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Volume 2

Volume 2

Articles and Explorations

Does James Have a Theology?

William Varner |

The great German scholar Martin Dibelius bluntly declared that the Epistle of James “has no theology.” James Dunn called the letter “the least Christian writing of the NT.” If readers desire to find in James a theology expressed solely in the familiar categories of systematic theology, then they will be disappointed. Such definitions of theology, however, are simply too narrow and anachronistic in their expectations. If we expand our definition of the term theology to include biblical teaching that is firmly grounded in an understanding of God and his saving purposes, then James is most certainly and undoubtedly “theological.” While recognizing that James’ theology is sometimes more implicit than explicit, there are still a number of distinct theological emphases that emerge in the book.

Book Reviews