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Doctrine and Experience

Doctrine and Experience

Caught in the Crossfire of Evangelical Spiritualities

by Christopher C. Zito
Publication Date: 30/06/2016
Should evangelical spirituality be grounded in doctrine, experience, neither, or both? If in one, which, and why not the other? If in both, how might the two co-exist without cancelling out each other's distinctives? If in neither, then what practical value does either have for the Christian life? In this book, the author has combined critical research, pastoral awareness, and thoughtful reflection to show how the radicalizations of doctrine and experience have not only polarized contemporary evangelicalism into two nearly irreconcilable camps, but also has opened the door for a subtle but potent form of idolatry to creep into our midst. In an attempt to purge these idols and bridge the gap, this book contextualizes the biblical teachings and practices of our original spiritual instructors, asking the double-edged question of what it means for us today that the Word of God is normative and that the Spirit is Lord. The author concludes that evangelicals should seek an incarnate, cross-centered spirituality that is informed by meticulous attention and obedience to sound doctrine, but only as it is lived out in a deeply felt faith that is made perfect as we experience God daily in any number of ways. ""Both wings of an airplane are equally important. Despite widespread agreement that true doctrine and experience are similarly equal, Zito's opening historical survey shows how one or the other emphasis inevitably prevails. The respectful, balanced, and specific warnings against both 'bibliolatry' and 'pneumatolatry' should prove helpful to scholars and teachers from the differing wings of Evangelicalism who share Zito's longing to promote a truly balanced Christianity."" --Donald Tinder, Dean, Zinzendorf School of Doctoral Studies, Olivet University ""Zito provides a thoughtful and thorough description of the development and characteristics of these two veins of evangelical spirituality. His call for a balanced combination is, appropriately, solidly biblical and prophetically relevant. This book resonates with The ATLAS Center, a hybrid seminary-church, which seeks to foster in its students a spirituality which blends the best of academy and church."" --Susan I. Bubbers, Dean of The ATLAS Theological Center, Orlando Christopher Zito (PhD Evangelische Theologische Faculteit) is a docent of Systematic Theology at Istituto Biblico Evangelico Italiano in Rome, Italy. He is editor-in-chief of the Italian theological journal Lux Biblica, and has written a number of articles for the publication. He has served in Italy for over twenty years as a missionary, teaching, pastoring, and planting churches.
Religion & beliefs
Publication Date:
Wipf & Stock Publishers
Country of origin:
United States

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