Released in the UK May 2020
Released in the US May 2020
Large trade paperback | 256 Pages
9781527105188 • £13.99 $17.99
BISAC – REL067080
Mantle Nance investigates the little–known yet fascinating conflict between Trinitarianism and Unitarianism in the nineteenth century American South. It explores the lives, ministries, and theological contributions of three Southern Presbyterian pastor–scholars associated with Columbia Theological Seminary and their winsome, fruitful stands for the Trinitarian faith in response to a burgeoning Southern Unitarian movement. In a readable and engaging way, the author provides readers with intriguing history that illumines the mind and warm theology that moves the heart to adore and serve the Triune God of love.
Mantle Nance (BA, Furman University; MDiv, Reformed Theological Seminary; PhD, University of Aberdeen) is senior minister at Ballantyne Presbyterian Church and a visiting lecturer at Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina. He is married to Sally, and they have two sons, Jackson and Aaron.
If you love church history and desire to know our Triune God in a more glorious fashion, then The Adorable Trinity is a must read. I highly recommend it solely for the benefit of worshipping our majestic God, who has existed forever – Father, Son and Spirit – in constant love, communion, and glorious unity of essence and purpose.
Rod A. Culbertson
Associate Professor of Pastoral Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte, North Carolina
With interest in the Trinity blossoming today broadly in both academia and practical ministry, Mantle Nance’s contribution to the field is most welcome. He introduces us to the labors of a forgotten portion of Christendom on this provocative subject — the nineteenth–century theologians of Old Columbia Seminary—James Henley Thornwell, Thomas Smyth, and Benjamin Morgan Palmer. Tossed out with the bathwater of sectionalism, slavery, and Civil War, their almost disremembered struggles against the Unitarian rationalism of their day make the Columbians a fascinating read on so many levels. Nance does not spare them where they fall short of their own Trinitarian belief. But neither does he fail to grasp the creative core of their insight: that the Trinity is not an abstract doctrinal loci but rather an immense dynamus for both faith and life.
W. Duncan Rankin
Adjunct Professor of Systematic Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary, Houston, Texas
This book is a fascinating look at a neglected chapter in the history of the old South. The author offers an inspiring account of southern theologians’ convincing arguments that the Trinity is foundational to every aspect of Christian faith and practice. The book will be a delight to anyone interested in this era of America history.
S. Donald Fortson
Professor of Church History and Pastoral Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte, North Carolina
There is a certain lineage of southern Presbyterian theologians who, whatever their defects, nurtured a doctrine and devotion so intensely, pervasively, and uniquely trinitarian that they have long stood in need of closer study. What can account for this revival of excitement about the doctrine of the Trinity at this particular time and place? This book unlocks at least one part of the secret: these theologians and pastors knew themselves to be contending against an organized unitarian movement. By establishing this polemical context for their work, and then reading them sympathetically against this background, Nance has shed much light on an often ignored phase of American theological history.
Professor of Systematic Theology, Torrey Honors Institute, Biola University, La Mirada, California