The Doctrine of Humanity, By Charles Sherlock
The Doctrine of Humanity
  • Length: 303 pages
  • Dimensions: 6 × 9 in
  • Published: January 23, 1997
  • Imprint: IVP Academic
  • Item Code: 1535
  • ISBN: 9780830815357

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At the end of the twentieth century the forces of race, gender, ethnicity, culture, social status, life-style and sexual preference threaten to disassemble any notion of universal "human nature" or "human condition." In light of this historical moment, the Christian doctrine of human nature is ripe for rethinking and reformulation.

Charles Sherlock sees this theological task as demanding a "double focus." To reflect on the subject of human nature, he says, is like "moving around the different areas of an ellipse with two focal points": humans as made in the image of God and the particular realities of human existence. Both must be brought into sharper, more detailed focus in our quest to understand human nature.

The result of Sherlock's "double focus" is The Doctrine of Humanity. Sherlock notably engages the communal dimension of humanity in its social, creational and cultural aspects before examining the human person as individual, as male and female, and as whole being. He offers a timely and engaging look at what it means to be human on the continuum between our creation in the divine image and our recreation in the image of Christ.

"This series has been around for over a decade now and has established itself as providing learned yet accessible treatments of key topics in systematic theology. The authors are not only fine theological thinkers, they are also passionate churchmen with a love for God's people and a desire to see the church grow in her knowledge of grace. Each volume blends exegesis, theological synthesis and judicious dialogue with the history of theology to provide an excellent treatment of the chosen topic. Highly recommended for thoughtful Christians who want to deepen their knowledge of Christian theology."

Carl R. Trueman, Paul Woolley Professor of Church History, Westminster Theological Seminary

"Read everything in the IVP Contours of Theology series. Pure gold."

Kevin DeYoung, senior pastor at University Reformed Church in East Lansing, Michigan

"Often insightful . . . a helpful complement to other treatments of anthropology."

Bibliotheca Sacra


Series preface
Focus 1: Made in the Image of God
1. The Image of God in Ancient Israel
2. The Image of God Renewed in Christ
3. The Image of God in Christian Thought
Focus 2A: The Human Race
4. Human Life in Society
5. Human Life in Creation
6. Human Culture
Focus 2B: The Human Person
7. The Unique Person
8. Being a Woman
9. Being a Man
10. The Whole Person

Conclusion: This Sporting Life

Appendix 1: The Transmission of Sin

Appendix 2: Inclusive Language and Being Human.





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Charles Sherlock, an Australian theologian, is Executive Officer of the Australian and New Zealand Association of Theological Schools, Executive Officer for the Board of Ministry of the Anglican Diocese of Bendigo and Regional Coordinator (Oceania) for the Anglican Communion's "Bible in the Life of the Church" project. He has also written The God Who Fights: The War Tradition in Holy Scripture (Edwin Mellen).