2020/02/17-21 Dr. Adriaan Neele’s “Theology of Jonathan Edwards”《愛德華茲神學》課程簡介 Course description (excerpted from course syllabus) and tentative schedule for PRTS in Asia 2020 Feb. “Edwards” course:
This course offers an introduction to Jonathan Edwards’s understanding and articulation of spirituality in the context of his time.
Jonathan Edwards (1703-58) is rightly called one of the most influential theologians of his time and beyond. In the course we will explore Edwards’ understanding of the work of the Holy Spirit, spiritual awakenings and renewal,spiritual discernment and fruits of the Spirit. Trajectories and texts of intellectual history will be considered related to Edwards’ articulation of spirituality together with his treatises such as “A Treatise Concerning Religious Affections.” This treatise is Edwards’s most penetrating interpretation of the awakenings of his time, not to mention one of the most penetrating of any time. In this work he lays out his psychology of affections, which encompasses both understanding and will and involves the total range of human faculties. Answering critics of the revival, Edwards discusses at length a series of “negative” signs, or unreliable criteria for judging the graciousness of affections. Finally, and most famously, he provides twelve “positive” signs for self- examination. The twelfth sign, which Edwards gives the fullest treatment, is the importance of Christian practice as evidence of the state of the heart. Here, for Edwards, is the ultimate standard for visible sainthood. Furthermore, we will examine sermons such as, A History of the Work of Redemption, Distinguishing Marks of a Work of a Spirit of God and Charity and Its Fruits, and other writings.
In addition, the course will pay attention to the “Great Awakening” of the eighteenth century marking the inauguration of the revival tradition in America. The sources feeding the awakenings and the manifestations of the movement reached far beyond America’s eastern shore and places the Great Awakening in (an international) context. Finally, we will consider the primary source texts by Edwards and other figures involved in the eighteenth-century spiritual revivals.
Required Readings (~ 1500 pp.) Samples:
Reading to be completed before class:
1. George M. Marsden, Jonathan Edwards. A Life (New Haven, London: Yale University Press, 2004).
2. Iain H. Murray, Jonathan Edwards: A New Biography (Edinburgh: Banner of Truth Trust, 1987).
Seminar 1: Edwards: An Introduction
Seminar 2: Edwards and Biblical Studies
Seminar 3: Edwards and Sermons
Seminar 4: Edwards and History
Seminar 5: Edwards on the Will, Original Sin, and Ethical Writings