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A Model for Evangelical Theology: Integrating Scripture, Tradition, Reason, Experience, and Community

ISBN: 9781540960351
  • Format:Digital



Written by a skilled theologian with over two decades of classroom experience, this introduction to evangelical theology explains how connecting to five sources of Christian theology—Scripture, tradition, reason, experience, and community—leads to a richer and deeper understanding of the faith. Graham McFarlane calls this the “evangelical quintilateral,” which he recommends as a helpful rubric for teaching theology. This integrative model introduces students to the sources, themes, tasks, and goals of evangelical theology, making the book ideal for introductory theology courses.

Resource Experts
  • Explores the five sources of Christian theology
  • Explains how connecting to five sources of Christian theology leads to a richer and deeper understanding of the faith
  • Introduces readers to the sources, themes, tasks, and goals of evangelical theology
  • Introduction: Theology and Its Method
  • Scripture
  • Tradition
  • Reason
  • Experience
  • Community
  • Conclusion
  • Title: A Model for Evangelical Theology: Integrating Scripture, Tradition, Reason, Experience, and Community
  • Author: Graham McFarlane
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Pages: 320
  • Resource Type: Introduction
  • Topic: Theology

In the Logos edition, this volume is 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.

Graham McFarlane (PhD, King’s College, London) is senior lecturer in systematic theology and director of research at the London School of Theology in London, England. His books include Why Do You Believe What You Believe about the Holy Spirit? and Why Do You Believe What You Believe about Jesus?


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  1. Michael Berra

    Michael Berra


    Conclusion: A solid proposal of an integrated theological method connecting simple faith with academic rigor that is relationally permeated. Graham McFarlane has been teaching theology in the classroom for more than two decades and has supervised a bulk-load of research students. I am one of them (and gladly so). Since he is my doctoral supervisor and I have never had the privilege to sit in his classroom I was eagerly awaiting this volume to get to know his accumulated wisdom in a more systematic way. First of all, I like the overall aim of the book that is readily summarised in the subtitle: integrating scripture, tradition, reason, experience and community. McFarlane proposes an integrated theological method that attempts to be specifically evangelical (sadly, he defines evangelical only rudimentary despite the current heated debates circling this term. Since it is part of the title and as such important, he could have done with a more thorough treatment), meaning that scripture is not simply one principle among the others but the foundation for everything else. To me, this integrated view (as a whole) is the main contribution of the book and consequently I found Part One and the final conclusion most illuminating (even more so than Part Two). The following quote summarises best: The task of academic theology will always be to question faithfully, discern prayerfully, recognize corporately, codify critically, & communicate clearly God’s self-disclosure in such a way that its meaning is clear for human life, in thought and praxis. (58) This leads to the second thing I like: with McFarlane’s approach the church and the academia come closer (which I believe is also his intention with a very accessible writing-style). He makes sure that it is clear that every Christian is a theologian whenever he reflects the Faith and that the academic theologian does the same only with a more rigorous methodology. With this view, to “do theology” has a lot to do with actually living the Christian life which is one of the major points of integration and of utmost importance for the academy. Furthermore, I like McFarlane’s relational theology. Neither the title nor the contents-page suggest that this is a very relational proposal but it is. Relationality permeates the whole fabric of the book rather than being up-front. This might appear odd since McFarlane is a relational theologian through and through and I would have suspected to find this leitmotif more explicitly. However, the fifth area of integration, community, which is the one that makes this proposal a unique quintilateral rather than the classic quadrilateral, points specifically in this direction. Nonetheless, although I like the subversive relational tone of the book, I believe that his proposal could have gained more momentum with a more radical and consequential leitmotif of relationship. Finally, the book’s setup might appear quite unique for an academic work (I consider it such). Time and again there are little grey boxes (“Pause”) with recommendations to reflect on the content. Interestingly, I like the idea very much since it breathes the spirit of the proposal that it is not just about theory, reason, knowledge, but that theology is very personal and must be birthed within ones own life. Above all, I recommend the book since its author actually lives what he teaches and strives to integrate all five dimensions into his own live and theological existence in even more comprehensive ways . Thank you, Graham.