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Thinking Through Creation: Genesis 1 and 2 as Tools of Cultural Critique

August 2018 | Review by Paul Wells
  • Publisher: P & R Publishing Company
  • ISBN: 978-1-62995-301-4
  • Pages: 192
  • Price: 13.39
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Book Review

The author’s intention was to ‘write the book that I would have wanted to read as an undergraduate student’ (p.137). With both panache and conviction, he has done precisely that.

The book is an antidote to the disposable, woolly thinking of social Marxism that is so prevalent in academia today. In the foreword, John Frame hits the nail on the head: ‘Watkin is a surprise: a well-trained philosopher who is also a clear and helpful writer’ (p.x).

The book presents ‘a vision of biblical doctrine not as a series of facts but as a framework for understanding any facts whatsoever, approaching the Bible not as story within reality but as the story of reality, and as the reality itself within which any other stories must necessarily exist’ (p.12).

The doctrines of the Trinity and creation structure the book. A brief introduction presents listening to the Bible, thinking it through and listening to the world.

The author then gives a critique of present culture on the basis of biblical presuppositions. In chapters 2-4, the Trinity, the creation of the universe and the creation of humanity are discussed.

Genesis 1-2 is a foundational passage for the Christian worldview. The influence of Cornelius Van Til and other Reformed thinkers is palpable. Watkin’s book is a fine application of presuppositional thought to the cultural challenges of the modern world. Each chapter has useful illustrations, summaries, questions for further study and reading suggestions.

Watkin has provided a great tool for students wanting to critically integrate their study with biblical beliefs. It would also be useful in advanced church study groups or for ministers who need encouragement in applying the biblical message in their preaching.

Paul Wells


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