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Renewing Minds: Serving Church and Society through Christian Higher Education [Paperback]

By David S. Dockery (Author)
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Item description for Renewing Minds: Serving Church and Society through Christian Higher Education by David S. Dockery...

"Be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what
is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God." (Romans 12:2)
Renewing Minds serves as a clear introduction to the field of higher Christian
education, focusing on the distinctive, important role of Christian-influenced
learning---both in the Kingdom of God and in the academic world.
Union University president David S. Dockery writes for administrators, trustees,
church leaders, faculty, and staff who are just beginning their service or association
with a Christ-centered institution, and also to students and parents who are
considering a Christian college or university.

Chapters include: "Loving God with Our Minds," "Renewing Minds, Serving
Church and Society," "Shaping a Christian Worldview," "Reclaiming the
Christian Intellectual Tradition," "Integrating Faith and Learning," "Envisioning
a Shared Community of Tradition, Belonging, and Renewing Minds,"
"Establishing a Grace-Filled Academic Community," "Developing a Theology
for Christian Higher Education," and "Thinking Globally about the Future."

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Item Specifications...

Studio: B&H Academic
Pages   288
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.1" Width: 6" Height: 0.4"
Weight:   0.75 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Oct 31, 2007
Publisher   Broadman And Holman
ISBN  0805444955  
ISBN13  9780805444957  

Availability  0 units.

More About David S. Dockery

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David S. Dockery is president of Union University in Jackson, Tennessee, recognized as a top tier institution by U.S. News and World Report and the Time/Princeton Review.

Roger D. Duke is assistant professor of religion and communication at Baptist College of Health Services in Memphis, Tennessee, and adjunct assistant professor of Christian studies at Union University.

David S. Dockery currently resides in Jackson, in the state of Tennessee.

David S. Dockery has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Reclaiming the Christian Intellectual Tradition

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Humanities > Religious Studies > Christianity
2Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Education > College & University > General
3Books > Subjects > Professional & Technical > Education > By Level > College
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Education > General

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Pastoral Help > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Renewing Minds: Serving Church and Society through Christian Higher Education?

Best Book on the Integration of Faith and Learning  Oct 10, 2009
A problem area in Christian ministry is the area of Christian higher education. As we continue to progress through the 21st century we continue to see the decline of the Christian higher education movement. What was once a strong area in the Christian ministry, Christian higher education is failing. The Bible College movement has been in decline for sometime. Schools are folding without the students or the funds to stay open. Most people are going to secular colleges and universities over Christian schools. One of the major problems with Christian higher education has been the failure to critically interact with the movement and offer an approach to dealing with this decline. David Dockery has helped fill this void with his recent volume, Renewing Minds. Dockery, President of Union University in Jackson, TN, is extremely qualified to write in this capacity. A clear and thoughtful theologian, he has extensive experience in the areas of leading and administrating a Christian higher education institution. Not only has he lead Union University he also serves as chairman of the board of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities. With recommendations from J. I. Packer, R. Albert Mohler, Chuck Colson, and a foreword by Robert P. George of Princeton University, this is a volume that should be seriously considered by all who love Christian education.

In Chapter 1, Dockery highlights the problem in America. He writes,

"I believe that the integration of faith and learning is the essence of authentic Christian higher education and should be wholeheartedly implemented across the campus and across the curriculum. This was once the goal of almost every college in America. This is no longer the case.... What happened was a loss of an integrated worldview in the academy. There was a failure to see that every discipline and every specialization could be and should be approached from the vantage point of faith, the foundational building block for a Christian worldview" (pp. 5-6).

Tracing the history of the departure of American schools into secularism and surveying the kinds of Christian higher education institutions in North America leads to a defense of the system derived from Matthew 22:36-40 and the Great Commandment to love the Lord your God with your mind! The rest of the book explains how to go about obeying the Great Commandment in Christian higher education. Chapter 2 builds on this by explaining from the Scriptures the role of the Christian higher education institution and deals especially with the role of the Church, and therefore the Christian higher education institution in society. Chapter 3 explains the process of shaping a Christian worldview and the impact on this on Christian higher education. Chapter 4 is about reclaiming the Christian intellectual tradition. Dockery writes here after tracing the history of the Christian intellectual tradition

"Certainly we all learn apart from the great Christian intellectual tradition, apart from the vantage point of faith. But we cannot connect these things into a unified whole, we cannot fully understand the grand metanarrative; we cannot truly grasp how to explore and engage the issues in history and science, business and health care, apart from this approach to learning. Thus we must seek to sanctify the secular because Jesus Christ has come to earth" (p. 84).

Chapter 5 addresses the issues of integrating faith and learning. Chapter 6 addresses the necessary concept of developing a place of belonging and community where scholars, educators, staff, and students live together, share, serve, and learn. Chapter 7 begins to offer practical ways of establishing this grace-filled academic community. Chapter 8 articulates how to develop a theology of Christian higher education. Developing this theology would have positive implications for the academic community and the individual. Chapter 9 serves as the culmination of the book with thinking globally about the future. With the changes in communication we must embrace the new in order to communicate the orthodoxy of the past into a new global world. This means listening as much as talking especially as global Christianity begins to reflect non-Western images, positions, and principles. Christian higher education does not just simply say the West is best but listens to all Christian voices in order to best communicate the timeless truth in new ways. This is then concluded by an extensive bibliography on the integration of faith and learning.

Dockery's book fills a great need in the area of Christian higher education. He states the issues and the problems, traces the history of Christian higher education, articulates a biblical defense of the integration of faith and learning as well as a comprehensive theological defense. Not only does he articulate this at an academic level but he does not neglect the spiritual aspect of things, emphasizing not just "smart" Christians but "spiritual" Christians. The movement from "theory" to "practice" in Dockery's book is exceptional. I hardly find anything in it that I would disagree with or anything I wish I say that I did not see in the book. It is an even handed treatment that should be read by those who care about Christian higher education and especially those involved in Christian higher education. May we see a renewal of a close integration of faith and learning on our campuses as we emphasize the great truth that all truth is God's truth. May we raise up godly men and women who are passionate about the truth and about serving Christ in the world around them through the Great Commission. And may those of us involved in Christian higher education lead the way through authentic spirituality grounded in the truth. Highly recommended!
Defining Christian Education  Mar 25, 2008
What distinguishes a truly Christian education from what a student might receive from a secular university or college, or one that is merely "church-related"? Renewing Minds by David S. Dockery is an attempt at defining Christian higher education. Dockery is a noted scholar and President of Union University (TN), a liberal arts college which is fast becoming one of the premier Christian universities in America.
As defined by Dockery, Christian education is all about instilling in students a Christian world and life view that prepares them "to think Christianly, to think critically, to think imaginatively," thus "preparing them for leadership and preparing them for life" (26-27). The goal is not to brainwash or program students in a particular doctrinal or theological point of view. The one who has a Christian liberal arts education need not fear the challenges of secular scholarship. Rather, the educated Christian is able to appreciate the culture in which be or she lives while being "able to bring truth to bear on the prevailing zeitgeist of that culture" (111). Armed with a Christian worldview firmly rooted in biblical revelation, the Christian is able to challenge "the presuppositions of our contemporary culture, both secular and Christian [emphasis added], which in their current forms seems to be pragmatic, disjointed, and unconnected" (113).
Christian higher education must take place in a university setting that "is not a church" but "a faith-informed, faith-affirming, and grace-filled community. . ."(141). It is a community of believers seeking truth within an atmosphere of academic freedom operating within the limits set by the historic orthodox faith. It is an academic community in which the faculty are active scholars and teachers, and where the students are pursuing an intellectual understanding of their faith and not merely pursuing the skills and knowledge necessary for employment.
Whether you are a parent seeking a Christian college or university for a child, or simply one who desires a better understanding of what Christian higher education really is, Renewing Minds is must reading.
A Sterling Vision of Christian Education  Nov 22, 2007
David Dockery is the president of my alma mater, Union University in Jackson, Tennessee. Therefore, I have always taken great interest in keeping up with what Dockery says and does in the realm of Christian higher education. B&H publishing has done us all a favor by pulling together his ideas into a unified book with the theme - "Serving Church and Society through Christian Higher Education".

Dockery's heart beats with the passion of a pastor, theologian, academic, and administrator. He sees the Christian university as a place in society where both mind and heart can renewed along biblical and gospel lines. It is difficult work in our day, but it is a necessary work.

Dockery writes, "I believe that the integration of faith and learning is the essence of authentic Christian higher education and should be wholeheartedly implemented across the campus and across the curriculum."
And how is this accomplished? Dockery says, "We need more than just new ideas and enhanced programs, we need distinctively Christian thinking, the king of touch-minded thinking that results in culture-engaging living. ...This perspective involves the whole of our human personality. Our minds are to be renewed, our emotions purified, our conscience kept clear, and our will surrendered to God's will. Applying the Great Commandment entails all that we know of ourselves being committed to all that we know of God."

A number of the chapters in this book simply sparkled with insight. Pastors will especially note the overlap of Dockery's vision of Christian community in the university with what we also hope to find within the local church. For example, Dockery writes a chapter on "Establishing a Grace-Filled Academic Community" that could and should be applied to the local church as well, with an emphasis on unity, shared life, worship, and service. Within chapter six is a section titled, "Building Blocks for Building a Community with Renewed Message", a message with such urgency and clarity that I did in fact bring it home to our church for a renewed sense of Christian community.

Such is the case for much of this excellent book. You may not have a vocational calling to higher education. However, as a pastor or Christian parent, it is your responsibility to consider carefully the type of institution you send your students to for university education.

Dockery writes, "I would suggest that the starting point of loving God with our minds, thinking Christianly, points us to a unity of knowledge, a seamless whole, because all true knowledge flows from the one Creator to His one creation." Dockery's vision is compelling and sound, and I heartily recommend this book.

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