B. Neo-Orthodoxy and Related Theologies

1.    Neo-orthodox theology

a.    Main points [dialectical theology] b.    Barth [Jesus Christ as the revealed Word of God] c.    Brunner [I-Thou relationship between man and God] d.    Niebuhr [Christianity's social relevance] e.    Evaluation: return from the extremes of liberal theology; emphasis on the importance of the Bible; under the influence of existentialism; subjective judgment of revelation; occasional compromise of biblical beliefs in favour of modern interpretations; neglect of the call to sainthood, not giving sufficient attention to the doctrine of church and sacraments. Barth's theology is progressively more acceptable today by evangelical theologians.
2.    Secular theology
a.    Main points [refitting Christianity for the secular world] b.    Bonhoeffer [the cost of discipleship] c.    Cox [secularization not secularism] d.    Rahner [anonymous Christianity] e.    Evaluation: the intention to bring Christianity into the secular world is good; but forget the commandments to separate from the world and to extend the Kingdom of God; man becomes the centre of theology; degenerates into universalism (all mankind is saved); influence the situation ethics of Fletcher where love is used as the norm of all moral decisions; related to death-of-God theology
3.    Historical theology
a.    Main points [the role of history in theology] b.    Cullmann [the importance of salvation history] c.    Pannenberg [faith rooted in history] d.    Evaluation: brings theology back into contact with history; offers a valuable corrective to major trends of contemporary theology; however, faith is more than rational evaluation of evidence.