Insider Outsider: My Journey as a Stranger in White Evangelicalism and My Hope for Us All, by Bryan Loritts (M.A. ’98, Biola trustee), Zondervan, October 2018. God boldly proclaims throughout the book of Acts, “There is no ethnic home team when it comes to Christianity.” But the minority experience in America today — and throughout history — too often tells a different story. When Pastor Bryan Loritts wrote an op-ed piece in Christianity Today about this “evangelical gentrification” in the American church, he received an overwhelming response of more than one million views and sparked a provocative national conversation. In Insider Outsider, he dives deeper into what it’s like to be a person of color in predominantly white evangelical spaces today and where we go from here.
Until Christ is Formed in You: Dallas Willard and Spiritual Formation, edited by Steven L. Porter (professor of philosophy and theology, ’92, M.A. ’95), Gary W. Moon and J.P. Moreland (distinguished professor of philosophy), Abilene Christian University Press, June 2018. At a popular level, Dallas Willard wrote with remarkable clarity about spiritual formation. But his writings also addressed academic concerns such as shifts in modern moral philosophy, the nature of education and the psychology of the human self. Until Christ Is Formed in You brings together 10 authors who knew Willard well to introduce his wide-ranging vision and consider again the overall significance of this one-of-a-kind teacher. The collection explores topics including the Beatitudes, discipleship and more.
Bloodless Atonement?: A Theological and Exegetical Study of the Last Supper Sayings, by Benjamin J. Burkholder (M.Div. ’08, Th.M. ’09), Pickwick, June 2017. Does the Messiah have to die to pay for his people's sins? Is the cross of Jesus an atoning sacrifice? In recent years, theologians have questioned whether the understanding of the atonement that has been handed down to us by Anselm, Calvin and Luther accurately conveys the gospel. In passages about the Last Supper, Jesus draws on the Passover symbols of bread and wine in order to explain the meaning of his death to his closest followers. In light of the theological implications embedded in these densely packed sayings, a theology of atonement rooted in the Gospels is adopted over contemporary assertions that are antithetical to the Gospels.
God of Tomorrow: How to Overcome the Fears of Today and Renew Your Hope for the Future, by Caleb Kaltenbach (M.A. ’07), WaterBrook, May 2018. Kaltenbach challenges the church to choose the path of hope in response to polarizing cultural issues. Divergent politics, immigration issues, bullying, racism, terrorism, new ways of categorizing people and multiple other issues are negatively impacting our communities today. Some feel the country we live in now isn’t the same one they lived in 20 years ago. Culture is constantly changing, and many Christians are nervous about what tomorrow will bring. However, we don’t need to worry, because we serve the God of tomorrow. The book includes discussion questions, providing a platform for small groups to dialogue about these culturally relevant topics.
Leaving Mormonism: Why Four Scholars Changed their Minds, co-edited by Corey Miller (M.A. ’01), Kregel, November 2017. The growing popular perception today is that the Mormon church is just another denomination within Christianity, and representatives of the LDS church often encourage this perspective. In this volume, four former Mormons share their stories of growing up in the Mormon church, and detail how biblical, theological, moral or scientific issues forced them to eventually leave Mormonism. The contributors, each of who are now accomplished scholars, draw on the expertise of their respective academic fields to show how Mormon teachings and practice fall short biblically and rationally. They also address common objections raised by former Mormons who have lost faith altogether.
Scientism and Secularism: Learning to Respond to a Dangerous Ideology, by J.P. Moreland (distinguished professor of philosophy), Crossway, September 2018. This book is the first of its kind that takes on the dangerous ideology of scientism. Christianity claims that its central teachings can be known to be true rather than accepted by blind faith. But the pervasive presence of scientism in Western culture asserts that the only knowledge of reality comes from the hard sciences; theological and ethical claims are expressions of blind faith and private emotions. By understanding the nature and complete irrationality of the contemporary Western church’s primary enemy — scientism — one’s confidence in biblical Christianity will be strengthened, one’s witness will be emboldened and unbelievers will have to take Christianity seriously.