Burnett, Richard E,
Are You Ready For a Real Theologian? by Richard Burnett
Few in our generation have written more perceptively about the challenges of ministry than Eugene Peterson. In a creative but lesser known work, The Wisdom of Each Other: A Conversation Between Spiritual Friends, Peterson writes to an old college friend, “Gunnar,” who contacted him after forty years of “virtual silence.” Summer 2018, Theology Matters, P. 15
Calvin and Barth on the Unity of the Church by Richard Burnett
The unity of the church concerned John Calvin so much that he wrote to Thomas Cranmer on April 1552: “The members of the Church being severed, the body lies bleeding. So much does this concern me, that, could I be of any service, I would not grudge to cross even ten seas, if need were, on account of it” (Letters 2:348). Winter 2018 Pg. 15, Theology Matters
Does Theology Matter? by the Rev. Richard Burnett, PhD.
The new executive director of Theology Matters answers the question. He maintains that what we say about God has a profound effect in shaping individuals and societies—even when the theology is unacknowledged, even when its adherents may be atheists who reject God as they conceive him. For the church, theology is not just any talk about God but our response to what God has said about himself in his Word. Theology is a necessary tool for the church to respond faithfully to God’s self-revelation. Theology, to borrow Calvin’s phrase, guides us in determining “what [we] ought especially to seek in Scripture, and to what end [we] ought to relate its contents.” Summer 2016 Theology Matters, p. 1
Who Needs Confessions of Faith? by the Rev. Richard Burnett, PhD.
Why do we have confessions of faith? There are many reasons. Some are not so obvious. But for Protestants the first and most important reason is simple: We have confessions not because we want to say more than the Bible says. We have them because we do not want to say less. Confessions arise as a result of a crisis in the church that requires a decision to be made. They emerge when the truth of the gospel is consistently contested at a specific point (or points) over a sustained period of time. Confessions, in other words, emerge out of persistent conflict over what the Scriptures teach about the Christian faith and living out that faith. Spring 2017 Theology Matters, p. 1
Learning How to Help Each Other by the Rev. Richard Burnett, PhD,
Probably more powerfully and perceptively than any churchman in modern times, Karl Barth taught that a culturally accommodated church, a church that compromises not only the content of its message, but permits itself “to abandon the form of its message and order to its own pleasure or to changes in prevailing ideological and political convictions,” is a false church. Fall 2016 Theology Matters, p. 16
Luther’s Mistress and Knowledge of Ourselves by Richard Burnett
Martin Luther had a mistress. It can be denied and has been many times. But the fact is he did, or at least he thought he did, and he struggled with her for many years, especially as a young man. There is much about this relationship we do not know, but we do know this: rightly or wrongly, he sometimes called her “Reason.” Summer 2017 Theology Matters, p.14
Does The Reformation Still Matter? by Richard Burnett, Managing Editor
“There is no question the mainline church is dead,” he said. “The only question now is whether Evangelicalism is the seven demons that come into the corpse.” This was the response I got after a long period of silence to a question I had posed to my teacher, George Lindbeck, in a course on “Comparative Ecclesiology” in the fall semester, 1992, at Yale University Divinity School.
I did not like it. I considered myself an evangelical (and still do). Nor was I ready to forsake my mainstream ecclesial inheritance. Yet even then I suspected that one reason I did not like my teacher’s verdict was because there was more truth in it than I was prepared to admit. Fall 2017 Theology Matters, p.1