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New Thornbury book spotlights theology and influence of Carl F.H. Henry


"Recovering Classic Evangelicalism: Applying the Wisdom and Vision of Carl F.H. Henry" by Gregory A. Thornbury is now available.

JACKSON, Tenn.April 29, 2013 – A new book by Gregory A. Thornbury explores the theology of Carl F.H. Henry and how his ideas of “classic evangelicalism” can unite today’s church.

“Recovering Classic Evangelicalism: Applying the Wisdom and Vision of Carl F.H. Henry,” published by Crossway, is what Thornbury described as his witness -- his “stones piled by the river Jordan” – and his attempt to provide a definition and marker for classic evangelicalism.

“What I wanted to do was paraphrase the best of Henry’s theological work and give it a new hearing for a new audience,” said Thornbury, dean of the School of Theology at Union University.

Henry, a theologian, journalist and the first editor of Christianity Today, died in 2003 at age 90. He is the author of the influential “God, Revelation and Authority” series of books, among others.

“It’s been almost a decade since Carl Henry passed, and it’s time to revisit his legacy,” Thornbury said. “I think that’s an appropriate amount of distance to be able to get some perspective about it. Henry’s thoughts, ideas and theology were what gave the neo-evangelical movement so much of its spark and verve, initially.”

Written mainly for theologians, pastors and church leaders, “Recovering Classic Evangelicalism” defends some of Henry’s ideas – and the significance of Henry’s influence -- that are currently under attack by evangelical scholars, Thornbury said.

Thornbury, a longtime admirer of Henry, thinks that despite what others may say, Henry’s theology is still relevant for Christians today.

“I have seen a time in which giants roamed the land, and like all travelers who sojourn in magical places, I long for myself and for my fellow evangelicals to return to the world of Henry – where the promise and power of evangelicalism seemed to be just within reach,” he writes in the book’s first chapter.

Barry H. Corey, president of Biola University, described “Recovering Classic Evangelicalism” as an “important, erudite work that should be read by anyone who longs for a return to a robust, vital evangelicalism.”

“At a time when Protestant Christianity in the West is on the decline, and evangelicalism is ever more fractured, Thornbury has something important to say – imploring us to re-form an evangelicalism with sturdy foundations, a confident connection to our doctrinal heritage and a winsome engagement with the broader world,” Coley wrote in an endorsement.

The book is Thornbury’s third. He is also the co-author of “Who Will Be Saved? Defending the Biblical Understanding of God, Salvation, and Evangelism” and the co-editor of “Shaping a Christian Worldview: The Foundations of Christian Higher Education.”

The book is available in LifeWay Christian Stores or at online retailers such as Amazon.com.


Media contact: Tim Ellsworth, news@uu.edu, 731-661-5215

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