The Ordering of the Christian Mind: Karl Barth and Theological Rationality

Hardcover | January 15, 2016

byMartin Westerholm

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The adequacy of Karl Barth's conception of theological reasoning is a decisive point of contention in assessments of the legacy and potential of twentieth-century theology. Barth's work is a formative point from which other twentieth-century figures take their orientation; later thinkers havemost often taken their leave from his work by suggesting that it reflects an underdeveloped conception of the activities of human reason. The regularity with which other thinkers orient themselves in relation to Barth by pointing to a positivism, faith subjectivism, or fideism in his work elevatesthe question of theological reasoning to a decisive point in the comprehension of twentieth-century theology.The Ordering of the Christian Mind facilitates evaluation of Barth's work by reconstructing his conception of the activities of reason. It does so, first, by reframing the question. Martin Westerholm shows that Barth's understanding of the moral structure of the relation between God and creaturesdemands that the question of theological reasoning be approached through an ethical inquiry into the proper ordering of the activities of the mind. Secondly, Westerholm deploys a new set of categories through which Barth's work can be described. He shows that, by working through an account of thenoetic corollaries of faith and of the understanding of faith, Barth develops a coherent and compelling account of the standpoint, orientation, and freedom of theological reasoning. Development of this material is accompanied by new accounts of Barth's earlier theology of the resurrection, histheological development, and the significance of his engagement with Anselm.

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The adequacy of Karl Barth's conception of theological reasoning is a decisive point of contention in assessments of the legacy and potential of twentieth-century theology. Barth's work is a formative point from which other twentieth-century figures take their orientation; later thinkers havemost often taken their leave from his work b...

Martin Westerholm is Lecturer in Systematic Theology at Durham University.

other books by Martin Westerholm

Format:HardcoverDimensions:272 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.86 inPublished:January 15, 2016Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198753128

ISBN - 13:9780198753124

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Table of Contents

Introduction1. The Question of the Ordering of ThoughtPart I: Paul, Faith, and the Question of the Ordering of Christian Thought2. Paul and the Problem of the Ordering of Thought3. Resurrection and the Ordering of Christian ThoughtPart II: Anselm, Understanding, and the Question of the Ordering of Christian Thought4. The Question of the Ordering of Thought between Paul and Anselm5. Anselm, Understanding, and the Ordering of Christian ThoughtConclusion