Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Today's Lecture at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

I gave a lecture today entitled "Augustine and the Secular in Christendom and Modernity" at the Scripture and Ministry Lecture Series sponsored by the Carl F. H. Henry Center for Theological Reflection at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. The lecture was live blogged and you can see the notes here.

Wayne Johnson, Doug Sweeney, Geoff Fulkerson and Owen Strachan have been extremely gracious hosts and have made my stay a real pleasure. It has been interesting to see the work of the Henry Center first hand and I'm particularly impressed by the work they are doing to bring together the church and academy and encourage theological reflection by working pastors.

I surprised a lot of people there by taking a much more conservative line than they expected on the basis of my last book. But readers of this blog wouldn't have been surprised by most of what I had to say. I do find St. Augustine extremely helpful to current debates and the reaction I received reinforced my sense that his thought can help us cr'itique modernity in a much deeper and profound way than we often do. We did have some debate about whether my basically Marxist definition of social justice was the only one or the right one. A few people said "I like the phrase "social justice" but I don't mean that by it." There was some good dialogue and some serious thinking going on. Sounds like what the academy should be like to me.

And yes, I did say that I almost titled the talk "How I Lost My Faith . . . in Social Justice." At far as I know, no heart attacks occurred during that part of the presentation.

1 comment:

Matthew Anderson said...

Sad I missed the livestream, but I'm looking forward to hearing it when they post the audio.

Keep up the interesting work.