On My Desk (new books for review)

On My Desk (new books for review) September 3, 2010

Well….it has been a long journey this summer from finishing up my one-year appointment in Ohio to moving to Seattle and (just today) completing orientation here at Seattle Pacific University. I have, thus, had very little time for blogging, in part because my mind and hands have been occupied with transporting boxes.

(sigh) I am finally situated in my new office in Alexander Hall. I have shelved all of my books and I am delighted to resume working through the review books I have.

The one that I am most eager to get working on is Robert W. Jenson’s new Canon and Creed (WJK, 2010) in the Interpretation “Resources for the Use of Scripture in the Church” series. What a wonderful idea to have this series that serves academy and church!

I previously worked through Patrick Miller’s outstanding volume on the Ten Commandments – an imposing but satisfying 400+ pages. Possibly more than any book I have read in the last few years, I found myself thinking “Yes, yes, yes!” repeatedly throughout my time reading Miller’s book.

So, I had to acquire Jenson’s intriguing piece on the relationship between Scripture and the traditions and creeds of the church. I was a bit surprised to find that it is a slim 120-some pages.

I have only read the introduction thus far, and I will certainly give a deeper analysis in due time, but Jenson strikes me as someone who has the “big picture” of God and history in mind and is ready with a powerful message for the modern church. In some circles “ecumenical” is a dirty word. Here Jenson (I presume) will teach us how the balance of Scripture and canon prevents the church from falling apart and falling away; from giving in to the centrifugal force of today’s world that fragments and compartmentalizes rather than unites and connects.

After the introduction the chapters are broken down as follows:

1. “Canon” and “Creed”

2. Israel’s Scripture

3. Creed and the OT

4. NT Canon and Regula Fidei

5. The Apostle’s Creed

6. The Canonical Text

7. Dogma

8. Episcopacy

9. The Creed as Critical Theory for Scripture

10. Genesis 1:1-5 and the Creed

11. Luke 1:26-38 and the Creed

12. Mark 14:35-6 and Dogma

Does that look fascinating? Well, much, much more to come…

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