Khaled Anatolios, a noted expert on the development of Nicene theology, offers a historically informed theological study of the development of the doctrine of the Trinity, showing its relevance to Christian life and thought today. According to Anatolios, the development of trinitarian doctrine involved a global interpretation of Christian faith as a whole. Consequently, the meaning of trinitarian doctrine is to be found in a reappropriation of the process of this development, such that the entirety of Christian existence is interpreted in a trinitarian manner. The book provides essential resources for this reappropriation by identifying the network of theological issues that comprise the "systematic scope" of Nicene theology, focusing especially on the trinitarian perspectives of three major theologians: Athanasius, Gregory of Nyssa, and Augustine. It includes a foreword by Brian E. Daley.
Khaled Anatolios (PhD, Boston College) is professor of historical theology in the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. He is the author of Athanasius: The Coherence of His Thought and the Athanasius volume in Routledge's Early Church Fathers series. Anatolios was named a Henry Luce III Fellow in Theology for 2011-2012. He is also on the steering committee of the Boston Colloquy in Historical Theology and on the board of directors of the Pappas Patristic Institute at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology.
Khaled Anatolios's new book is a welcome addition to the flood of revisionary scholarship on patristic trinitarian theology in the last twenty years. Anatolios's treatment helps us to see the perennial importance of the key figures of the fourth and fifth centuries for all of our thought on this central mystery of the Christian faith. The clarity of his exposition and his constant desire to draw out the consequences of historical exposition mean that this book will find a treasured place on the bookshelves of theologians and theology students across the board.
Bede Professor of Catholic Theology, Durham University
With this impressive book, Khaled Anatolios takes his place alongside luminaries like R. P. C. Hanson and Lewis Ayres as one of the most distinguished interpreters of Nicaea and its legacy. Especially important is his sympathetic interpretation of Athanasius. For anyone who wants to understand Nicene Christianity and its relevance for today, Anatolios is quite simply indispensable.
Hazel Thompson McCord Professor of Systematic Theology, Princeton Theological Seminary
Khaled Anatolios puts the 'theology' back into 'historical theology,' explaining how the doctrine of the Trinity emerged out of an effort to account for the full sweep of Christian scripture and worship. The result is a brilliant book of spiritual as well as scholarly significance.
-R. R. Reno,
Professor of Theology, Creighton University; senior editor, First Things
This volume is a welcome addition to the trinitarian renaissance of the last decades. Transcending the distinction between 'historical' and 'systematic,' Anatolios guides us through the work of three key fathers--Athanasius, Gregory of Nyssa, and Augustine. This opens to us the broader coherence of a trinitarian theology, which touches every aspect of Christian existence under the primacy of Christ, and a clear theological epistemology. Retrieving the vision of those who gave shape to Nicaea in this way will, I am sure, bear much fruit and give great shape to Christian vision today.
Dean and Professor of Patristics, St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary
[Retrieving Nicaea is] a work of profound theology: a brilliant summary of the conflicts and debates that originally led the church to articulate just what God is for a Christian, as substance and person, and of the beginnings of some accepted answers to the questions that troubled many believers in the controversies surrounding the Council of Nicaea (325)...As Prof. Anatolios reminds us, we are blessed by the fact that these first theologians, these first writers to 'talk about God' in what we call trinitarian terms, were also great theologians: great thinkers, great writers, individuals of great devotion and great faith. As we attempt to carry on their work today, joining intelligently and generously in their debates is probably the best place for any of us to begin. We can learn from them, perhaps better than from many more recent thinkers, both the terms of the discussion and the spirit of devout and eloquent brilliance that such a discussion inevitably requires of us if we are to carry it on well. This book, in fact, does just that, and does it supremely well; it brings us--with clarity and insight--face to face with the origins of trinitarian doctrine as a theological conversation on which our salvation, in one way or another, ultimately depends.
-Brian E. Daley,
SJ, University of Notre Dame
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