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The Principles of Theology: An Introduction to the Thirty-Nine Articles [Paperback]

By W. H. Griffith Thomas (Author)
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The Principles of Theology: An Introduction to the Thirty-Nine Articles by W. H. Griffith Thomas

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Wipf & Stock Publishers
Pages   602
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.02" Width: 6.12" Height: 1.23"
Weight:   1.88 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 2005
Publisher   Wipf & Stock Publishers
ISBN  159752073X  
ISBN13  9781597520737  

Availability  0 units.

More About W. H. Griffith Thomas

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! W.H. Griffith Thomas (1861-1924) was a minister, scholar, and teacher born in Oswestry, Shropshire, England. His varied Christian service included pastoral work in Oxford and London, England, a professorate at Wycliffe College in Toronto, Canada, a worldwide Bible conference ministry, and prolific writing. He was also a cofounder with Lewis Sperry Chafer and Alex B. Winchester of Dallas Theological Seminary.

W. H. Griffith Thomas was born in 1861 and died in 1924.

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1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Catechisms

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Reviews - What do customers think about The Principles of Theology: An Introduction to the Thirty-Nine Articles?

A good Low Church Exposition  Sep 9, 2008
This seems to be the best of the Low Church (Protestant and Reformed, but not so Catholic)expositions of the Thirty Nine Articles. Griffith Thomas's approach to the sacraments is very Low Church and seems to rely a good deal on John Calvin directly or indirectly.
Thorough and engaging.  Oct 27, 2007

Reviewer's disclaimer: I am an Episcopal/Anglican layman, and not a trained theologian. Hence my insights or lack thereof are informed by a passion for Anglican theology--a theology which by many modern-day Episcopal Church standards is orthodox/conservative.
Edition note: I'm not sure of the differences between this "7th" edition and the one I read, but I will note that the one I read was the last edition published before the author's death circa 1950, listed as a 4th edition. Perhaps the publisher can supply the needed information here.
"The Principles of Theology" is a thorough, engaging work on the classic Anglican statement of the English Reformation, the 39 Articles. These articles can be found in any copy of the American Book of Common Prayer, but are seemingly ignored by a fair number of our current Episcopal leadership. This is a grievous thing, for these statements should continue to inform any 21st century Anglican who takes his or her faith seriously, despite the fact that the Articles are also very much reflective of their times--the ferment of the Reformation.
The "Introduction" covers a number of topics, including Revelation, Faith, Doctrine, Theology, Creeds, and Anglican Articles. There is also a quite lengthy and helpful History of the Articles.
Every one of the 39 Articles is covered in this book; each chapter is systematically laid out and organized so that a number of facets are covered, including a history of the particular Article when necessary. Footnotes are extensive and well worth reading. It should also be noted that the author uses both Greek and Latin terms which are not always translated--a hindrance for this reader.
Griffith-Thomas was a Low Church Evangelical, though he does at times quote Anglo-Catholics and others to show their opinion. But he often does this to refute them, and at times seems to be going out of his way to attack them. He mentions Newman seven times, and at one point footnotes a quote that seems meant to prove that Anglo-Catholics were all depressive! I suppose given the polemical nature of the Articles, certain strong opinions are bound to crop up, but at times his case against Anglo-Catholic theology seems strained. This is exemplified by his attack on images in the Church--only discussed in Article 22, in the context of veneration of images and Purgatory--in which he seems to completely miss the point of imagery in the church, not to be used as a form of idol worship, but as an aid to instruction and worship itself. He states that "craving for the visible" is a "prominent feature of natural and unspiritual religion". But where does that leave the Incarnation?
Yet speaking of the Incarnation, this is one of the areas of theology where the author truly shines, despite what was quoted above. An example of his insight:
"If [Jesus Christ] is unique in history, must He not also be so in origin?....The miracle of the Incarnation is thus fitly expressed in the miraculous entrance, and harmonizes with the miraculous departure in the Resurrection."
And this: "The Virgin birth is not impossible unless all miracles are impossible..."
In closing, his chapter on Article 17--"Of Predestination and Election"--shows an admirable wrestling with a clearly Biblical topic that has nonetheless given any number of Christians pause. Griffith-Thomas clearly understood this, and spends 20 pages discussing it.
A satisfying book for anyone interested in the origins of Anglican theology, though not always easy for those not trained in formal theology.

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