Sunday, May 10, 2009

Finding Treasures in the Writings of the Christian Fathers

AWAF Conference speaker D.H. Williams’ book Tradition, Scripture, and Interpretation offers readers the opportunity to see for themselves the relationships between the Christian tradition, Scripture and ministry. Williams gives readers a reliable guide to the writings of the early church in order to exhibit the important developments of the early church that illustrate its significance to evangelicals. Of the writings included in book, Williams writes, “In them lie the cornerstones of Christian authority for the church past and future.” Williams’ book helps readers navigate the plethora of writings from the early church to gain an appreciation for their value. He effectively kindles a passion among readers for the ministry and authority found in the traditions of the early church. His ultimate goal is to draw readers to the practices of the early church in order to develop a more theologically and biblically literate contemporary Christian church.

Williams shows readers that the traditions of the church are wholly compatible and complementary to the Word and charism sought in contemporary evangelicalism. Williams asserts throughout the book that the writings of the church Fathers are an essential ingredient in the practice of authentic Christianity.

There is a stated and implied responsibility in their writings to study Scripture, participate in the Lord’s Supper, contribute to the Christian community, respect the church’s authority and to serve the body of Christ. There is no sign of cheap grace, mental assent or easy-believism among the Fathers. Williams shows that in the Father’s writings are the keys to how the church started from nothing to spread throughout the world while combating severe opposition and heresies on every side.

This is an indication of the powerful message that D.H. Williams shares with evangelicals. He will be a featured speaker at the AWAF conference in early June at Trinity School for Ministry.

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