Often considered one of the sparks that ignited the Reformation, the place of “works” in the Christian life is still debated. In this volume distinguished theologian Thomas Oden draws together Christian teaching from across the centuries to provide a comprehensive witness on this essential topic.
Oden listens to the timeless teaching of the patristic writers, the theologians who defined orthodoxy in the first five centuries after Christ. His listening extends not only to well-known fathers such as Augustine, Irenaeus, and Eusebius, but also to lesser-known yet no less important fathers such as Oecumenius, Pseudo-Basil, and Peter Chrysologus. Oden’s masterly compendium of classic Christian teaching covers treatment of the poor, the outcast, the imprisoned, and “the least of these.” Anyone involved in any ministry of compassion will find stunning spiritual resources here.
Charles W. Colson
— Founder, Prison Fellowship
“Tom Oden, one of the premier evangelical scholars in the world, has made an immense contribution to serious Christian thought by urging Christians across the confessional divides to find common ground in patristic teaching. His patristic-based Systematic Theology is an invaluable resource, one that I draw on regularly; so is his Justification Reader. Now he has added The Good Works Reader, a well-written, accessible, and very powerful volume. I picked it up to glance through it and ended up reading it thoroughly. I was particularly moved by the sections on prisoners, the poor, and the homeless — all close to God’s heart. Oden’s work gives us real hope for uniting Christian believers on the essentials of our faith. I highly recommend it.”
Thomas C Oden is Henry Anson Buttz Professor Emeritus of Theology at Drew University, Madison, New Jersey. The author of some forty books, he is also general editor of the multivolume Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture.