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Sources of Light: Resources for Baptist Churches Practicing Theology

Edited by: Amy L. Chilton, Steven R. Harmon
Product Code: P610
ISBN: 9780881467710
Publisher: Mercer University Press
Availability:Not currently available.
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Price: $35.00

Baptist theologians Amy L. Chilton and Steven R. Harmon maintain that the congregational freedom cherished by Baptists makes it possible for their local churches to engage in a practice of theology informed by a full range of voices speaking from the whole church beyond the local church, past and present. In their coedited book SOURCES OF LIGHT, a diverse group of twenty-three Baptist theologians engage in a collaborative attempt to imagine how Baptist communities might draw on the resources of the whole church more intentionally in their congregational practice of theology. These resources include theologies that attend to the social locations of followers of Jesus Christ--not only in terms of ethnic and gender identity, sexual orientation, citizenship status, and physical ability, but also in relation to the wider interreligious and ecological contexts of the contemporary church. They also include the church's efforts to bring its life together under the rule of Christ in its practices of confessing and teaching the faith, navigating moral disagreement, identifying saintly examples for living the Christian life, ordering its life as a worshiping community, and seeking more visible forms of Christian unity across the divisions of the church. This book commends listening deeply to these voices as an ecclesial practice through which the Spirit of God enlightens the church of Christ, whose rule draws the church into deeper participation in the life of the Triune God, forming the church for practices that offer the gift of Trinitarian communion to a fractured world. Contributors include: Amy L. Chilton, Noel Leo Erskine, Nora O. Lozano, Atola Longkumer, Mikeal N. Broadway, Courtney Pace, Susan M. Shaw, Khalia J. Williams, Cody J. Sanders, May May Latt, Jason D. Whitt, Raimundo C. Barretto, Jr., Rebecca Horner Shenton, Curtis W. Freeman, Kate Hanch, Rady Roldán-Figueroa, Stephen R. Holmes, Coleman Fannin, Myles Werntz, Derek C. Hatch, Philip E. Thompson, Jennifer W. Davidson, and Steven R. Harmon.
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Review by: Jerusha Neal, assistant professor of Homiletics, Duke Divinity School - April 1, 2020
"Sources of Light does more than celebrate the breadth and particularity of the Spirit's work in local congregations. It provides a tool box for robust practices of congregational discernment. The book is an invaluable resource for preachers who want to invite congregations past insular theological cul-de-sacs and into the broad expanse of God's faithful witness. Listening and responding to that witness is the challenge and joy of our Baptist inheritance."
Review by: Paul Baxley, executive coordinator, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship - April 1, 2020
"For those of us who believe that local congregations are uniquely equipped by the Holy Spirit and empowered by the Risen Jesus to offer a compelling witness to God's love in this broken world, and who also know that individual congregations deeply need community with the global church in order to flourish through participation in the life of the Triune God, SOURCES OF LIGHT provides both a powerful challenge and significant resources. By inviting congregations and their leaders to a much more substantial theological practice through listening to voices and testimonies from all across Christ's church, Amy Chilton and Steve Harmon have offered us a way to see difference not as an occasion for fear, but instead an opportunity for discernment, love, and greater faithfulness."
Review by: Lina Toth (Andronoviene), assistant principal and lecturer in Practical Theology, Scottish Baptist College, University of the West of Scotland - April 1, 2020
"This book provides a stimulating introduction to a whole range of theological lenses, offering multiple starting points for an in-depth exploration as well as providing an overall 'map' of the diversity within Christ's body. It offers models of healthy theological engagement from a Baptist perspective and will be of help to anyone engaged in guiding theological practice. Every reader (and community of readers) is bound to be surprised and challenged by some unexpected source of light presented here."
Review by: Bill Leonard, founding dean and professor of Divinity emeritus, Wake Forest University Divinity School - April 1, 2020
"This well-organized, well-focused study brings together a diverse group of scholars who address Christian and Baptist identity as a guide for congregations and individuals. These insightful essays cover a wide range of topics and issues confronting the twenty-first-century church…a timely contribution to Christian communities."
Review by: Nancy Bedford, Georgia Harkness Professor of Theology, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary - April 1, 2020
"The diverse voices in this book come together wonderfully to illuminate the value of taking specific communities of faith seriously as subjects of theology, even while challenging them to look beyond themselves to communities, both past and present, who both shed light and cast shadows on what it means to practice theology. The book is a splendid gift of love from Baptists to all those who care about the church, regardless of confessional leanings."

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