduction to the debate and its significance. Together these five scholars conduct readers on a stimulating and mind-stretching journey into one of the most controversial and challenging areas of theology today.

Ganssle has collected contributions from four leading scholars on the topic of God’s relationship to time. This collection is a much needed and well-executed project that will give substance to a variety of contemporary theological and philosophical discussions, including the debate about openness theology. Each of the views has been thoughtfully written, then critiqued by the other three contributors to give a balanced perspective to the reader. The authors have been careful in their handling of technical material so as not to overburden the novice without giving up on important issues that are under examination in the fields of philosophy and theology. Thus the book provides accessible discussions of options with a thorough enough coverage for a broad understanding of the topic. I highly recommend this text for anyone interested in God and time and, as the authors show, this pivotal issue must be addressed by anyone thinking seriously about the nature of God.

—David M. Woodruff, Department of Philosophy, Huntington College

God and Time: Four Views is an excellent introduction to the contemporary discussion of God’s relation to time--a discussion with significant implications for a number of important theological issues (the nature of divine providence, the Incarnation, God’s knowledge of the future and so on). In its pages four key participants in that discussion put their own views on the table in dialogue with one another. The result is a sophisticated but accessible primer on God and time.

—Douglas Blount, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary

This book brings together four outstanding philosophers who speak to the issue of God’s relationship to time in a way that is both lucid and widely accessible. It compares the traditional view of God as timeless with three subtly different versions of the view that God lives and interacts with us in time. It is to be hoped that Ganssle’s book will help to bring some clarity into the often confused discussions of this topic.

—William Hasker, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Huntington College, editor, Faith and Philosophy

Gregory E. Ganssle serves with the Rivendell Institute for Christian Thought and Learning, a special project of the Campus Crusade for Christ student ministry at Yale University. He has taught philosophy at Syracuse University and has worked as a teaching fellow and part-time lecturer in the philosophy department at Yale University.

Predestination and Free Will: Four Views of Divine Sovereignty and Human Freedom

  • Editors: David Basinger and Randall Basinger
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 1986
  • Pages: 180

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If God is in control, are people really free? This question has bothered Christians for centuries. And answers have covered a wide spectrum. Today Christians still disagree. Those who emphasize human freedom view it as a reflection of God’s self-limited power. Others look at human freedom in the order of God’s overall control.

David and Randall Basinger have put this age-old question to four scholars trained in theology and philosophy. John Feinberg of Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and Norman Geisler of Dallas Theological Seminary focus on God’s specific sovereignty. Bruce Reichenbach of Augsburg College and Clark Pinnock of McMaster Divinity College insist that God must limit his control to ensure our freedom. Each writer argues for his perspective and applies his theory to two practical case studies. Then the other writers respond to each of the major essays, exposing what they see as fallacies and hidden assumptions.

David Basinger is professor of philosophy and ethics at Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, New York. He is the author of Divine Power in Process Theism (SUNY) and joint author of the books Reason and Religious Belief: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Religion (Oxford) and Religious Diversity: A Philosophical Assessment (Ashgate).

Randall Basinger is currently dean of curriculum at Messiah College in Grantham, Pennsylvania. Among his published work is the essay “Faith/Reason Typologies: A Constructive Proposal,” in Christian Scholar’s Review (1997).

Psychology and Christianity: Five Views

  • Editor: Eric L. Johnson
  • Edition: Second Edition
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Pages: 320

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How are Christians to understand and undertake the discipline of psychology? This question has been of keen interest (and sometimes concern) to Christians because of the importance we place on a correct understanding of human nature. Psychology can sometimes seem disconnected from, if not antithetical to, Christian perspectives on life. How are we to understand our Christian beliefs about persons in relation to secular psychological beliefs?

This revised edition of a widely appreciated text now presents five models for understanding the relationship between psychology and Christianity. All the essays and responses have been reworked and updated with some new contributors including the addition of a new perspective, the transformative view from John Coe and Todd Hall (Biola University).

Also found here is David Powlison (Westminster Theological Seminary) who offers the biblical counseling model. The levels-of-explanation model is advanced by David G. Myers (Hope College), while Stanton L. Jones (Wheaton College) offers an entirely new chapter presenting the integration model. The Christian psychology model is put forth by Robert C. Roberts (Baylor University) now joined by Paul J. Watson (University of Tennesee, Chattanooga).

Each of the contributors responds to the other essayists, noting points of agreement as well as problems they see. Eric L. Johnson provides a revised introduction that describes the history of Christians and psychology, as well as a conclusion that considers what might unite the five views and how a reader might evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of each view.

Eric L. Johnson (PhD, Michigan State University) is trained as an academic psychologist and is Lawrence and Charlotte Hoover Professor of Pastoral Care at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. He is coeditor of God Under Fire and the author of Foundations for Soul Care. He is an associate editor of the Journal of Psychology and Theology, the Journal of Psychology and Christianity, and the Journal of Spiritual Formation and Soul Care, and he is the director of the Society for Christian Psychology.

Science and Christianity: Four Views

  • Editor: Richard F. Carlson
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2000
  • Pages: 276

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Science and Christianity. Are they partners or opponents?

Christians have long debated the relationship of science to faith. With the rise of Darwinism, however, the issue took on new significance. Darwinism appeared to undermine the authority of the Bible and the credibility of Christianity by freeing science of the need for a Creator. Rethinking the relationship between science and Christianity quickly became a priority.

  • How does a faithful Christian respond to the pronouncements of contemporary science?
  • Is science a help or a hindrance to belief?
  • Are science and the Bible in conflict?

At the beginning of the twenty-first century, Christians continue to wonder whether faith and science are partners or opponents. In this book six Christian scholars sort through the issues as they present four different views on the relationship of science and Christianity. These include Wayne Frair and Gary D. Patterson for “creationism,” Jean Pond for “independence,” Stephen C. Meyer for “qualified agreement” and Howard J. Van Till for “partnership.” Each contributor responds to the other scholars, noting points of agreement and disagreement. Editor Richard F. Carlson offers an introduction to this contemporary debate as well as a postscript to help us evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each view.

Richard F. Carlson is research professor of physics at the University of Redlands in Redlands, California and formerly a visiting scientist in the department of radiation sciences at Uppsala University, Sweden. He received a BS (University of Redlands), MS and PhD (University of Minnesota) in physics, and an MA (Fuller Theological Seminary) in biblical studies and theology.

The Lord’s Supper: Five Views

  • Editor: Gordon T. Smith
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Pages: 159

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Lord’s Supper. Eucharist. Communion. Sacrament. Ordinance.

While it’s the meal that should unite us as followers of Christ, it sometimes appears we can’t even agree on what to call it, let alone how we might share a common theological view of its significance. Even if we cannot reach full agreement, how can we better understand one another and this central observance of the Christian faith?

Gordon Smith has invited five representatives of differing views within Christian tradition. Each holds his or her views with conviction and makes the case for that tradition. Each responds to the other views with charity, highlighting significant areas of agreement and disagreement.

Gordon T. Smith (PhD, Loyola School of Theology, Ateneo de Manila University) is the president of Ambrose University and Seminary in Calgary, Alberta, where he also serves as professor of systematic and spiritual theology. He is an ordained minister with the Christian and Missionary Alliance and a teaching fellow at Regent College, Vancouver, BC. He is the author of many books, including Courage and Calling, Called to Be Saints and The Voice of Jesus.

The Meaning of the Millennium: Four Views

  • Editor: Robert G. Clouse
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 1977
  • Pages: 224

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Since the first century, Christians have agreed that Christ will return. But since that time there have also been many disagreements. How will Christ return? When will he return? What sort of kingdom will he establish? What is the meaning of the millennium? These questions persist today.

Four major views on the millennium have had both a long history and a host of Christian adherents. In this book Robert G. Clouse brings together proponents of each view: George Eldon Ladd on historic premillenniallism, Herman A. Hoyt on dispensational premillennialism, Loraine Boettner on post-millennialism and Anthony A. Hoekema on amillennialism.

After each view is presented, proponents of the three competing views respond from their own perspectives. Here you’ll encounter a lively and productive debate among respected Christian scholars that will help you gain clearer and deeper understanding of the different ways the church approaches the meaning of the millennium.

This work is an excellent introduction to the discussion as well as a pointer to additional works on the subject.

TSF Bulletin

A stimulated debate and an excellent learning tool . . . . The book opens a fresh and fruitful dialogue.

Southwestern Journal of Theology

Congratulations to IV Press and to editor Clouse for bringing together the most adequate dialog yet, on the divergent eschatological understandings found in modern evangelicalism.

Prebyterian Covenant Seminary Review

Robert G. Clouse (PhD, University of Iowa) is professor emeritus of history at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana. He is also an ordained Brethren minister and has served churches in Iowa and Indiana.

The Nature of the Atonement: Four Views

  • Editors: James K. Beilby and Paul R. Eddy
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2006
  • Pages: 208

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A long history of biblical exegesis and theological reflection has shaped our understanding of the atonement today. The more prominent highlights of this history have acquired familiar names for the household of faith: Christus Victor, penal substitutionary, subjective, and governmental. Recently the penal substitutionary view, and particularly its misappropriations, has been critiqued, and a lively debate has taken hold within evangelicalism. This book offers a “panel” discussion of four views of atonement maintained by four evangelical scholars.

Following an introduction written by the editors, each participant first puts forth the case for their view. Each view is followed by responses from the other three participants, noting points of agreement as well as disagreement. This is a book that will help Christians understand the issues, grasp the differences and proceed toward a clearer articulation of their understanding of the atonement.

The directness of the responses is a strength of the book. It serves to highlight differences, expose weak points, and provide the reader with questions and issues to pursue. The book makes a positive contribution both through highlighting the diversity of thinking about the atonement within evangelicalism and through encouraging discussion about this diversity.

—Mark D. Baker, Religious Studies Review, March 2010

Those looking for evangelical and scripturally founded treatments of the atonement will find this book a lively register of current opinions.

Journal for the Study of the New Testament, 2007

There are a number of reasons to applaud The Nature of the Atonement, not least its provocative and illuminating presentation. . . . If you are looking for a more focused discussion on the atonement--that is, in terms of today’s evangelical milieu, The Nature of the Atonement can certainly serve as a fine forum for exploring essential matters of the Christian faith.

—Kathleen Borres, Catholic Books Review

James K. Beilby (PhD, Marquette University) is professor of systematic and philosophical theology at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Paul R. Eddy (PhD, Marquette University) is Professor of Theology at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota. His books include John Hick’s Pluralist Philosophy of World Religions (Ashgate), Across the Spectrum: Understanding Issues in Evangelical Theology (with G. A. Boyd, Baker) and Divine Foreknowledge: Four Views (with James Beilby IVP).

Two Views of Hell: A Biblical and Theological Dialogue

  • Authors: Edward William Fudge and Robert A. Peterson
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2000
  • Pages: 228

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Some evangelicals believe the wicked will experience perpetual, conscious torment after death. Others argue that the wicked will experience a limited period of conscious punishment and then they will cease to exist. In this book you will find an irenic yet frank debate between two evangelical theologians who present strong scriptural and theological evidence for and against each view. Both make a case that their view is more consistent with Scripture and with the holy and just nature of a loving God.

Robert Peterson defends the traditional view that those who do not have faith in Christ will suffer eternally in hell. Edward Fudge advocates the conditionalist perspective that after a period of suffering, the unfaithful will experience a complete extinguishing, or annihilation, of existence. In addition, each author presents a rebuttal to the viewpoint of the other.

Here is a dialogue that will inform and challenge those on both sides, while impressing on all the need for faithful proclamation of the gospel of deliverance from sin and death.

The book is much needed. The debate over the nature of hell shows no sign of going away, and this book gives a good and thorough presentation of both sides in just over two hundred pages. I hope it receives a wide and careful reading.

Faith & Mission

Fudge and Peterson . . . have produced a clear and readable account of the biblical grounds for their positions. Fudge’s interpretations of the scriptural data is plausible as is Peterson’s and neither can dismiss the other by claiming that Scripture clearly supports their view. This book serves well the purpose of laying out the exegetical grounds for both sides.

Philosophia Christi

A very worthwhile book, especially since it gives both sides of the argument. This gives the book a fairness that should be appreciated.

Reformed Review

Edward William Fudge is a theologian and practicing lawyer based in Texas. He is the author of The Fire That Consumes: A Biblical and Historical Study of the Doctrine of Final Punishment.

Robert A. Peterson (PhD, Drew University) is professor of systematic theology at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri. He was formerly professor of New Testament and theology at Biblical Theological Seminary in Hatfield, Pennsylvania.

What About Those Who Have Never Heard?: Three Views on the Destiny of the Unevangelized

  • Editor: Gabriel Fackre, Ronald H. Nash and John Sanders
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 1995
  • Pages: 168

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

What is the fate of those who die never hearing the gospel? Do Hindus, Jews, agnostics and others who do not profess faith in Christ really suffer damnation after death? These and similar questions have long been contemplated by people from every religious persuasion and every walk of life. But in a culture of increasing diversity and growing doubt in the existence of “objective truth,” it seems ever more pressing.

In this book three scholars present the span of evangelical conviction on the destiny of the unevangelized. Ronald Nash argues the restrictivist position, that receptive knowledge of Jesus Christ in this life is necessary to salvation. Gabriel Fackre advocates divine perseverance, with the expectation that those who die unevangelized receive an opportunity for salvation after death. And John Sanders sets forth the inclusivist case--asserting that though God saves people only through the work of Jesus Christ, some may be saved even if they do not know about Christ.

As each scholar presents his own case and responds to strengths and weaknesses of differing positions, readers are treated to a lively and informative debate. What About Those Who Have Never Heard? is a truly helpful book on one of today’s - and every day’s - most crucial questions.

Gabriel Fackreis Samuel Abbot Professor of Christian Theology Emeritus at Andover Newton Theological School in Newton Centre, Massachusetts. He is the author of The Christian Story.

Ronald H. Nash (1936-2006) served as a professor of religion and philosophy for many years, teaching at Western Kentucky University, Reformed Theological Seminary and The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. His many books include The Gospel and the Greeks, Life’s Ultimate Questions and Is Jesus the Only Savior?

John Sanders (Th.D., University of South Africa) is professor of religion at Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas. He has edited and written several books, including No Other Name: An Investigation into the Destiny of the Unevangelized. Three of his previous book projects have received a Christianity Today Book Award.

Women in Ministry: Four Views

  • Editor: Bonnidell Clouse and Robert G. Clouse
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 1989
  • Pages: 250

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

Should women teach men? Should they exercise authority over men? What about ordaining women? Even those who agree that Scripture must determine our answers do not agree on what it teaches. And too often differing sides have not been willing to listen to one another. Here in one volume are the views of four deeply committed evangelicals that focus the discussion on the issues.

Robert Culver argues for what might be called the traditional view that women should not exercise authority over or teach men. Susan Foh suggests a modified view which would allow for women to teach but not to hold positions of authority. Walter Liefeld presents a case for plural ministry that questions ordination as a means of conferring authority. Alvera Mickelsen defends the full equality of men and women in the church. What makes this book especially helpful is that the writers all respond to the other essays, pointing out weaknesses and hidden assumptions.

Bonnidell Clouse is professor of history at Indiana State University and has served as president of the Central Renaissance Conference.

Robert G. Clouse (PhD, University of Iowa) is professor emeritus of history at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana. He is also an ordained Brethren minister and has served churches in Iowa and Indiana.

The Historical Jesus: Five Views

  • Editors: James K. Beilby and Paul R. Eddy
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Pages: 312

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

Toward the end of the Enlightenment, a fascination with providing a historical account of the life of Jesus arose among academics. This fascination remains alive and well today. Scholars have identified three separate “quests” for the historical Jesus, with the third beginning in the 1990s and continuing today. Adding to this academic effort now comes The Historical Jesus: Five Views, from some of the most prominent Jesus scholars of our day. After a scene-setting introduction by the editors that establishes a helpful context for the arguments to come, prominent figures in the Jesus quest set forth their positions and respond to their fellow scholars.

A healthy range of views are presented throughout the book, giving readers a comprehensive taste of this long-standing debate, situated within its proper context. On one end Robert M. Price lucidly maintains that the probability of Jesus' existence has reached the “vanishing point,” while on the other, Darrell Bock ably argues that while critical method yields only a “gist” of Jesus, it does in fact take us in the direction of the Gospel portraits. And between these two extremes are numerous avenues to explore, questions to ask, and “assured results” to weigh. Scholars John Dominic Crossan, Luke Timothy Johnson, and James D. G. Dunn probe these issues with formidable knowledge and insight, filling out a further range of options.

Beilby and Eddy, along with their authors, are to be commended for a job well done. I thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend this book.

Robert B. Stewart, director, Greer-Heard Point-Counterpoint Forum in Faith and Culture, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary

James K. Beilby and Paul Rhodes Eddy succeed not only in identifying the major trends, but also in bringing to the surface some of the assumptions in current historical Jesus research. They offer a sympathetic review of some of the major exponents of Jesus research from Reimarus up to the present day.

Pieter F. Craffert, profesor of New Testament and Early Christian Studies, University of South Africa

The Historical Jesus is a worthwhile addition to your library if you are a scholar, pastor, or layperson with particular interest in the intersection of the Jesus of history with the Christ of Christian faith.

—Tawa J. Anderson, assistant professor of philosophy, Oklahoma Baptist University

Paul Rhodes Eddy is professor of theology at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota. His books include John Hick's Pluralist Philosophy of World Religions, Across the Spectrum: Understanding Issues in Evangelical Theology , and Divine Foreknowledge: Four Views.

James K. Beilby is professor of systematic and philosophical theology at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota. His books include Why Bother With Truth?, The Meaning of the Atonement: Four Views, Naturalism Defeated?, and For Faith and Clarity. His articles and essays have appeared in such publications as Faith and Philosophy, Philosophia Christi, International Journal for Philosophy of Religion, and Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society.

Justification: Five Views

  • Editors: James K. Beilby and Paul R. Eddy
  • Associate Editor: Steven E. Enderlein
  • Publisher: IVP Academic
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Pages: 320

“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1). When Paul wrote these words he seemed confident he had made himself clear. But for centuries the Pauline doctrine of justification has been a classic point of interpretation and debate in Christian exegesis and theology. And while in recent decades there have been moments of hopeful convergence among the various traditions of the Western church, the fine print often reveals more facets and distinctions than ever before.

This volume focuses on five views of justification and calls on representative proponents to set forth their case and then respond to each other. The five views are:

  • Traditional Reformed (Michael S. Horton)
  • Progressive Reformed (Michael F. Bird)
  • New Perspective (James D. G. Dunn)
  • Deification, or Theosis (Veli-Matti Kärkkäinen)
  • Roman Catholic (Gerald O’Collins and Oliver Rafferty)

In addition, editors James Beilby, Paul R. Eddy, and Steven E. Enderlein provide an extensive introduction to the issues informing this important debate. This distinguished forum of biblical interpreters and theologians offers a lively and informative engagement with the biblical, historical and contemporary understandings of justification. Justification: Five Views is not only a fascinating probe into Paul’s meaning, it’s also a case book in theological method.

A wonderfully useful book. After a superb historical survey of the issues to be debated, five influential approaches to the doctrine of justification by faith are presented and defended by credible and engaging representatives. I can think of no better introduction to these important debates than this outstanding volume.

Alister E. McGrath, professor of theology, ministry, and education, King’s College, London

No single volume could possibly cover all Christian views of the doctrine of justification. Justification: Five Views courageously selects five contemporary views and helpfully presents and critiques them. Each view is expounded and defended by a leading proponent and then critiqued by other contributors. Anyone interested in the current discussion about this crucial Christian doctrine must read this book. It sheds more light than heat in an area of theology almost burned over by heated polemics. Of all the ‘views’ books out there, this is one of the best.

Roger E. Olson, professor of theology, George W. Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University

Beilby and Eddy have raised the bar with regard to this multiple views genre, this time bringing together world-renowned scholars and theologians to engage a very hot topic. Reading Justification: Five Views is like being treated to five books by five masters of their craft, each going deep into the details at times but yet also stepping back to cover the forest ably enough for the less initiated to appreciate what is at stake. A must-read for those interested in the ecumenical implications of the doctrine of justification.

Amos Yong, J. Rodman Williams Professor of Theology, Regent University School of Divinity

Of all the multiple views books, this one was needed most. It is also perhaps the best yet: getting Horton, Dunn, Bird, Kärkkäinen, O’Collins, and Rafferty all at the table at the same time under the same roof is both a tour de force and a brilliant example of how their interaction can teach each of us. One word is needed most for the justification debate at work among (mostly) evangelicals, the word listen, and if you listen to the pages of this book you will see examples of not listening and listening. The challenge remains for all of us: will we listen again to the Scriptures to hear what it says about justification? Or will we impose our systems of thought on the Bible?

Scot McKnight, professor of religious studies, North Park University

James K. Beilby (PhD, Marquette University) is professor of systematic and philosophical theology at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Paul R. Eddy (PhD, Marquette University) is professor of theology at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Steven E. Enderlein is associate professor of biblical studies at Bethel University.


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