Faith and Criticism
The Sarum Lectures 1992
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Publisher: Oxford University Press
Number of Pages: 178
Width: 14.4 cm
Height: 22.3 cm
Faith and Criticism addresses a central problem in the church today - the tension between traditionalists and progressives. Traditionalists want above all to hold fast to traditional foundations in belief and ensure that nothing of value is lost, even at the risk of a clash with "modern knowledge". Progressives are concerned above all to proclaim a faith that is credible today, even at the risk of sacrificing some elements of traditional doctrine. They are often locked in uncomprehending conflict. Basil Mitchell argues that, not only in theology but in any other serious intellectual pursuit, faith and criticism are interdependent. A tradition which is not open to criticism will eventually ossify; and without faith in some established tradition criticism has nothing to fasten upon. This interdependence of faith and criticism has implications for society at large. Religious education can be Christian without ceasing to be critical, and a liberal society can espouse Christian values.
'Professor Mitchell offers a lucid and persuasive account of today's theological landscape.' Anthony Freeman, Church Times, 10 March 1995 'Professor Mitchell offers a lucid and persuasive account of today's theological landscape.' Anthony Freeman, Church Times In his latest book, Faith and Criticism...he keeps his head over an issue which is in danger of splitting the churches, and continues to write simple and attractive English. * Expository Times * Professor Mitchell offers a lucid and persuasive account of today's theological landscape. * Basil Mitchell, Church Times * Two features add to the attraction of Professor Mitchell's discussion, the autobiographical examples and metaphorical illustrations. * The Expository Times, May 1995 Volume 106 Number 8 * stimulating book ... an important contribution to contemporary religious thought and attitudes. Its clear minded defence of the interdependence of faith and criticism desreves to be widely read and carefully considered. * Epworth Review * Mitchell offers a lucid and persuasive account of today's theological landscape. * Times Higher Education Supplement * A lucid and persuasive account of today's theological landscape. * Times Higher Education Supplement * We are once again in his debt for the clarity and urbanity he brings to the discussion of issues in the epistemology of religious belief. * Religious Studies * I must confess that Mitchell's treatment is so judicious, so eminently sensible, so beautifully a specimen of the Anglican via media that this partisan of the via media can find little with which to seriously disagree. What Mitchell has set out to do in this book is to address fundamental questions concerning the relation of faith and criticism ... let us be thankful for the wise counsel contained in this book and profit from it when we undertake tasks of the sort upon which it is a reflection. * William P. Alston, Syracuse University, Faith and Philosophy * Basil Mitchell is a liberal philosopher-theologian of the best kind ... he skilfully and patiently builds up a cumulative case for 'conviction liberalism' - as opposed to the soggy kind - with which I found myself in considerable sympathy. In every chapter he wears his learning lightly, carefully leading the reader through the thickets until the clearing arrives. The result is a highly accessible and persuasive book which repays thoughtful reading. Faith and Criticism is a welcome antidote to the antics of both parties. Mitchell ... renders us a service for which we must be grateful. * Ralf K. Wustenberg, Anvil, Volume 14 No 4 1997 * On the most general level this book, with its clarity and grace, is an affirmation of a reflective faith. There are wonderfully insightful passages in this book ... the discussions are framed with such clarity that they are still illuminating. * Pro Ecclesia * The taxonomy is illuminating and helps to bring into focus a coherence and integrity...compact but broad-ranging book...Mitchell shows that one can take history seriously without becoming an historicist...this is an unpretentious, not overly technical, clearly written work. * Anglican Theological Review * Slim and elegantly written volume...this volume treats a complex set of questions in an eminently accessible and egaging manner...it is a deeply learned survey of difficult terrain. It will be read with profit by those informed by the more technical debate. * The Journal of Religion * ...an important contribution to the debate, an admirable defence of the liberal temper in theology and an expression of its author's fundamental faith in the possibility of fruitful dialogue, sympathy, understanding, and mutual respect between different world views. * The Journal of Theological Studies * This book provides an overview of the structure of Christianity as a living, diverse body...compact but broad-ranging book...This is an unpretentious, not overtly technical, clearly written work...Mitchell shows that one can take history seriously without becoming an historicist. * Anglican Theological Review *