Welcome to the Five Books recommendations on theology. We have interviews with a distinguished range of experts including biblical scholars, literary critics, church historians, and philosophers of religion recommending their top theology books on questions of biblical interpretation, the historical development of religions, and specific matters of doctrine.
Professor Diarmaid MacCulloch discusses the history of Christianity. Edward Feser, associate professor of philosophy at Pasadena City College, talks about arguments for the existence of God. Peter Adamson, professor of late ancient and Arabic philosophy at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, looks at Islamic theology and chooses his best books on philosophy in the Islamic world. Professor Stephen Greenblatt of Harvard talks about Adam and Eve, Paula Fredriksen, historian of ancient Christianity, tackles sin and academic and Anglican clergyman, Robert Morgan, chooses his best books on Jesus. Timothy Beale, professor of religion at Case Western Reserve Univeristy, looks at versions of the Bible.
While a new part of Five Books, we aim to develop it and engage further with theological questions raised by the most influential religious traditions.
How can one get to grips with a subject as huge as the history of Christianity, a 2000 year-old religion with adherents in every corner of the globe? The popular and distinguished Oxford historian, Diarmaid MacCulloch, recommends books that will help you make a start.
Summa Theologiae, Questions on God
by (ed.) Brian Davies and Brian Leftow
The Thought of Thomas Aquinas
by Brian Davies
Aquinas's Way to God: The Proof in De Ente et Essentia
by Gaven Kerr
The Reality of God and the Problem of Evil
by Brian Davies
Atheism and Theism
by J. J. C. Smart & John Haldane
Is the existence of God incompatible with evil? What is the difference between ‘classical theism’ and ‘theistic personalism’? What is the best argument against there being a God? From Aristotle through Aquinas to the present, philosopher Edward Feser gives an in-depth look at arguments for the existence of God.
Greek Thought, Arabic Culture
by Dimitri Gutas
Great Medieval Thinkers: Avicenna
by Jon McGinnis
Avicenna's 'De Anima' in the Latin West
by Dag Nikolaus Hasse
Maimonides in His World: Portrait of a Mediterranean Thinker
by Sarah Stroumsa
The Teleological Ethics of Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī
by Ayman Shihadeh
Arabic philosophy was hugely influential during the Islamic Golden Age; at one point, the Persian polymath Avicenna’s influence outstripped that of Aristotle. But a strong tradition has continued in the centuries since, explains Professor Peter Adamson, as he selects five of the best books on the subject.
Who were Adam and Eve, really? Over many centuries, the origin story has undergone countless transformations. The Pulitzer Prize-winner and Harvard professor Stephen Greenblatt chooses five books that explore the history of Adam and Eve, and tells us why the world isn’t ready to leave the narrative of Eden behind
Jesus was a 1st century Jew from Galilee who had a ministry of teaching and healing. He gathered disciples around him, but was eventually arrested and executed by the Roman governor of Judaea from 26 to 36CE, Pontius Pilate. But what else do we know about Jesus and what is his significance in an increasingly secular age? New Testament scholar Robert Morgan talks us through his favourite books on Jesus.
Tortured by the sins of your past? Or contemplating new ones? The historian of ancient Christianity recommends five books to understand the role of sin in Christian thought.
Religion professor Timothy Beal introduces five different versions of the Bible — from the New Oxford Annotated edition to less traditional “green” and feminist takes