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C.S. Lewis’ Timely Work, Carl F. H. Henry as Missional Theologian, and Ghosts Don’t Walk on Water in the Fall 2023 Midwestern Journal of Theology

Posted December 19, 2023 by Brett Fredenberg

KANSAS CITY, Mo—The Fall 2023 edition of the Midwestern Journal of Theology released on December 19, featuring works by Midwestern Seminary faculty members, doctoral students, and theologians and pastors from across the country.

From substantive interactions with C.S. Lewis and Carl F. H. Henry to biblical interpretation of texts such as Zephaniah 1 and Mark 6, the MJT seeks to provide a point of interest for any individual in the Midwestern Seminary community.

“This edition of the Midwestern Journal of Theology will not disappoint,” said President Jason Allen. “Through the wide range of topics covered in the articles and book reviews, there is something here for everyone. I continue to be grateful for our journal and the quality of work contained therein. I want to offer sincere thanks to Drs. Michael McMullen and Blake Hearson for all their work on this journal in particular.”

Michael McMullen, professor of church history and editor of the Midwestern Journal of Theology, shared of the Fall edition, “We are again blessed to publish a rich and varied assortment of articles for this issue, and we are always very grateful for the many articles we receive.”

The opening article features four seminary faculty members engaging with C.S. Lewis’ work, The Abolition of Man. As 2024 marks the 80th anniversary of the publication, McMullen noted these personal reflections on the work as “timely,” while also expressing his gratitude to the engagements from four professors: Thorvald B. Madsen, Travis Montgomery, Leslie Umstattd, and Blake Hearson.

Next, the MJT included a substantive article from Jason DeRouchie, research professor of Old Testament and biblical theology at Midwestern Seminary, titled, “Confronting Idolatry in Zephaniah 1:4-6 and in the Twenty-First Century.” In the article, DeRouchie exegetes Zephaniah 1 to show how “idolatry will result in ruin,” while simultaneously challenging readers to “be among the remnant who heeds his voice.”

Tyler Sykora, assistant professor of biblical studies at Midwestern Seminary, contributed the third article of the Journal, “Our Understanding of the Disciples’ Misunderstanding is Incomplete: Mark 6:48-50 from a Greco-Roman Perspective.” He argues, “Mark’s intention of including ‘they thought he was a ghost’ in Mark 6:49 is meant to emphasize the reality of just how much the disciples misunderstood Jesus’ identity, namely, they were willing to believe the impossible, a ghost treading on the sea, rather than the obvious, Jesus identifying himself as God ‘who alone stretched out the heavens and trampled the waves of the sea.’ (Job 9:8).”

The fourth article of the Fall 2023 edition comes from David Paul, who currently serves as a missionary with the International Mission Board. In his article, titled “Validating Pauline Emulation as a Missiological Hermeneutic in Second Timothy,” he agrees with Roland Allen’s missions philosophy in his infamous work Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours. In affirming Pauline emulation for modern missions, David Paul also seeks to show the widespread implications of such a missionary strategy.

The final article featured Taylor Lassiter, senior pastor of College Heights Baptist Church, with his article, “Kingdom Conversion, Kingdom Causes, and Kingdom Agents: The Missiology of Carl F. H. Henry.” By viewing Carl F. H. Henry’s writings as driven by the “purpose of mission,” the “promotion of mission” and the “people of mission,” Lassiter writes that contemporary evangelicals should consider Carl F. H. Henry a “missional theologian.”

As a special feature of this edition, McMullen noted, “This is a great time of rejoicing at Midwestern, for at the time of writing, we are celebrating God’s great kindness, in the recent acquisition of the Heritage Collection from Spurgeon’s College, London, UK. The details of this incredible addition of Spurgeonalia to Midwestern’s already wonderful holdings is described in our final piece, under the heading, ‘From the Spurgeon Library.’”

In addition to the scholarly articles, the MJT includes several relevant and thought-provoking book reviews, many of which were written by Midwestern Seminary doctoral students.

Midwestern Seminary’s Journal of Theology is available in print version for subscribers. To subscribe, contact the Academic Office at (816) 414-3745 or [email protected].

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


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