Faith Seeking Understanding: Essays in Memory of Paul Brand and Ralph D. Winter

by David Marshall, ed.

David Marshall, ed. William Carey Library, 1605 E. Elizabeth Street, Pasadena, CA 91104, 229 pages,2012, $12.79.

Reviewed by Robert L. Gallagher, director of the MA in Intercultural Studies program, and associate professor of intercultural studies at Wheaton College Graduate School.

We live in an age when people want short answers to hard questions. Fifty years ago, seekers of truth asked questions such as: Is Christianity rational? Is there a God? Is the Bible true? And, do science and scripture agree? Nowadays, the questions are very different: Why do I hurt? Why did my family break apart? Why is there so much suffering in the world? Does your belief transform lives? Does your religion help society, especially those who are marginalized? And why should I trust you?

Faith and intellectual investigation are often seen as an antithesis to one another. David Marshall’s Faith Seeking Understanding is a collection of seventeen essays (in four parts: Tutors, Christ in Culture, Christ in History, and Christ in Philosophy and Science) that attempts to bring the faith and intellectual investigation together, and provide a salve to the contemporary irritating questions through a cavalcade of diverse and influential Christian thinkers such as anthropologist Miriam Adeney, historian of science Allan Chapman, astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez, philosopher of religion Alvin Plantinga, sociologist of religion Rodney Stark, author and speaker Philip Yancey, and Chinese social activist Yuan Zhiming.

Motivated by the lives of Paul W. Brand—a British surgeon working in India who developed tendon transfer techniques for use in the hands of those with leprosy (1914-2003)—and Ralph D. Winter—an American missiologist best known as the advocate of outreach among unreached people groups (1924-2009), the contributing intellectuals probe the questions of our time from the unique stories of their Christian faith. Some of the stories explore an understanding of the world in relation to what the essayist already believes, while other writers seek to comprehend what they yearn for. What is intriguing about the volume is that it delivers particular specificity of each author’s Christian intellectual-faith journey with a wealth of insights in such a small space. Indeed, this book is a fitting memorial to Paul Brand and Ralph Winter—two great men of God in faith and reason.

Check these titles:
Brand, Paul and Philip Yancey. 1993. Pain: The Gift Nobody Wants. New York: HarperCollins.

Winter, Roberta H. 2011. I Will Do a New Thing: The U.S. Center for World Mission and Beyond. Pasadena, Calif.: William Carey Library.


EMQ, Vol. 49, No. 4, pp. 496-497. Copyright  © 2013 Billy Graham Center.  All rights reserved. Not to be reproduced or copied in any form without written permission from EMIS.


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