Miroslav Volf to Speak at Concordia Seminary

o-MIROSLAV-VOLF-facebook-3Well-known scholar, theologian and public intellectual Miroslav Volf, the Henry B. Wright Professor of Systematic Theology at Yale University, will offer his perspective on the legacy of the Reformation and its 500th anniversary in a lecture entitled, “Memory and Reconciliation” at Concordia Seminary’s fifth annual Reformation500 speaker series at 7 p.m. April 11, 2016, in Werner Auditorium.

Volf is the founding director of the Yale Center for Faith & Culture. He has authored numerous books, including A Public Faith: How Followers of Christ Should Serve the Common Good (2011); Captive to the Word of God: Engaging the Scriptures for Contemporary Theological Reflection(2010); Free of Charge: Giving and Forgiving in a Culture Stripped of Grace (2006), which was the Archbishop of Canterbury Lenten book for 2006; Exclusion and Embrace: A Theological Exploration of Identity, Otherness, and Reconciliation (1996), a winner of the 2002 Grawemeyer Award; and After Our Likeness: The Church as the Image of the Trinity(1998), winner of the Christianity Today book award.

Volf also has received many prestigious lectureships including the Dudleian Lecture at Harvard; the Chavasse Lectures, Oxford; the Waldenstroem Lectures, Stockholm; the Gray Lectures, Duke University; and the Stob Lectures, Calvin College. He has been featured on National Public Radio’s Speaking of Faith and Public Television’s Religion and Ethics NewsWeekly.

The spirit of the Reformation’s teaching on faith is rich theme throughout Volf’s writings:

“Faith is an expression of the fact that we exist so that the infinite God can dwell in us and work through us for the well-being of the whole creation. If faith denies anything, it denies that we are tiny, self-obsessed specks of matter who are reaching for the stars but remain hopelessly nailed to the earth stuck in our own self-absorption. Faith is the first part of the bridge from self-centeredness to generosity.” — Free of Charge: Giving and Forgiving in a Culture Stripped of Grace (2006)

verticalreformation500The Center for Reformation Research and Concordia Seminary began commemorations for the Reformation Quincentenary by sponsoring an annual speaker series aimed at the St. Louis community to offer varying perspectives on the significance of the Reformation. Oswald Bayer began the series in 2012 with “A Public Mystery.”  Subsequent years included perspectives from Fr. Jared Wicks, S.J., historian Steven Ozment and Tullian Tchividjian.

This lecture is free of charge and open to the public. For more information, please contact Continuing Education at 314-505-7486 or email ce@csl.edu.

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1 Comment

  1. Rick Strickert April 7, 2016
    Reply

    So after last year’s speaker, Tullian Tchividjian, and “his own legacy of American Christianity and ministry,” CSL intends to bring in Miroslav Volf?!?

    Not surprisingly unmentioned in the article is Volf’s 2012 book, Allah: A Christian Response, which Volf dedicates: “To my father, a Pentecostal minister who admired Muslims, and taught me as a boy that they worship the same God as we do.”

    And in A review of the book “Allah, a Christian response”, Paul Dan writes:

    “In the introduction (p. 13) Miroslav Volf announces [to] the reader that the goal of his writing is an exercise of political theology. At page 14, the full objective is affirmed. In a broader sense, the primary purpose of the book is politics. As we shall see as our review progresses Volf’s way of using religion for political ends becomes quite ruthless (p. 14-15). He behaves like a special envoy to the Middle East, forcing the reader to accept Muslim religious tenets (p.94). But at times, Volf almost becomes authoritarian. He employs something akin to car sales techniques such as half-truths and false analogies. Above all, Volf espouses grave heresies.

    “Chrislam is Volf’s political theology in this work. He does not explicitly call it so, but he clearly fleshes it out. The thesis of the book is that Allah and the God of the Bible are one and the same person. He conditions the world’s peace by bringing together Christians and Muslims in the mix of Chrislam (p. 8,9). In order to achieve his purpose, the author tries to gradually persuade the reader with his combination of politics and pseudo theology. However, he does not shy away from bluntly imposing his views as well. It is important for the reader to identify his method of persistent, cunning persuasion (almost Luciferian in nature), at an early stage….

    “Volf appeals to Martin Luther. He acknowledges that Luther said that Christians and Muslims worship the same God because the reformer was under the threat of Turkish conquest (p. 60). Luther denies that the Muslims are saved as a result of their faith, which Volf does not like. As a result, he cites Erasmus of Rotterdam to counteract Luther. What did Erasmus say about the Turks? He claimed that the Turks are half Christians (p. 73). Then Volf asserts that Muslims can be saved even while having wrong convictions about God, and that their belief in the Almightiness of God is good enough.”

    How quickly CSL appears to have forgotten the Yankee Stadium and Newtown heresies. 🙁

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