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Jun17TueConvictions Matter offers an accessible guide to Salvation Army doctrines. June 17, 2014 Review by Major (Dr.) Bruce Power
When was the last time you thought through the statement of faith articulated in the eleven doctrines of The Salvation Army? Or read them over at all? Most of us tend to be doctrine deprived, at least when it comes to having a systematic approach.
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- Opinion & Critical Thought
Major Ray Harris' Convictions Matter provides a helpful service to readers who are interested in learning about and reflecting on the foundations of the Salvationist faith. Major Harris is well qualified to write this book: a former training principal at the St. John's, N.L., College for Officer Training, he holds a doctor of ministry with an emphasis on theological education. Convictions Matter provides an accessible overview of the eleven doctrines. Each doctrine is addressed using criteria that include: the development of the theological idea(s); concerns and misunderstandings about these ideas; and how these ideas affect our thinking and actions in daily life. Each chapter is divided into three sections: forming the doctrine, engaging the doctrine and practising the doctrine.
Drawing on his experience as a teacher of doctrine in various roles, Major Harris articulates these ideas for a broad audience, seeking to provide both clarity of thought and attention to practical application. Designed for the individual reader, the book can also easily be used for group study as each of the dozen chapters includes reflection questions and exercises.
Major Harris unites the book's 12 chapters with the approach that “all doctrines have something important to say about holiness,” which I found most helpful. I thoroughly enjoyed reading Convictions Matter, finding its engagement with contemporary theology informative and thought provoking. Its approach to tradition and Salvationist views was enlightening. I appreciated having a trusted guide to accompany me on a fresh journey through our statements of faith.
Major (Dr.) Bruce Power is an adjunct professor of biblical studies at Booth University College.
Convictions Matter is available at store.salvationarmy.ca, by telephone at 416-422-6100, or by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. For e-books, visit amazon.ca.
Territorial Congress 2014: Major Ray Harris will be at territorial congress on Saturday, June 21, from 6:00-7:00 pm for an Author's Corner talk-back session and book signing.