Reformed and Always Reforming:
The Postconservative Approach to Evangelical Theology
As Roger Olson notes in his Introduction, this volume has a simple but controversial thesis: "It is possible to be more evangelical by being less conservative." Just as some have made a similar case with regard to social ethics, Olson intends to do the same for theology.
He suggests that postconservative evangelicalism is less a defined movement than a "mood" or "style of doing theology"--characterized chiefly by a certain openness of mind that allows for the reconsideration of received tradition (without allowing that tradition to predetermine doctrinal correctness). Among the theologians who illustrate that approach are John R. Franke, Stanley Grenz, Nancey Murphy, Clark H. Pinnock, Kevin J. Vanhoozer, and Miroslav Volf.
Olson suggests that postconservative evangelicals emphasize the transformative nature of an encounter with God rather than the idea of propositional revelation. In successive chapters, he develops related themes such as the importance of narrative theology, the encounter with postmodernism, and the task of revisioning theology.
Scholars and clergy alike will find here an original study that provides an insightful account of contemporary postconservative evangelical theology, its creative and influential adherents, and their multifaceted approaches to theological reflection.