Is ‘newer’ really ‘better’? We often assume so, but if we do treat the past as inferior we will ignore the legacy of history, and thus will find ourselves stranded on the tiny desert island of our own moment in time. In particular, this applies to Christian theology, which should be thought, and lived, corporately by the church down through the ages. The remedy to ‘chronological snobbery’ is, as C. S. Lewis put it, ‘to keep the clean sea breeze of the centuries blowing through our minds’. Such is the motivation behind Michael Reeves’ introduction to a selection of influential or significant Christian theologians. Furthermore, by ‘sitting on the shoulders of giants … our glance can take in more things and reach farther than theirs’ (Bernard of Chartres).
This accessible and informative companion volume to The Breeze of the Centuries covers Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Owen, Jonathan Edwards, Friedrich Schleiermacher and Karl Barth. Each chapter begins with a brief biography and some background, then surveys each theologian’s major work or works, gives a timeline for historical context, and ends with guidance for further reading.