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Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine
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Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  12,380 Ratings  ·  282 Reviews
The Christian church has a long tradition of systematic theology, that is, of studying biblical teaching on centrally important doctrines such as the Word of God, redemption, and Jesus Christ. Wayne Grudem's bestselling Systematic Theology has several distinctive features:


A strong emphasis on the scriptural basis for each doctrine
Clear writing, with technical terms kept to
...more
Hardcover, 1291 pages
Published January 3rd 1995 by Zondervan (first published 1994)
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Sam Ogurchak According to Matthew 22: 30; "For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven." This is part of…moreAccording to Matthew 22: 30; "For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven." This is part of Jesus' response to the Sadducee's question of marriage on the resurrection, if seven brothers marry the same woman who is the husband to that woman. According to the bible those whom Jesus has saved, by no work of their own, will be in heaven with him forever, with a glorified body and perfected heart, but will not be married. They will be of one body instead of as in earthly marriage where a man and woman become one; so in the resurrection people will be like the angels who are one. (less)

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Jeff Shelnutt
Systematic theologies are not easy to rate. There are a number of factors to consider, especially when approaching a work the size and scope of Grudem’s. Plus, there are all sorts of personal criteria that come into play, the least of which is not one’s own theological positions. So, I’ll try to break down this review into a few categories and comment on the appeal of each to me.

Readability. This is where I consider Grudem to shine the brightest. Theological, like philosophical works, are notori
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Tim
Oct 10, 2008 rated it did not like it
Widely praised in the insular evangelicalism tainted by a taste of modern Reformed thought, Grudem's Systematic Theology is a perfect evangelical circle-jerk, unafraid to be unaware of any currents of modern or historical thought. Relying mostly on evangelical systematics of the last 150 years, and, of course, on his own bent vision of Scripture, Grudem nevertheless assumes his work is timeless and objective.
Grudem defines systematic theology as any study that answers the question, "What does
...more
Daniel
Aug 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Since this book is written by a Particular Baptist-Charismatic, it is not a Reformed systematic theology. It is, however, a systematic theology written from a perspective that is friendly to Reformed theology. For that reason alone, it is not a book that modern Reformed theologians and clergy can safely ignore. If I was to be crudely reductionist in summarising my views on the book, I would suggest that the first 75% is very good, while the remaining 25% is perhaps not so good. This statement wo ...more
John
Oct 21, 2017 rated it it was ok
Grudem's Systematic Theology is the "go-to" Systematic Theology in a large part of the American church today, including my little corner. I finally got through it myself, after delaying for years.

The book is very well organized, as others have said. Grudem is a clear writer, and the book is very accessible to the average layman. In fact, the book is organized well to be used in adult Sunday School curriculum, as my church is doing. The title is "An Introduction to..." so keep that in mind. The b
...more
Kelly
Apr 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of the most helpful books I have ever read. A comprehensive systematic theology from a mostly reformed perspective that is an excellent and well-organized introduction to Biblical Christian beliefs and theology. I appreciated that Grudem as an author was upfront about his position on every topic he covered - he did not feign to be unbiased, instead clearly stating his own position and then providing ample bibliographies in each section from other authors with alternate viewpoints for the rea ...more
Travis
Oct 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Over the past couple of years, I made it a goal of mine to read through Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology. Grudem’s work is one of the standard systematic theology books used in Bible colleges and seminaries around the world. I read Millard Erickson’s book in my theology classes in seminary, and thus wanted to take a look at Grudem’s work. Over the next few paragraphs, I will mention just a few impressions of the work that I have. I will not attempt a thorough review, as to review a 1,200 page ...more
G Walker
Nov 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
Ehhhh... At one level, I get the hype... at another level, I have HUGE concerns. I am not sure really all what should or shouldn't be said about this work. Out the outset, Grudem is commendable on several levels. He is a first rate communicator. He is a great compiler and organizer. He's not afraid to take on controversial issues or draw unpopular conclusions. When it comes to logic, or at least structured theology, he is good and clearly communicates "tightly wound" argumentation without mental ...more
Jackie
Well, it took me almost a year, but I finally finished reading this. After reflecting on it, I'm reminded of a man I interviewed who had earned a Master of Divinity. He warned others considering pursuing a similar degree that you don't go into serious theological study without being prepared to change your mind about things you've long believed about doctrine after weighing all the scriptural evidence. I remembered being surprised when he told me this was the most difficult part of earning his d ...more
Nick Gibson
Aug 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
A useful and clear "first systematic theology" that is unafraid to take a position and equally unafraid to present the opposition. My agreement with Grudem's choices waxes and wanes, but my confidence that reading it was worth the time does not.
benebean
May 17, 2010 marked it as paused-progress
disclaimer: this isn't really a real "review" of this book. What I wrote was more like notes on first reactions to the text since a friend of mine had recently/was going through the book around the same time. It really was never meant as a well-crafted expression of my view(s) on the book, nor does it reflect a studious approach on my part in carefully endeavoring to fully understand every argument before offering a well thought out conclusion. So if you end up reading this, take it with a grai ...more
Ryan
Nov 25, 2013 rated it it was ok
Whether Grudem's attempt at constructing a Systematic Theology is useful to you or not depends entirely on what you're looking for.


If you're looking for a primer on theology, or even a contribution to the conversation on theology, then avoid this book like the plague. Grudem's Systematic is unabashedly biased, historically shallow, lacking in nuance, narrow in scope, and sparing in dialogue. Even in areas where you might happen to agree with Grudem, you'll still likely be frustrated by his reduc
...more
Amy
Dec 25, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: ALL Christians
Recommended to Amy by: My Pastor
Wow. Grudem defines "Systematic Theology" as what the bible tells us today about any given topic.....and I have to say that after reading this massive text, I feel much more apt to be able to read and understand scripture and apply it to my life. The one major thing that sticks out in this book is the extensive bibliographies at the end of each chapter. Grudem doesn't just leave you hanging with his opinion, he shows you other texts where you can explore other opinions. This book should be requi ...more
Dottie Parish
Dec 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Systematic Theology by Wayne Grudem illuminates the basic doctrines of Christianity. This reference book has seven major sections with chapters in each section. The information is rich, scholarly and detailed, but written in a style easy for a lay person to understand. I read all the way through it!

Grudem ends each chapter with the words to a hymn on the subject of the chapter. In picking hymns to relate to the Christian doctrines he “realized that the great hymns of the church throughout histor
...more
Dkovlak
Dec 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is in excellent book. It is extremely long and very detailed. Mr. Grudem does an excellent job of spelling out each viewpoint for each topic. This book is a tremendous resource for all serious Christians. Almost any question you can think of is addressed by this book from a Christian viewpoint.
Mason
Feb 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is my third time through systematic. Grudem does such a great job with this. Will be a long time classic.
Mike Jorgensen
Don't agree with him everywhere but he got me started in systematic theology.
Brenda
Apr 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: challies-2018
I started this book in a piecemeal fashion - first reading the chapters that most interested me and letting long periods of time pass between readings. Last fall, I started at Chapter 1 and began reading straight through, skipping what I had already read (and I'll probably come back to some of the appendices later). This book is full of sound, thorough explanations on the topics that it tackles. I won't say I agree with everything, but I find that I agree with probably 98-99% of Grudem's views, ...more
Claire B.
Apr 11, 2017 added it
Shelves: non-fiction
I'm fudging a little here because I definitely did not read the entire book, but a darn good chunk, anyway!
Bill Hines
Dec 25, 2017 rated it liked it
One sided, but very well written.
Joel
Jun 20, 2012 rated it really liked it

Maybe I'd be too picky to ask a theologian to keep his (or her) personal convictions out of a book entitled Systematic Theology. Grudem is an unabashed non-cessationist charismatic--which is fine--who fails to represent other perspectives as strongly as his own--this I have a problem with. Fortunately, this only comes up a few times throughout the full book. I know it's difficult to keep one's feelings to oneself but in order to validate personal theology in a systematic theology book, it seems,
...more
Hannah
Feb 15, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: owned-books
This was required reading for my college theology class. I liked about a third of it, found another third dry, and disagreed with the other third. For instance, he does not believe in six-day creation, but leans toward a day-age theory, which seems to me to be a bow to evolution. I wish he had included more studies of things like prophecy and symbolism in the Bible; he barely mentioned them, and yet the fulfilled prophecies from the old testament are some of the greatest wonders and miracles of ...more
Crini
Feb 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Emily
Feb 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: faith, fbc-recs
A "systematic theology" is a book that attempts to explain all of the major doctrines of Christianity and their basis in scripture, and Grudem's work is simply excellent. It's a textbook that can be read either straight through or used for reference when questions about specific doctrines arise, and I think it's a wonderful resource for Christians or those interested in the faith. It's very clear and accessible to a lay audience without seeming to compromise on important nuances. And it's satura ...more
John
May 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone with an interest in Systematic Theology from an Evangelical point of view.
Recommended to John by: Do not recall.
I am generally pleased with this systematic theology. The organization of the text (and it is a textbook make no mistake) makes it easy to read through and then to use as a reference. It is a permanent addition to my library. Some reviews of this text expect more from the author than was his goal. While historical and philosophical considerations are important in the broader study of the Humanities this book was not intended to be an Historical Theology or Philosophy of Religion textbook, it was ...more
Aaron Kleinheksel
Sep 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I highly recommend this book for anyone with an interest in the subject matter, most especially those for whom this will be their first foray into systematic Christian theology. This would be a terrific addition to the bookshelf of any Christian or non-Christian household (I'd love for critics of Christianity to read books like this). Keep in mind it is organized by subject matter, so it isn't necessary to sit down and read it all the way through like I did. You can read up on different topics a ...more
Chad Barnes
May 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reference
Grudem has produced an excellent work from a reformed, Calvinist perspective. Interestingly, many of my friends who are neither reformed nor Calvinist also view Grudem's Systematic Theology as a go-to work. It is surprisingly readable/accessible, even including questions for small group study. Truthfully, it is readable for junior high and up, although the sheer size of it may be too frightening!
Bob Hayton
Jun 25, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theology
Excellent work. Haven't read it all, but I've used it countless times. Grudem is pastorally minded, devotional, yet extremely scholarly too. He is careful and does justice to both sides, yet he firmly asserts and defends his position. This covers spiritual gifts and other topics not typically covered in Systematic Theology books. Plus it is packaged in a single, accessible volume. Highly recommended!
Jake
Oct 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in any aspect of Christianity. While I am largely in agreement with Grudem's conclusions, my chief appreciation is for his ability to humbly and respectfully dialogue and disagree with alternative convictions. Many Christian writers and bloggers today would do well to emulate the graciousness through which Grudem expresses his conviction.
Chris Hamm
Jan 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I gave it five stars simply for the fact that I can't give it four. Did I agree with everything the author said? No. But I appreciate his thoroughness in coming to his conclusions. And I liked the devotional aspect of the book.

Even if you disagree with his Reformed-leaning views, there's still a lot to be learned from this book.
Kristi-Joy
I often found Grudem's biblical supports to be inconsistent or even slightly twisted. His organizational structures within each chapter are rather frustrating as well. Yes, it covers everything, and he is highly regarded, but it still isn't that great.
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Wayne Grudem (PhD, University of Cambridge; DD, Westminster Theological Seminary) is research professor of theology and biblical studies at Phoenix Seminary, having previously taught for 20 years at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Grudem earned his undergraduate degree at Harvard University, as well as an MDiv from Westminster Seminary. He is the former president of the Evangelical Theologica ...more

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“I do not believe that God intended the study of theology to be dry and boring. Theology is the study of God and all his works! Theology is meant to be LIVED and PRAYED and SUNG! All of the great doctrinal writings of the Bible (such as Paul's epistle to the Romans) are full of praise to God and personal application to life.” 18 likes
“I am convinced that there is an urgent need in the church today for much greater understanding of Christian doctrine, or systematic theology. Not only pastors and teachers need to understand theology in greater depth -- the WHOLE CHURCH does as well. One day by God's grace we may have churches full of Christians who can discuss, apply and LIVE the doctrinal teachings of the Bible as readily as they can discuss the details of their own jobs or hobbies - or the fortunes of their favorite sports team or television program.” 8 likes
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