Midwestern Seminary released its Fall 2017 issue of the Midwestern Journal of Theology, entitled “The Reformation and Later Controversies,” on Nov. 30, featuring works by several of the school’s faculty and doctoral students. The fall edition addresses topics such as the definition of Sola Scriptura, Spurgeon’s endorsement of using lament psalms in public worship, and a debate on the atonement from 1987 between Paige Patterson and Fisher Humphreys.

President Jason Allen said of the Journal’s recently-released edition, “This publication of the Midwestern Journal of Theology is fitting in light of the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. In it, our readers will be introduced to the scholarship of Matthew Barrett, one of our newest colleagues and faculty members, as well as one of our longtime faculty members, Thomas Johnston, and our Provost, Jason Duesing.

“Each of these men is uniquely talented and skilled for training the next generation of pastors and ministry leaders for service in the local church. They possess a tremendous heart for ministry and their students, but they also are among the brightest minds in theological education today. In these journal articles, I believe our readers will note the deep level of quality instruction our students receive as they study for ministry at Midwestern Seminary. I am grateful to God for these men.”

Midwestern Seminary’s Journal editor, Michael McMullen—who also serves as Midwestern Seminary’s professor of Church History—noted that this issue of MJT seeks to highlight various aspects of the Reformation as well as some later controversies.

The MJT’s selections begin with Barrett’s theological commentary on the question, “What is Sola Scriptura,” which is also the article’s title. In the piece, Barrett explores the meaning of the Reformation-era staple as well as the fact that it is as relevant today as it was in the 16th century.

This essay is followed by an article from guest writer, Octavio Javier Esqueda, who is professor of Christian higher education in the doctoral programs at the Talbot School of Theology. Entitled, “The Reformation in Light of a Christian Formation Perspective,” this article delves into six positive and six negative legacies from the Reformation that have impacted the perspective and practice of Christian formation.

Next in the Journal is Johnston’s article, “The Protestant Reformation and the Marriage of Clergy.” Within the text, the Midwestern Seminary professor of evangelism posits that after the Protestant break from the Catholic Church, the marriage of clergy members served as a practical outworking and symbol of justification by faith, as opposed to justification by works. Additionally, he claims it was an honorable estate to do so.

Barrett, who is Midwestern Seminary’s associate professor of Christian Theology, followed Johnston with a work entitled, “Balancing Sola Scriptura and Catholic Trinitarianism: John Calvin, Nicene Complexity, and the Necessary Tension of Dogmatics.” In the article, Barrett “pokes at the tension between Calvin’s affirmation of Sola Scriptura and his contested Trinitarianism” to answer the larger question: “How do we balance Sola Scriptura with catholicity?”

Additionally, Duesing contributed the article, “Humphreys/Patterson – 1987: A Southern Baptist Debate on the Atonement.” In the article, he examines on the debate’s 30th anniversary an analysis of the significance of the event for both the SBC in 1987 and for evangelicals inside and outside of the SBC in the present day.

Other essays in the fall edition include: “‘Co-Equal, Co-Essential, Co-Eternal’: Introducing Anne Dutton and her Reflections on the Trinity” by Michael A. G. Haykin, professor of church history and biblical spirituality at Southern Seminary in Louisville, Ky.; and “’Consolation for the Despairing:’ C.H. Spurgeon’s Endorsement of Lament Psalms in Public Worship” by guest writer Alan J. Thompson, lecturer in New Testament and Biblical Theology at Sydney Missionary & Bible College, Sydney, Australia.

In addition to the scholarly articles, readers will find several relevant and thought-provoking book reviews, many of which were written by Midwestern Seminary doctoral students as well.

Duesing commented that, “This issue of MJT marks another quality edition by editor Michael McMullen and, thanks to the free digital publication option, is one that many will read. It has been a joy to watch the MJT rise a desired venue for scholars to publish their research, and look forward to future issues in the months ahead.”

Midwestern Seminary’s Journal of Theology is available in print version for subscribers. To subscribe, contact Academic Office at (816) 414-3745 or kfreeman@mbts.edu.

Additionally, guests may view the issue in its entirety for free on the seminary’s website, www.mbts.edu/journal.