Christian Books, Bibles, Music & More - 1.888.395.0572
Call our Toll Free Number:
Find us on:
Follow Us On 

Twitter!   Join Us On Facebook!

Christian Bookstore .Net is a leading online Christian book store.

Shop Christian Books, Bibles, Jewelry, Church Supplies, Homeschool Curriculum & More!

Reformation Thought: An Introduction [Hardcover]

By Alister E. McGrath (Author)
Our Price $ 131.71  
Retail Value $ 154.95  
You Save $ 23.24  (15%)  
Item Number 205794  
Buy New $131.71
Out Of Stock!
Currently Out Of Stock

Item Specifications...

Pages   344
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.16" Width: 6" Height: 1.11"
Weight:   1.5 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Jan 16, 1991
Publisher   Wiley-Blackwell
ISBN  0631215204  
EAN  9780631215202  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
"Reformation Thought" is an acclaimed and popular introductory guide to the central ideas of the European reformation for theology and history students.

Buy Reformation Thought: An Introduction by Alister E. McGrath from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9780631215202 & 0631215204

The team at Christian Bookstore .Net welcome you to our Christian Book store! We offer the best selections of Christian Books, Bibles, Christian Music, Inspirational Jewelry and Clothing, Homeschool curriculum, and Church Supplies. We encourage you to purchase your copy of Reformation Thought: An Introduction by Alister E. McGrath today - and if you are for any reason not happy, you have 30 days to return it. Please contact us at 1-877-205-6402 if you have any questions.

More About Alister E. McGrath

Alister E. McGrath Alister E. McGrath is Andreas Idreos Professor of Science and Religion at the University of Oxford. One of the world's leading theologians, he has written numerous critically acclaimed books, including The Intellectual World of C. S. Lewis (Wiley, 2013), Why God Won't Go Away: Engaging the New Atheism (2011), and Darwinism and the Divine: Evolutionary Thought and Natural Theology (Wiley, 2011). He is also the author of some of the most widely used theology textbooks, including the bestselling Christian Theology: An Introduction now in its fifth edition (Wiley, 2010).

Alister E. McGrath currently resides in Oxford. Alister E. McGrath was born in 1953 and has an academic affiliation as follows - University of Oxford, King's College, London, UK King's College London.

Alister E. McGrath has published or released items in the following series...
  1. 2009 Gifford Lectures
  2. Aedyn Chronicles
  3. Blackwell Brief Histories of Religion
  4. Blackwell Manifestos (Paperback)
  5. Heart of Christian Faith
  6. Scientific Theology
  7. Study in the Foundation of Doctrinal Criticism

Are You The Artisan or Author behind this product?
Improve our customers experience by registering for an Artisan Biography Center Homepage.

Product Categories
1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Humanities > Religious Studies > Christianity   [2832  similar products]
2Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Humanities > Religious Studies > History   [390  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > History > Europe > General   [8439  similar products]
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Church History > General   [6817  similar products]
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Church History > Protestant   [967  similar products]
6Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > General   [8607  similar products]
7Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Protestant   [815  similar products]
9Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Religious Studies > History   [4688  similar products]

Similar Products
Luther and Erasmus: Free Will and Salvation Library of Christian Classics (Paperback Westminster))
Luther and Erasmus: Free Will and Salvation Library of Christian Classics (Paperback Westminster))
Item: 371304

Reviews - What do our customers think?
Englightening Overview of Theology  Apr 23, 2007
This introduction is just what you'd expect it to be, a concise history of reformation thought which covers the basic ideas that famous thinkers like Luther and Zwingli put forth in their time. It is a must have for anyone interested in Christian thought. I found it easy to read and very effective in explaining its numerous concepts. It is always beneficial to know the history of the world's largest religion.
Drawing Back the Curtain of the Reformation  Nov 8, 2006
McGrath presents a book that aims to introduce; explain; and contextualize the period of history known as the Reformation. In his introduction McGrath lays out a clear and concise understanding of the need for Reformation in the sixteenth century and just what the concept of the Reformation was. He creates a picture of what impact the printing press would have on the Reformation and then puts the ideas behind the Reformation in social context; that is, the social role of religious ideas

The backdrop of the Reformation takes place well before the sixteenth century. McGrath covers the important aspects of the rise of anti-clericalism and anti-papalism that was taking place in the fifteenth century. This rebellion, in part, had to do with taxes, in which the clergy was exempt.

McGrath's chapter on Humanism and the Reformation is helpful in understanding the word `humanism' as used by a twenty-first century writer vs. the sixteenth century writer or theologian. In the modern sense, humanism is an anti-religious philosophy, which affirms the human without any reference to God. According to McGrath, "humanists of the fourteenth, fifteenth or sixteenth centuries were remarkably religious..."

The book goes to great length to describe the intellectual movement of Scholasticism. He defines it "not as a specific system of beliefs, but to a particular way of organizing theology." McGrath says that to some, Scholasticism was just a form of theological nitpicking. Unfortunately, McGrath bogs down in this area. In fact, he says "I have found it impossible to simplify any further the material which follows...many readers will probably be gripped with a sense of utter tedium as I try to explain some of the leading ideas of scholasticism." In this he is absolutely correct!

I like the way McGrath presents a brief biographical introduction to each of the leading Reformers; Luther, Zwingli, Melanchthon, Bucer, and Calvin. He then enters into an interesting discussion of the doctrine of Justification by Faith. He says the central question forced upon the church by the rise of humanism was `What must I, as an individual, do to be saved?" It is at this point that Luther "wander[s] on to the stage as its chief actor." McGrath then proceeds to thoroughly discuss Luther's concept of Justification by faith alone, which is that the individual sinner is incapable of self-justification. Likewise McGrath explains the differing opinions of all the Reformers on this subject including that of the Roman Catholic Church. He follows his discussion of Justification by faith with a brief chapter on Predestination. Other doctrines presented by McGrath include the Doctrine of Sacraments and the Doctrine of the Church.

Since the idea of scriptura sola became the mantra of the reformers, McGrath takes time to look at the importance of Scripture in his chapter "The Return to Scripture." He summarizes the Reformation attitude toward Scripture by quoting William Chillingworth, a famous seventeenth-century English Protestant, "I say, the Bible only, is the religion of Protestants." McGrath's section on The Right to Interpret Scripture is important. He points out that Luther suggests that the ordinary pious Christian believer is perfectly capable of reading Scripture and making perfect sense of what he finds within its pages.

McGrath's chapter on The Political Thought of the Reformation gives us pause to examine our own thoughts and beliefs regarding church and state. He poses the question, "what happens if the state become tyrannical? Have Christians the right to intervene and actively oppose the state? He goes on to discuss all of the Reformers views regarding political thought.

McGrath spends some brief time on the English Reformation in Chapter 13. The origins are discussed stating that the background lies in Henry VIII concern to ensure a smooth transition of power after his death through producing a son as heir to the English throne. Unfortunately, his marriage to Catherine of Aragon had produced a daughter, the future queen, Mary Tudor. McGrath takes the reader through a maze of intrigue as Henry begins divorce proceedings, is faced with excommunication, and is faced with the threat of invasion from neighboring catholic states.

McGrath concludes with the Impact of the Reformation Thought upon History. He cites several positive impacts such as the idea that the real vocation of a Christian lay in serving God in the world and that working hard caused one to prosper.

I found the book interesting at times and at other times I could hardly comprehend what I was reading (as in the chapter on scholasticism). Nevertheless, I enjoyed the book and will most likely use it as a reference for years to come.

The author concludes by admitting that the book is limited, but that it has tried to draw back the curtain a little, and allow us to understand better what otherwise might remain a complete mystery. To this, I agree.
Reformation Theology: Comprehensive  Apr 18, 2005
'Reformation Thought' is a comprehensive discussion of the issues at stake in the Protestant and Catholic Reformations.
Alister McGrath has an amazing grasp of the issues and honestly portrays in a fair way the differing viewpoints from an unbiased, historical perspective.

My favorite sections dealth with justification by faith and the return to scripture, which I summarize here...

Prior to the Reformation, Scholasticism had dominated. Scholasticism was a movement that began in the Middle Ages which sought to find a systematic and rational justification to the Christian faith. Most of it was a systematic replay of Augustinian teachings organized by Aristotle's philosophies.

There are two main subdivisions of scholasticism, which can be associated with two time periods. The first part of the scholastic period was dominated by realism, while the later part by nominalism. Realism said that universals were entities of themselves, while nominalism said that universal concepts are not real. Proponents of Realism included Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus.

There were two forms of Nominalism: the via moderna and the schola Augustiniana moderna. The common feature was only that they were both anti-realism. The two schools reflect the debate between Pelagianism and Augustianism, over the ability of humans to merit salvation. The via moderna tended toward the positions of Pelagius and the schola Augustiniana towards that of Augustine.

The theology of the via moderna was dominated by a covenant between God and humans in which humans, when people followed their conscience and "did their best" they could somehow obligate God to accepting them based on the terms of the covenant. Human works were of little inherent value. But God had promised, through the covenant, to treat them as if they were of much greater value.

The theology of the schola Augustiniana reflected the views of Augustine that humans are totally depraved. Salvation is totally the work of God, from the beginning to its end. This view may have influenced Calvin.

While it appears that Martin Luther's new theology seems to stand at the end of a long tradition of Augustinian teachings, they were different. It does not appear that Luther was ever directly influenced by the schola Augustiniana, but was reacting to via moderna.

Prior to the Reformation, the concepts of justification and grace were very vague. There had been no authoritative pronouncement from the church for over a thousand years. The rise of humanism raised the question, "What must I, as an individual, do to be saved?"

Luther initially studied and followed the via moderna, which was the philosophy that God was obliged to justify anyone who humbles themselves before God and does what lies within them (quod is se est).

Luther realized that he was not capable of meeting the preconditions for justification. Luther "re-discovered" Augustine's doctrine of total depravity, the belief that humans are incapable of saving themselves and require God's intervention.

Luther's difference with Augustine was where God's grace was to arise. He believed God's grace was alien or "forensic" to the person, whereas Augustine saw grace as something that was planted in the person that caused a change. Augustine believed that this caused an imparted righteousness, a righteousness that grows within and justifies the person, whereas Luther and Melancthon believed righteousness was imputed, or declared by God. Luther called a believer "simul iustus et peccator", meaning simultanouesly righteous, yet a sinner.

Whereas most Catholic theologians would have claimed that we are justified by grace, and would even go so far as to say that grace is received by faith, Luther stood out by declaring that faith is the ONLY means of receiving that grace, and not by anything we do. He added the "alone" to "justification by grace through faith alone."

When Luther taught that salvation was personal and attacked the sacerdotal system with his "priesthood of all believers" doctrine, it took the leverage out of the Church's whole economic support system (indulgences).

Some people charged Luther with being antinomian (lawless), but Luther believed that obedience to God's law was the result of faith. Faith does not merely believe that something is true, but also acts on that belief and relies on it. However, works are not the cause of justification, it is the result of it.

Another battle cry of the Reformation was the call to return to Scripture, or the Bible (Sola Scriptura). This doctrine challenged the accepted role of tradition in the process of interpreting Scripture.

The Catholic Church raised some valid questions for the new approaches to Scripture. First, Sola Scriptura seemed insufficient considering that almost all heresies claimed the Scripture in their defense. The Catholic Church argued that the Scriptures could not be interpreted in any way, but rather within the context of the historical continuity of the Church.

The Reformers emphasized the Bible as the sole authority and that the Church derived its authority from the Bible. While Catholics stressed the importance of historical continuity, Protestants emphasized the importance of doctrinal continuity.
Reading English  Mar 9, 2005
Often, those who do not know the difference in the way certain words are spelled in English in the UK and the US assume that there are typos and poor editing. If that is the case in these "reviews" then a bit more education is needed on the part of the reviewers. If indeed there are errors on every other page, kindly address those to Blackwell. They, no doubt, will be happy to know of them, and perhaps provide the attentive reviewer with a complimentary copy of the corrected version, or perhaps a link to where they can buy an English Dictionary, UK version.
Good book, baaaaad editing  Apr 10, 2003
I just had to write a review of this book, because I think it is the most poorly edited published text that I have ever read. Not only is it chock-full of typos, but the author repeats himself unnecessarily in a number of places. The sorry state of this text is even more surprising given that it is a third edition. One would expect better from Blackwell's. That said, the book does serve as a good general intro to the topic. The author is interesting and clear, and seems to hit the important points.

Write your own review about Reformation Thought: An Introduction

Customer Support: 1-888-395-0572
Welcome to Christian Bookstore .Net

Our team at Christian Bookstore .Net would like to welcome you to our site. Our Christian book store features over 150,000 Christian products including Bibles, Christian music, Christian books, jewelry, church supplies, Christian gifts, Sunday school curriculum, purity rings, homeschool curriculum and many other items to encourage you in your walk with God. Our mission is to provide you with quality Christian resources that you can benefit from and share with others. The best part is that our complete selection of Christian books and supplies is offered at up to 20% off of retail price! Please call us if you have any questions or need assistance in ordering at 1-888-395-0572. Have a blessed day.

Terms & Conditions | Privacy Policy | Site Map | Customer Support