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Systematic Theology (Volume 1)Grounded in Holy Scripture and understood in light of the Church

Systematic Theology (Volume 1)

Grounded in Holy Scripture and understood in light of the Church

Douglas F. Kelly
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I have mixed feelings about this book. On the one hand it is very interesting to read as Kelly quotes a lot from those I would not normally read e.g. Church Fathers, Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic. Some of the quotes are excellent. On the other hand, there are times when it feels like I was simply reading a lot of quotes, which were often difficult to understand. This made the book feel a little like a digest of Christian thought. Kelly quotes liberally from French theologians and cultural historians - something I am obviously not able to do. So in some ways I am thankful for the 'digest' nature of the book. However, as an experiment I briefly tried to read portions of the book by just reading Kelly's own words. It seems to me that Kelly could have put much of the thought of the quotes in his own words and simply foot noted them. I think this would have made a better book.

Also, the placement of appendices after each chapter disrupts the flow of the book. Much better to have them at the end.

Also, Kelly's chapter in the influence of Enlightenment thought had loads of quotes but only a little discussion of 'influence'. The balance seemed a little off.

But - his chapter on God revealing himself through the Covenant of Grace was amazing.

Given that Prof Kelly is writing two more volumes I would suggest that perhaps an abridgment could be made into a 1 volume ST with many of the quotes summarized.

All to say, I have mixed feelings. Some portions (when Prof Kelly himself writes) had my mind and heart praising God. Some portions (many of the Appendices and long quotes) had me thinking "why am I reading this"?

In short, I think this book needs to be read along side other ST's such as Robert Reymond's and/or Wayne Grudem's. However, if I was to recommend an ST to the man or woman in the pew it would not be Douglas Kelly's ST Vol. 1 - better wait for the abridged version of his 3 volume work.

Phil Taylor, Belfast

Where can one find a treatise on the Truine God that is without question faithfully and confessional Reformed and profoundly aware of the broad reach of historical reflection from the wider Church? Professor Kelly's achievement has put a mark in the 21st century that will force all serious students of theology to consider a conservative Reformed viewpoint with due diligence. Here is a theology that serves the church, displays the majesty of God and humbles the heart of all who contemplate Him. I am using this for my class on theology and look forward to his forthcoming work.

Todd Baucum, Enterprise, AL

I bought this book by way of an exploration into the subject of the Trinity; we have a ministry to the cults, and I'm writing a Christian response to the Jehovah's Witnesses publication, "Should You Believe in the Trinity". I found this book to be an excellent resource on the subject of the Triune God. I would recommend this book, without reservation, specifically on the nature of God and the attendant issues surrounding the Trinity.

Dr Thaddeus Irvine, Londonderry, Northern Ireland.

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