The Legacy of Jonathan Edwards

The Jonathan Edwards Center at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School is hosting a colloquium on post-Edwards theology in two days, on Friday, January 6, 2011 on the campus of TEDS.  The JEC at TEDS is a young center but is off to a fast start, having already hosted scholars Mark Noll and Richard Mueller.  Thabiti Anyabwile comes to speak in just under a month.

Any folks in the Chicago area or beyond can come to this free colloquium on Friday afternoon (starting at 3pm CST).  It’s a small but high-powered affair as you can see from the information below.  Anri Morimoto from Tokyo, Oliver Crisp, Ken Minkema, and David Kling will all be there, making it an impressive lineup.  Wheaton/Marquette/Loyola doctoral students in history and theology might really enjoy this, and it’s a great opportunity not only to hear some stimulating material but to meet some leading lights in the Edwardsean world.

Here’s the official word from the Center:

“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.

Here’s who will be at the colloquium:

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 (Hinkson Hall).

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