About Providence, Divine Action and the Church

In this blog, Terry J. Wright posts thoughts and shares research on the Christian doctrine of providence. This doctrine testifies to God’s provision for all things through creation’s high priest, the man Christ Jesus. However, the precise meaning and manner of this provision is a perpetually open question, and this blog is a forum for discussion of the many issues relating to providence and the place of the Church within God’s action.

Monday, 20 December 2010

Book Review: Charles M. Wood, The Question of Providence

Charles M. Wood, The Question of Providence (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2008)

The latest edition of International Journal of Systematic Theology features my review of Charles Wood's The Question of Providence. This is my concluding paragraph:

Wood’s The Question of Providence is a welcome addition to studies of divine providence, not least because genuine insight pervades each chapter and is communicated with admirable clarity. That said, it is no introduction to the subject,and much of what is reasoned assumes prior knowledge of wider conversations. It is disappointing to note that in what is already a slim volume, two of the five chapters have already seen publication elsewhere. Moreover, they are insufficiently integrated with the remaining three, which themselves could easily be distinct papers. There appear to be very few actual proposals for developing the doctrine of providence beyond whatWood suggests in chapter 4; and the impact of these is lessened, in my view, by the final chapter’s analysis of the Federal Council report, which would have been better placed earlier. The overall impression from these five, intelligent essays is that Wood mainly is arguing for the need to formulate the doctrine of providence afresh: and to that end, he succeeds.

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