Most historical theology texts follow Christian beliefs chronologically, discussing notable doctrinal developments for all areas of theology according to their historical appearance. And while this may be good history, it can make for confusing theology, with the classic theological loci scattered throughout various time periods, movements, and controversies.
In Historical Theology, Gregg Allison offers students the opportunity to study the historical development of theology according to a topical-chronological arrangement, setting out the history of Christian doctrine one theological element at a time. Such an approach allows readers to concentrate on one tenet of Christianity and its formulation in the early church, through the Middle Ages, Reformation, and post-Reformation era, and into the modern period. The text includes a generous mix of primary source material as well, citing the words of Cyprian, Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, Barth, and others. Allison references the most accessible editions of these notable theologians’ work so that readers can continue their study of historical theology through Christian history’s most important contributors. Historical Theology is a superb resource for those familiar with Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology or interested in understanding the development of Christian theology.
“Historical theology is the study of the interpretation of Scripture and the formulation of doctrine by the church of the past.” (Page 23)
“A second benefit of historical theology is that it provides sound biblical interpretations and theological formulations.” (Page 24)
“A third benefit of historical theology is that it presents stellar examples of faith, love, courage, hope, obedience, and mercy.” (Page 25)
“A fifth benefit of historical theology is that it not only helps the church understand the historical development of its beliefs, but enables it to express those beliefs in contemporary form.” (Page 27)
“A seventh benefit of historical theology is that it gives the church hope by providing assurance that Jesus is fulfilling his promise to his people.” (Page 28)
Scripture references are linked directly to Greek and Hebrew texts, along with the English Bible translations of your choice. For any word in any language, you can double-click on that word and your digital library will automatically search your lexicons for a match. That gives you unprecedented access to linguistic data, along with all the tools you need for exegesis and interpretation.