From the JEC Blog

Archive for the ‘JEC at TEDS’ Category

JEC at TEDS Hosting a Colloquium on Jonathan Edwards’ Global Legacies (Jan 6, 2012)

“The New England theology remains the most significant and enduring Christian theological school of thought to have originated in the United States. Yet today little is known about it beyond the circle of those with a professional interest in the scholarship associated with this movement. Even in this select group, one seldom finds anything like a complete understanding of the different phases of its life or the works of its main proponents. There has been scholarly work on the movement post mortem, but for much of the twentieth century that interest amounted to little more than a trickle of scholarly articles and several (important) monographs. It is only in the last quarter century that significant scholarly interest in these theologians has been rekindled. A clutch of important studies, and a collection of some of the most important writings from the movement have seen the light of day in this period, signalling a renewal of serious intellectual interest in the theologians of this movement.”

These words are taken from the introduction of a forthcoming book edited by Oliver D. Crisp and Douglas A. Sweeney, After Jonathan Edwards: The Courses of the New England Theology (New York: Oxford University Press, 2012). This volume offers a reassessment of the New England Theology in light of the work of Jonathan Edwards. In this volume scholars whose work has made important theological and philosophical contributions to our understanding of the thought and work of Edwards are brought together with scholars of New England theology and early American history to produce a cross-disciplinary symposium dealing with the ways in which New England Theology flourished, how themes in Edwards’ thought were taken up and changed by representatives of the school, and how it has had a lasting influence on the shape of American Christianity.

Based on this new book, the Jonathan Edwards Center at TEDS is presenting a panel discussion on “After Jonathan Edwards: The Courses of the New England Theology.” This JEC event will be part of the New Directions in Edwards Studies series.

The colloquium will include:

1. Moderator: Douglas A. Sweeney, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

2. Introductions: Oliver D. Crisp, Fuller Theological Seminary

3. “Jonathan Edwards and His Educational Legacy” by Kenneth P. Minkema, Yale University

4. “Edwards in the Second Great Awakening: The New Divinity Contributions of Edward Dorr Griffin and Asahel Nettleton” by David W. Kling, University of Miami

5. “An Edwardsean Lost and Found: The Legacy of Jonathan Edwards in Asia” by Anri Morimoto, International Christian University (Tokyo)

6. Initial response: Ava Chamberlain, Wright State University

7. Discussion with the audience

This event will be taking place on the campus of Trinity Evangelical Divinity School on Friday, Jan 6, 2012 at 3:00 pm (location TBA).

New Directions in Edwards Studies: Barshinger on Edwards and the Psalms

The Jonathan Edwards Center at TEDS is pleased to announce its second lecture in the “New Directions in Edwards Studies” series. David Barshinger, a PhD candidate at TEDS, will be giving a stimulating lecture on the significance of the Psalms in Jonathan Edwards’ gospel-centered, Scripture-saturated ministry.

The lecture will be on February 23, 2011 at 1pm in the Hinkson Hall on the campus of TEDS. The event is free and all are welcome.

FREE COPY of the 5-volume set: Owen Strachan and Douglas Sweeney, The Essential Edwards Collection (Moody, 2010) to the first five attendees to arrive at the lecture!

Abstract: “Making the Psalter One’s ‘Own Language’: Jonathan Edwards Engages the Psalms.”

While Jonathan Edwards is hailed as a great theologian and philosopher, few remember him for his exegesis of Scripture. Yet every day Edwards delved into the Bible, searching for a deeper understanding of God and divine things; indeed, the Scriptures saturate Edwards’ sermons, treatises, and several notebooks he kept for personal study. Looking at Edwards’ engagement with the Psalms, one of his favorite books of the Bible, reveals that his writings were infused with Psalmistic language, that the Psalms deeply informed his theology, and that the Psalms provided Old Testament support for the gospel thrust of his ministry.

New Directions in Edwards Studies: Inaugural Lecture by Richard Muller

The Jonathan Edwards Center at TEDS is pleased to announce its inaugural lecture in the “New Directions in Edwards Studies” series. Richard Muller, P. J. Zondervan Professor of Historical Theology at Calvin Theological Seminary, will be giving a new lecture on Edwards and free choice.

The lecture will be on September 29, 2010 at 1pm at the ATO chapel on the campus of TEDS. The event is free and all are welcome.

Abstract: Jonathan Edwards and the Absence of Free Choice: A Parting of Ways in the Reformed Tradition.

Jonathan Edwards, frequently identified in modern discussions of his thought as the “greatest American theologian” and often regarded as an epitome of Calvinism for his teaching on the freedom of will, was, in his own time and for a century after his death, a much-debated thinker whose views had a polarizing effect in Reformed circles. Scholars have examined the reception of his ideas in America and have noted a rather pointed opposition both in New England and in the American South. The reception of Edwards’ thought in Britain, however, has received far less attention, even though it offers a rather significant perspective on Edwards’ place in the Reformed tradition.

This lecture takes up the issue of Edwards’ reception in Britain, examining understandings of Edwards’ doctrine of the freedom of will in two historical contexts, the late eighteenth century and the third quarter of the nineteenth. In the former context, Edwards’ thought was positively evaluated – surprisingly for much the same reason – by the Unitarian, universalist, and materialist philosopher Joseph Priestley and the orthodox Scottish Calvinist theologian, George Hill. In the latter context, despite agreement on the pedigree of Edwards’ thought, the Scottish Calvinist philosopher Sir William Hamilton could identify Edwards’ views as a dangerous heresy, while the Scottish Calvinist theologian William Cunningham could argue positively for Edwards’ place in the Reformed confessional tradition.

By examining these two phases of the British reception of Edwards’ theology and by noting briefly the differences between Edwards’ views on the freedom of will and the views expressed throughout the era of Reformed orthodoxy, the lecture points to a parting of the ways in the Reformed tradition that took place largely in the eighteenth century.

Welcome to the JEC at TEDS Blog

On behalf of the staff and associates of the Jonathan Edwards Center at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, welcome to the JEC at TEDS blog.  We’re glad you’ve come, and we hope that you’ll check back often for updates, live-blogs, special excerpts, featured interviews, and more.

Please take note of a special feature of this blog: Director Doug Sweeney’s “Book Notes”, short interactions with recent texts relating to Edwards studies.  These will not be published anywhere else, so readers wanting to benefit from Dr. Sweeney’s scholarly insight will need to make the JEC at TEDS blog a regular destination.  Our fellows and staff will join in on this effort as well.

In the future, we intend for this blog to be a hub for church people and scholars who are drawn to study the unique life, ministry, and thought of Jonathan Edwards.  We hope that you will comment frequently and help us fulfill this mission.