Heresy: A History of Defending the Truth

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9780060822149: Heresy: A History of Defending the Truth

In Heresy, leading religion expert and church historian Alister McGrath reveals the surprising history of heresy and rival forms of Christianity, arguing that the church must continue to defend what is true about Jesus. He explains that remaining faithful to Jesus’s mission and message is still the mandate of the church despite increasingly popular cries that traditional dogma is outdated and restricts individual freedom.

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From the Back Cover:

In recent years the distinction between heresy and orthodoxy has come under fire by those eager to reject the formal boundaries of sanctioned beliefs about God, Jesus, and the church. In a timely corrective to this trend, renowned church historian Alister McGrath argues that the categories of heresy and orthodoxy must be preserved.

Remaining faithful to Jesus's mission and message is still the mandate of the church despite increasingly popular cries that traditional dogma is outdated and restricts individual freedom. Overturning misconceptions throughout the book, McGrath exposes:

  • how many of the heretical beliefs and practices rejected by the church were actually more stringent and oppressive than rival orthodox claims.
  • that many theological alternatives were rejected when the church had no power to enforce one view over another, long before Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire.

In Heresy, McGrath explains why no heresy has ever been eradicated—rival beliefs only go underground and resurface in different forms. McGrath presents a powerful, compassionate, and deeply attractive orthodoxy that will equip the church to meet the challenge from renewed forms of heresy today.

About the Author:

Alister E. McGrath is a historian, biochemist, and Christian theologian born in Belfast, Northern Ireland. A longtime professor at Oxford University, he now holds the chair in theology, ministry, and education at the University of London. He is the author of several books on theology and history, including Christianity's Dangerous Idea, In the Beginning, and The Twilight of Atheism. He lives in Oxford, England, and lectures regularly in the United States.

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