The Forgotten Insight

The Difference between a Theologian of the Cross and a Theologian of Glory Carl Trueman: One of the things that is so striking about the current revival of interest in Reformation theology, broadly conceived, is the absence of perhaps the most glorious contribution of Martin Luther to theological discourse: the notion of the theologian of the cross. At a meeting of the Saxon Chapter of the Augustinian Order in the city of Heidelberg in 1518, a monk called Leonhard Beier presented a series of theses which Luther had prepared, whilst Dr Martin himself presided over the proceedings.  The Heidelberg Disputation was to go down in history as the moment when Luther showcased his radical new theology for the first time. At the heart of this new theology was the notion that God reveals himself under his opposite; or, to express this another way, God achieves his intended purposes by doing the exact opposite of that which humans might expect.  The

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Navigating Worlds

James Eglinton: In the West today, many of the great questions faced by Christians deal with our place in a culture that was molded by Christianity, but that has now rejected it—not merely in a passive sort of indifference, but in an active effort to undo the faith’s historic formative influence on our world. This is the context in which a constellation of homegrown “cultural Christians” has gained such influence. In The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self, Carl Trueman helps us understand their rise to prominence. He does so by bringing the work of Philip Rieff, the outstanding Jewish sociologist, to the table. Rieff argued that the history of the West is the history of three worlds. The first was a supernaturally charged, pre-Christian pagan world in which life and death were governed by fate. This gave way to a second world reshaped by Jewish and Christian thought, able to advance scientific knowledge and social order, looking to expand on the basis of

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