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By Eerdmans / 1999–2008/
The Encyclopedia of Christianity is a monumental reference work that addresses the broad interest in Christianity and religion around the world today. Comprehensive, up to date, reflecting the highest standards in scholarship, yet intended for a wide range of readers, the Encyclopedia of Christianity describes the Christian faith and community in their myriad forms today and throughout the 2,000 years of Christian history. The Encyclopedia of Christianity also looks outward beyond Christianity, considering other world religions and philosophies as it paints the overall religious and sociocultural picture in which the Christian church now finds itself in the new millennium.
Written by leading scholars from many countries and cultural backgrounds, the more than 1,700 articles in the complete Encyclopedia of Christianity depict Christianity in its global context. Separate articles for every continent and for over 170 countries examine both the history and the current situation of the Christian faith worldwide. The Encyclopedia of Christianity also portrays Christianity in its widest ecumenical context. Major articles detail Christianity’s rich spiritual and theological diversity in order to inform readers about religious traditions and perspectives beyond their own ecclesiastical frameworks.
In its portrayal of Christianity, the Encyclopedia of Christianity also takes into account the current sociocultural context, including other world religions, secular philosophies, cultural trends, and modern political and economic forces. Covering such current topics as abortion, atheism, Islam, modernity, and psychoanalysis, these articles describe the multifarious settings in which the Christian church today must maintain a credible witness to the ancient gospel. Finally, the Encyclopedia of Christianity presents Christianity in its rich historical context, starting with the biblical tradition and showing how the apostolic tradition developed and how the church has sought throughout history to keep faith with its traditions while engaging the world around it.
The appearance of the Encyclopedia of Christianity is a major publishing event.… Treatment of standard subjects in theology, Scripture, the history of Christianity, world religions, and contemporary ethics is superb
—Mark A. Noll, Wheaton College
In a time when serious theological education is often lacking, this great reference work, basic and detailed at the same time, is of immense help for the study of theology, for practical church work, and for general education.
—Hans Küng, University of Tübingen
An outstanding international collegium of editors, consultants, and contributors has brought together a vast amount of information in an accessible, readable form in the Encyclopedia of Christianity.
—Thomas C. Oden
Articles cover a wide range of topics that will interest those studying Christianity, comparative religion, theology, and ethics.… Particularly helpful are articles on social movements (such as the civil rights movement): These, along with the statistical and cultural information, provide a cultural-critical emphasis instead of only disembodied ideas. The articles also cut across all branches of Christianity. Cross-references are easy to use, and the English translation is excellent. Should interest anyone who wants to emphasize both history and comparative religion when studying Christianity
—Religious Studies Review
By all counts, EC looks to be the standard encyclopedia for some years to come…. It is a worthy investment for the serious theologian, because it will be the kind of resource that one will reach for first and often, both to explore new aspects of theology and to review old ones.
Large and impressive volume.… The layout is clear and uncluttered with unobtrusive cross-references and systematic exposition using frequent subheadings. Overall, a Herculean work of synthesis. . . .
—Journal of Religious History
The quality of scholarship combined with the unique approach of providing global, ecumenical, sociocultural, and historical context makes this work an essential purchase.
Sets the standard for reference works of this kind. . . . Essential; this is possibly the best encyclopedic reference on Christianity.
—William P. Collins, Library of Congress in Library Journal
A timely and ambitious project that brings together theology and the social sciences in a fresh and accessible format.
—Ellen T. Charry, Theology Today
Not only reliable but interesting—a rare feat for an encyclopedia. Its range is very broad; at the same time the articles maintain considerable depth.
—Robert M. Grant, University of Chicago Divinity School
A major resource. . . . Necessary for libraries, students, and teachers.
—Henry Chadwick, Cambridge University
This monumental work based on the German Evangelisches Kirchenlexikon features many enhancements and additions of special value to English speaking users.… When the five-volume set is complete it will form a fresh and comprehensive reference package on Christianity past and present. The work combines quality scholarship with accessibility for the ordinary user.
For students and scholars needing quick access to reliable information on all manner of Christian subjects, this is certainly the tool to have. . . .
—Dialogue & Alliance
Erwin Fahlbusch was Honorary Professor in the Department of Systematic Theology the Faculty of Protestant Theology at the University of Frankfurt.
Jan Milic Lochman was an ordained a minister in the Evangelical Church and he taught philosophy of religion and systematic theology at the Comenius Faculty of Protestant Theology in Prague.
John Mbiti is a Christian religious philosopher. He is an ordained Anglican priest and received his doctorate in 1963 at the University of Cambridge.
Jaroslav Pelikan was Sterling Professor of History Emeritus at Yale University. He is the author of more than thirty books, including Jesus Through the Centuries. He has received the Jefferson Award of the National Endowment for the Humanities, the highest honor conferred by the U.S. government on a scholar of the humanities.
Lukas Vischer was professor emeritus of ecumenical theology at Evangelical Reformed Theological Faculty of Berne, Switzerland.