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Christian Theology

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating details ·  2,734 Ratings  ·  76 Reviews
Christian Theology has been revised to take account of changes in the theological world as well as changes in the intellectual, political, economic, and social worlds. Several sections have been added, including a new chapter on postmodernism. At other points the discussion has been updated, and some portions of the original have been condensed, since the issues they origi ...more
Hardcover, 1312 pages
Published August 1st 1998 by Baker Academic (first published 1983)
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Willie Townsend Theology is the study of God and His Word. This English word is derived from two Greek words Theon (God) and Logos (Word)

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Tim Cooper
Aug 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
Although it took me most of the summer to read, I think this now replaces Wayne Grudem's Systematic Theology as my 'go to' book for quick theological study. Erickson is very detailed in his study and makes some really complex issues approachable.
Bret James Stewart
Oct 31, 2013 rated it liked it
Erickson has done a reasonably good job with this book. It is an introductory survey of the major topics of systematic theology. On the positive side, he has done a phenomenal job in structuring this book so that it is easy to find information. He has reading questions at the beginning of each section that tell you what you are going to encounter, and he uses headings and sub-heading effectively to break up information into logical groups. His writing style is also approachable and is able to ta ...more
Apr 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: school
This is the text we have been using in Theological Foundations since September. I have looked at a number of systematic theologies over the years, but this is the only one I've used in conjunction with a class. I highly recommend doing so. Having accountability, the views of others, and the guidance of a professor motivated me to get the most I could out of the book. I love Erickson's writing. I have learned so much over the course of the past two semesters. He is thorough, detailed, and balance ...more
Jacob Aitken
This was the first systematic text I read. Admittedly, nine years ago I really couldn't evaluate Erickson's positions. I read his text in conjunction with Grudem's and the differences became apparent. Erickson studied under Wolfhart Pannenburg and as a result he is able to competently grasp many tough philosophical issues. (This is largely absent from Grudem).

Since he is an evangelical, the reader can guess his positions on most topics. However, for the Calvinist reader a few things might be mo
Dec 03, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: theology
The strength of this book is the depth into which Mr. Erickson goes as he covers the main theological viewpoints on various topics. He does a great job of summarizing the various views, offering strengths and weaknesses of those views, and then offering his own final analysis as to which view he believes is the most Biblically sound. The drawback to this approach is that it is sometimes difficult to keep the views separated in one's own mind, causing some unnecessary confusion. Additionally, by ...more
Philip Christman
Feb 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I gave myself a year to work through the 1200+ pages of this book while trying to do justice to the text. it's taken almost that long, but was worth the time. Although completely evangelical, Erickson is unafraid to take less-than-majority opinions (it threw me that he leans to post -tribulationism). There is a constant emphasis on missions. best of all, this book is readable in a way that Strong's is not, and profound in a way that Bancroft's is not. I reccomend it highly.
Feb 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Although firmly anchored within the Baptist tradition, Erickson presents all sides of each issue with clarity and balance before making his conclusions on each issue. Unlike much work in theology, Erickson's prose is light and readable throughout, making this a practical option for serious students as well as laymen.
Mar 14, 2009 rated it liked it
Even though I was in seminary and have had several years of Bible teaching, this book was written in a language that many could understand. I appreciated the unbiased presentation of different perspectives.
Erik Spohr
Apr 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
An excellent - christian - systematic theology. Erickson is evenhanded, applies greater levels of philosophy than other protestant theologians, and deals fairly with those with whom he disagrees.
C.J. Moore
Oct 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's not perfect, but it's one of my favorites. I don't agree with a lot of Erickson's theological leanings, but he treats most positions fairly throughout the book before writing on his own. J.I. Packer calls it "gently Calvinistic." I think that's going a bit too far, myself. Even so, be sure to add this one to your shelf. Will make for good reference (for me) for years to come.
Steve Campbell
Aug 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: theology
This is a thorough, comprehensive, and reasoned examination of the basic theology of Christianity. While it is aimed toward theology students in college and seminary, it is accessible to any serious Christian who has a thirst for the knowledge of God and his ways.
Jason Hoke
Dec 21, 2017 rated it liked it
I always read a theology book with a highlighter. This one though is 70% what others believe and 20% of why they are wrong with 10% on his view to wrap things up. Probably my least favorite of the Theology books I have reviewed.
John Rimmer
Dec 31, 2017 rated it liked it
I'd recommend Grudem before Erickson, but who cares what I say.
Krista Dominguez
While I don't agree with all of Erickson's conclusions, this is an excellent systematic theology textbook.
Brent McCulley
Jan 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theology
My first systematic theology finally completely read from cover to cover! What a refreshing feeling closing this after reading the last page after several months of wrestling with Millard J. Erickson's treatment in Christian Theology. Let me begin by saying obviously I don't agree with all of Erickson's thought--who would? As a systematic theology, the systematizer does the painstaking job at putting his theology into a coherent system, and as such, it reflects Erickson's system, and not someone ...more
Michael Dunlop
Jan 05, 2013 rated it liked it
Overall, it's a decent theology, but I don’t think it deserves as widespread usage as it receives in conservative Baptist seminaries today. In general, I think I prefer Grudem and others (even McCune if you want a very baptist and dispensational perspective).

Pros: I liked Erickson’s handling of Soteriology, especially Election (chapter’s 43-45 coupled with chapter 15 “God’s plan”). Erickson is one of just a few people to incorporate Molinism into his understanding of pretemporal, unconditional
Feb 08, 2014 rated it liked it
Substance: 3/5
Readability: 4/5

This is my second Systematic Theology text (first was Wayne Grudem's), so I will not presume to speak intelligibly on where Erickson's work fits in the grand scheme of ST.

The Good: The ideas he put forth were done in a clear, proper manner. Where ideas were less complicated, Erickson used analogies and metaphors to help illustrate the point. I didn't agree with him on everything, but overall his opinions are predictable and evangelical. I knew from where he was com
May 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Christian Theology
by Millard J. Erickson

"Leading evangelical scholar Millard Erickson offers a new edition of his bestselling textbook, now substantially updated and revised throughout. This edition takes into account feedback from professors and students and reflects current theological conversations, with added material on the atonement, justification, and divine foreknowledge. Erickson's comprehensive introduction is biblical, contemporary, moderate, and fair to various positions, and it appl
Aug 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was the primary textbook for both of my Systematic Theology classes at NOBTS. While this isn't the type of book one would read straight through (I certainly didn't!) one could read over a period of time, or read certain sections as needed. Erickson is conservative in his theological viewpoint, but more moderate on the issues than Grudem, and I think Erickson did a good job fairly representing other theological points of view. His discussions delve into the philosophical more than Grudem, so ...more
Jacob Park
Jul 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I'm not going to analyze the content of this book in this review. I'd highly recommend that you analyze it while reading it yourself. It's very thick but highly readable.

We used this as a textbook (along with Berkhof) for Dr. Packer's Systematic Overview class at Regent in the early 2000's. As he put it, Erickson is: robustly evangelical, essentially conservative and gently Calvinistic.

It's a very good overview of what Christians, that are not highly skewed to the right or the left, have believ
Alex Fardi-turkmani
Jan 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Erickson is a scholar. This book is a must for any student of Christian Doctrine. If you are looking for a systematic with a philosophical spin, Erickson is your man. If you are looking for a systematic to read with someone who is new to the faith or new to learning doctrine, I would go for Grudem. Erickson is better understood by people who have a working knowledge in Christian Theology.

His companion, abridged version to this book is really helpful as well!

I did not read it cover to cover. I h
Nathan Parker
Jul 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
I read the third edition of the book. Ericsson does an excellent, detailed job in his discussion on Systematic Theology. This book also makes an excellent resource for searching for content for Systematic Theology papers and research. I am not sure if I would use it in my Systematic Theology classes as a primary textbook due to the fact it is difficult to test/quiz students on. The information can be difficult to find in printed volumes, and students could become a little overwhelmed being teste ...more
Aug 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Erickson takes a simple, straightforward approach: he describes the basic theological positions on an issue as clearly as possible, and then he explains his position. I don't agree with every one of Erickson's conclusions, and you probably won't either. But where we differ (on baptism, for instance), I could recognize my position in his descriptions. This is what Tim Keller calls "Gillespie's Rule B: Represent and engage your opponents’ position in its very strongest form, not in a weak ‘straw m ...more
G Walker
Nov 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
I don't get how this is a standard across the board. Erickson is a good and clear communicator, but as a definitive text that I would want my students to wade through (wasting a ton of time in the process - this is a big book), I just don't see it. He had his place and time, and is worthy of respect... and while I would choose this text over Berkhof or Grudem, I still think there are MANY better texts out there that would (even if/where one would disagree) stimulate one's mind and heart in a mor ...more
Aug 28, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This is an exhaustive book on systematic theology. The author rightfully presents and argues for his views for each subtopic, but does a noteworthy job of explaining the history of each subtopic as well as fairly and accurately presenting other views.

This is a must have for folks interested in systematic theology. Not all of the sections will appeal equally, but it is a great reference to have.
May 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Good systematic theology book that takes a fair look at the issues. The basic format of each chapter is to take a quick overview of the major positions on each topic before Erickson gives his own view on the issue. While I didn't agree with all of Erickson's conclusions, particularly as he began discussing the Church and the End Times, I appreciated how he presented all the arguments for each issue before giving his own opinion.

4 stars.
David Goetz
Apr 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: systematics
I read the second edition a few years ago, and it felt a little dated; the third presumably accounts for theological and philosophical work (Erickson does an excellent job of addressing pertinent philosophical questions) done since the second edition came out. On the whole, Erickson is wonderful. He's a baptist who rejects particular atonement but otherwise defends the Calvinist understanding of Holy Scripture.
Sorta Anita
Sep 24, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Lay People, student and Pastor
This book helps Christian scholars to have better understanding on Christian Theology. It contains a detail information from different Christian scholars as well as practitioners. We need to read it at least twice on its particular subject since this book contains many Christian terminologies. But the author provides its meanings in the appendix, glossary. etc.
It's good to read this book along with Wayne Grudem (Another Christian Theology book.
Peter Fick
Dec 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theology
This book is impressive in its detailed treatment of so many central theological issues, with up to date examples. It is very accessible and never becomes dull. The sheer size of the book is a bit intimidating. I would recommend everyone who's really interested in theological issues to at least read one chapter to discover how wonderfully written this book is. Five stars; each of them fully deserved!
Oct 22, 2016 rated it it was ok
The book was far too cumbersome in different ways. The sheer bulk of it does not make for portable reading. Along with that is the academic language which makes it difficult to understand the point of each chapter. This text is most likely meant for advanced academic classes in Christian-Religious studies, but it is only useful in the academic arena. There are many other, and far simpler, ways to convey a point of view, or historical fact, no matter what topic you are studying.
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Millard J. Erickson (PhD, Northwestern University) has served as a pastor and seminary dean and has taught at several schools, including Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Western Seminary (Portland and San Jose), and Baylor University. He has also held numerous visiting professorships, both in the United States and internationally, and is the author of many books. Erickson lives in Mounds ...more
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“Theology is necessary because truth and experience are related. While some would deny or at least question this connection, in the long run the truth will affect our experience. A person who falls from the tenth story of a building may shout while passing each window on the way down, “I’m still doing fine,” and may mean it sincerely, but eventually the facts of the matter will catch up with the person’s experience.” 2 likes
“We often tend to think of the Father as transcendent and far off in heaven; similarly, the Son may seem far removed in history and thus also relatively unknowable. But the Holy Spirit is active within the lives of believers; he is resident within us. He is the particular person of the Trinity through whom the entire Triune Godhead currently works in us.” 1 likes
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