25 religious scholars cite important advances and losses in twentieth century

CHRISTIANITY TODAYannually poses a significant question to twenty-five religious scholars and publishes replies in its anniversary number. Here is this year’s query and the response:

What twentieth-century development represents the greatest gain for Christianity? What development represents the greatest loss?

STUART BARTON BABBAGE, visiting professor, Columbia Theological Seminary: “The greatest gain: The revival of biblical theology within the Protestant churches and the establishment of the Biblical Institute within the Roman church. The greatest loss: The intellectual failure of the churches to answer the questions posed by behavioristic psychology and to rebut the philosophy of logical positivism.”

ANDREW W. BLACKWOOD, professor emeritus, Princeton Theological Seminary: “The greatest gain has come through the growth and influence of ‘the newer churches’ or ‘conservative evangelicals,’ not least in missions overseas. The greatest loss, I think, has come through the increase of secularism, by which I mean trying to get along without God.”

EMILE CAILLIET, professor emeritus, Princeton Theological Seminary: “Almighty God knows of no such thing as favorable or unfavorable developments. He is the great Unconditioned.”

GORDON H. CLARK, professor, Butler University: “It appears to me that the great disaster which has overtaken Christianity in the recent past is the immense power regained by the papacy. I do not know of any greatest advance of Christianity.”

OSCAR CULLMANN, professor, University of Basel: “The greatest gain is the fact that Protestant theology in our century emphasizes the Bible, yet not in such a way as to become nearsighted, but rather ...

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