Skip Navigation

Alister McGrath

Why Doctrine Is Inevitable--And a Good Thing Too! by Alister McGrath
McGrath responds to those who seek a doctrine-less Christian faith in which people simply trust and love God. "There thus exist two pressures which make dogma inevitable: the human desire to make sense of things and extend the horizons of understanding; and the social need for the church to offer a definition of its identity and boundaries...."  Jan/Feb 2004 Theology Matters, p. 1

Doctrine and Ethics by Alister McGrath, professor of Christian doctrine and ethics at Oxford University, England.  Reprinted with permission from the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, Vol 34, No. 2, June 1991.  McGrath writes, "A recovery of Christian doctrine is fundamental to a recovery of Christian ethics...Beliefs are important because they claim to describe the way things are.  they assert that they declare the truth about reality.  But beliefs are not just ideas that are absorbed by our minds and that have no further effect upon us.  They affect what we do and what we feel.  They influence our hopes and fears.  They determine the way we behave."  McGrath looks specifically at the doctrine of justification by faith and the doctrine of original sin.  Jul/Aug 1995 Theology Matters   p. 1