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Building A Theological Vocabulary

February 14, 2017

This semester I have been carrying in my academic briefcase a short reference work titled POCKET DICTIONARY OF THEOLOGICAL TERMS Edited by Stanley Grenz, David Guretzki and Cherith Fee Nordling (Inter-Varsity Press, 1999). Over and over as students have needed theological definitions to names.terms and  phrases  that come up in class lectures, readings or in assignments and this has been the perfect tool. The book contains over 300 entries which includes the foreign language terms so common in philosophy and Theology as well as concise explanations of movements and theological traditions. The dictionary covers the various perspectives with equal care from the “Wesleyan Quadrilateral” to the “Westminster Confession and Catechisms” (p. 121). Special value is added by the cross referencing which allows for ideas to be connected and further explored. Biblical citations are included when specially valuable but this work does not include a Scriptural concordance which allows the book to be complete in only 122 pages. The scholarly pedigree of Dr. Grenz who was professor of Theology at Cary Hall/Regent College in British Columbia and Professor Guretzki from Briercrest Bible College are impeccable and insure trustworthiness. If you teach using theological terms this is an invaluable tool to help your students self-discover the answer to their own question,”what does that term mean?” as well as build their vocabulary in the process. My copy is going to continue to reside in my briefcase for years to come!

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