The times they are a-changin'. As such, our theology needs to adapt--to be responsive to the changing landscape. The idea for Embracing the Past--Forging the Future: A New Generation of Wesleyan Theology came from our assessment that Wesleyan theology has yet to fully adapt to this changing landscape, and that the future of Wesleyan theology requires the bringing together of old and new voices. The difficult task of balancing between continuity and change--keeping up with the developments of our culture and staying true to the roots of our tradition--requires the dual focus of looking forward and backward simultaneously. In this volume, we have brought together contributions by young Wesleyan scholars (graduate students and junior faculty) as a way of illustrating and articulating a new generation of Wesleyan theology. These younger voices demonstrate the desire to push Wesleyan theology in new directions. Additionally, we have included contributions from senior scholars who have been doing important work and who have already made significant contributions to Wesleyan theology. This is not simply the ""old guard"" but the voices of scholars who continue to make a profound impact on Wesleyan theology. ""This is an indispensable source for anyone interested in the future of the Methodist tradition . . . It deserves a close reading by all who have a stake in the future of the tradition, most especially by those who would argue for a very different way forward . . . This volume lays down a marker for the uniqueness of Methodism and the need to sharpen its identity in the light of recent cultural developments."" --William J. Abraham, Outler Professor of Wesley Studies, Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University ""These are exciting days for Wesleyan theology, and these essays testify well to the winsomeness of the Wesleyan way. Exploring what is 'post, ' 'past, ' or 'plural, ' these young scholars (and a few seasoned voices too) express the breadth and depth of what this tradition's theological vision now offers the contemporary world."" --Thomas Jay Oord, coeditor of Postmodern and Wesleyan? and author of The Uncontrolling Love of God ""Every Christian tradition that seeks to be viable for the twenty-first century will have to do what these younger Wesleyan theologians attempt in this volume: embrace their past while forging a plausible future. Wesleyans will argue with each other about the proposals herein, but that is precisely why books like these are necessary and how traditions are forged."" --Amos Yong, Professor of Theology and Mission, Fuller Theological Seminary ""If the future of Wesleyan theology rests in the hands of bright and creative young scholars like those who edited and contribute to this volume, then Wesleyanism has a very bright future."" --Mark H. Mann, Director, Wesleyan Center, Point Loma Press, Honors Program, Point Loma Nazarene University John M. Bechtold is a PhD candidate at the University of Denver/Iliff School of Theology Joint Doctoral Program in Theology, Philosophy, and Cultural Theory. His work focuses on the interplay between Christian theology and German Idealist philosophy. He is a frequent contributor to scholastic societies including the Wesleyan Theological Society, the Wesleyan Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Religion. Wm. Andrew Schwartz is a PhD candidate in Philosophy of Religion and Theology at Claremont Graduate University, and Managing Director of the Center for Process Studies. He holds an MA in philosophy from CGU and an MA in theology from Nazarene Theological Seminary. An active member of the Wesleyan Theological Society, Andrew's academic interests include comparative philosophy and theology, Wesleyan theology, and religious pluralism.
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