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Theology without Borders: An Introduction to Global Conversations

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The nature of Christianity is changing and the church is growing rapidly outside the West. However, there is no consensus as to what this means for formulating a corresponding theology. Theology without Borders argues that the current demographics of Christianity demand that theology become a comparative exercise with voices from different settings learning from one another. Authors William A. Dyrness and Oscar García-Johnson describe many inevitable challenges coming with this practice.

This concise introduction examines the emerging global discussion in theology by modeling this discussion from two different perspectives. It integrates Western theological tradition with emerging global perspectives, exploring the major issues involved in rethinking theology in light of the explosion of world Christianity. Dyrness and García-Johnson envision a constructive integration of traditional and postcolonial theologies, underlining the contributions from the Global South. Theology without Borders is of interest to theology and missiology professors and students as well as church leaders and readers interested in the changing face of world Christianity.

Interested in a focus on the global Church? Also see the Lexham Theological Wordbook.

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Key Features

  • Examines the church’s shift to the global South and East
  • Provides multiple perspectives and a helpful method for theologizing
  • Discusses the heritage of the West


  • Transoccidentalism and the Making of Global Theology
  • Doing Theology out of a Western Heritage: Gains and Losses
  • The Role of Indigenous Traditions in the Context of Christian Theology
  • God, Creation, and the Human Community
  • Jesus Christ and the Good News for the World
  • The Church in Global Context
  • The Christian Hope: Eschatology in Global Perspective

Praise for the Print Edition

The most important theological development in the latter-twentieth century was the birth of contextual theologies reflecting various cultures, social conditions, and ways of experiencing the gospel. The great task of this century will be to promote a faithful dialogue among these theologies. The present book is a significant contribution, pointing and opening the way for this task.

Justo L. Gonzalez, author of A History of Christian Thought

Theology without Borders demonstrates brilliantly how theologians’ contexts shape both the form and content of their theologies. The book is an important contribution to discourse on the necessity of a cross-contextual mindset for constructing theology in this era of global Christianity.

Victor I. Ezigbo, chair of biblical and theological studies, Bethel University

This cowritten volume is a valuable and catalytic resource for the pursuit and practice of a deeply faithful Christianity in a world of great cultural diversity.

Vincent Bacote, associate professor of theology, Wheaton College

About the Authors

William A. Dyrness is dean emeritus and professor of theology and culture at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California, and is the author of several books, including How Does America Hear the Gospel and Visual Faith: Art, Theology, and Worship in Dialogue.

Oscar García-Johnson is associate dean of the Center for the Study of Hispanic Church and Community at Fuller Theological Seminary, where he also serves as associate professor of theology and Latino/a studies. He is the author of The Mestizo/a Community of the Spirit: A Latino/a Postmodern Ecclesiology and other writings from the Global South.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition


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  1. Felmar Roel Rap. Singco
    The Gospel of the LORD Jesus Christ and its preaching to all the cultures of the world results in two things: the elevation and enhancement of the good and righteous qualities of these cultures (for example: Chinese calligraphy, Indian familial bonds, Nordic explorations, &c.), and, at the same time, the elimination and eradication of the evil and corrupt qualities of these cultures (Chinese polygamy, the Indian caste system, Nordic paganism, &c.). In the formulation of a theology with out borders, Christian theologians ought to be care full in considering some aspects of some cultures that are inherently anti thetical to the Gospel of the LORD, such as female genital mutilation, cannibalism, "honour" child sacrifices, suicide traditions (such as in the Japanese samurai traditions of seppuku or hara kiri), nudism in some cultures, and others. When Saint Paul wrote to the Christian slave master Philemon about his Christian slave Onesimus, he in that Epistle impliedly preached the abolition of human slavery in Christian house holds, and so preached to all succeeding generations of Christians that human slavery has no place in Christianity. But we well come a confluence of world cultures and world philosophies conversing with Christian theology and philosophy, be cause it will truely result in the renaissance of world studies in Christianity, divinity, philosophy, and theology, all thought disciplines that will benefit much all of humanity.