Basic Christianity by John Stott (InterVarsity Press 25p)
HERE is a paperback setting out to be "a key book for those who want to get at the truth about Jesus Christ." It might well have been written as a follow-tip to such evangelical missions as those of Billy Graham — the impression is of an intense personal faith, oldfashioned yet refreshing.
Without even lip service to the "new theology," this book has a simplicity which affirms: Christ is the Lord, the son of God, we are sinners, Christ has died for sinners. The first part of the book "Christ's Person" is clear and convincing, dealing with the claims, character and resurrection of Christ as revealed in the gospels — straightforward stuff. The evangelistic emphasis on sin and repentance has its appeal to the emotions and anxieties of humanity : powerful needs, but not the whole story.
The final chapters dealing with man's response to the redemptive work of Christ and the need for adherence to some Christian organisation, are little more than a postscript and John Stott has barely acknowledged traditional con cepts of the Church, the idea of
the priesthood "Christ's servants entrusted with the mysteries of God" or our sacramental sharing in the life of the risen Christ.
Area: Supplement 5 The Literature of Religious Education a Survey by H. E. Lupton (Religious Education Trust 40p)
Religiots instruction has been the only obligatory subject in our state schools since the 1944 education act. When we consider the revolutionary developments in educational and theological circles together with the growth in the studies of the natural and behavioural sciences in the last thirty years, it is no wonder that this survey shows a wide and important increase in literature dealing with this whole spectrum.
This helpful and objective survey is much more than a bibliography; H. E. Lupton has covered a wide field of published and unpublished works dealing with the agreed syllabuses; researches ranging from opinion polls to psychological and philosophical studies; and works dealing with specific teaching problems. There is also a useful chapter on examinations and the limitations of the G.C.E. and C.S.E. questions.
Catholic religious education is, by definition, outside the state system, but a useful paragraph refers to the importance of Gabriel Moran's work, warning against the fashionable "method" emphasis in religious education and arguing in favour of the prophetic and revelatory emphasis. This small booklet should prove invaluable to both students and experienced teachers.
Living Issues by John Sutcliffe a n d Philip Lee Wolfe (S.C.M. Press 30p) The first two books in this new series designed for 15-16 year old .students are entitled "Conflict" a n d "Communication." They aim to deal with contemporary issues drawing comparisons with other periods of history, putting a certain emphasis on church history, and thus help students towards an understanding of at least some aspects of the Christian faith.