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Created for Community, 3rd Edition

Connecting Christian Belief with Christian Living

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This revised edition of a classic college-level introduction to theology presents the core doctrines of the Christian faith, encouraging readers to connect belief with everyday life. Stanley Grenz, one of the leading evangelical scholars of his era, and Jay Smith, an expert on Grenz's theological legacy, construct a helpful theology that is biblical, historical, and contemporary. The third edition includes a foreword by John Franke, a new preface and afterword, resources for further study, and updated footnotes. The book's easy-to-use format includes end-of-chapter discussion questions and connects theological concepts with current cultural examples.

Foreword by John R. Franke
Preface to the Third Edition
Preface to the Second Edition
Introduction: Christian Belief and Christian Living
1. Knowing the God of the Bible in the Contemporary World
2. The God Whom We Know
3. Our Identity as God's Creatures
4. Our Human Failure
5. Jesus Christ: "God with Us"
6. Jesus's Mission in the Divine Program
7. The Holy Spirit: The Author of Life
8. The Holy Spirit and Our Salvation
9. The Pioneer Community
10. Participating in the Pioneer Community
11. The Climax of Our Story
12. God's Community: Our Eternal Home
Epilogue: Making the Connection
Postscript by Jay T. Smith
Resources for Further Study


Praise for the Previous Edition

"As a professor of theology in a Christian university, I am always looking for texts particularly suited to the nonspecialist, undergraduate student that communicate in clear, ordinary language but do not compromise on scholarly substance. I am delighted to find in Created for Community a textbook in systematic theology that meets these criteria. I predict it is destined for a long career in colleges and universities."

Douglas Harink, The King's University

"Stanley Grenz restores the balance between thought and action, individual and community, head and heart, reason and experience in this splendid and readable work."

Robert E. Webber, author of Ancient-Future Faith

"Stanley Grenz has written a fresh, creative work that makes deep theological reflection accessible to everybody. In a tradition too often tinged with anti-intellectualism, it offers the opportunity to help us worship God with our whole mind."

John Ortberg, Menlo Park Presbyterian Church

"I would heartily recommend Created for Community as easily one of the clearest and best introductions to evangelical thought that has appeared. I intend to recommend it to my students as an excellent and exciting introduction to what Christians believe."

Alan F. Johnson, Wheaton College

"The strength of Created for Community is that it clearly articulates who God is as Father, Son, and Spirit and connects this with what God is doing in the world. This is exactly what will bring theology into the lives of readers."

Kenneth L. Draper, Canadian Bible College

The Authors

  1. Stanley J. Grenz

    Stanley J. Grenz

    Stanley J. Grenz (1950-2005) was the Pioneer McDonald Professor of Theology and Ethics at Carey Theological College. He earned the Doctor of Theology degree at the University of Munich. A leading voice on the North American theological scene, he wrote or...

    Continue reading about Stanley J. Grenz

  2. Jay T. Smith
    © Rab Cummings

    Jay T. Smith

    Jay T. Smith (PhD, Trinity College, Bristol) is president and Bridger Professor of Theology and Ethics at Yellowstone Theological Institute. Grenz was Smith's thesis supervisor at Regent College, and Smith wrote his PhD thesis on Grenz.

    Continue reading about Jay T. Smith


"There are a number of factors that make this revision of CFC [Created for Community] a valuable addition, not only for those with an interest in Grenz specifically, but those looking for an entry point into theological study with practical import as well. . . . Grenz is not content to simply write for the academy. Grenz certainly recognized the need for rigorous scholarly work but CFC stands as a testimony to his conviction that theological scholarship find an expression that would be appreciated and useful to the church at large. . . . Readers will find CFC . . . not only theologically thought provoking but spiritually nourishing as well. . . . Discussion questions are provided at the end of each chapter that would serve well for individual or group study. . . . This third edition of CFC has been revised and updated for a new day. . . . For undergraduates and those without substantial theological training, this new edition of CFC will serve as an excellent introduction to not only Grenz but theology that is connected to Christian community and living as well. Jay Smith is to be thanked and commended for his invaluable service to Grenz studies."

Russell L. Almon,

Review and Expositor

"This is one of the clearest works of theology that bridge the academic domain with the practicing world. It covers the full spectrum of theology without becoming overly weighed down by scholarship details. At the same time, there are a lot of practical explanations on why theology is important for daily Christian living. . . . I thank God for this book that helps to explain in a layperson manner the importance of theology."

Conrade Yap,

Panorama of a Book Saint blog

Praise for the Previous Edition

"With its simple, readable (almost conversational) style and clear explanations of doctrinal concepts, [this book] is suitable for new Christians and laypeople generally. . . . Perhaps the most valuable aspect of this book . . . is the systematic focus on the theme of community, whether it be in reference to the nature of God, heaven, or salvation. . . . The rigorous use of an integrating theme harmonizes well with the author's stated aim of 'connecting Christian belief with Christian living.'"

David Parker,

Evangelical Review of Theology

"It is a delight to see this work, in view of the common laments that Christian church members are not interested in theology these days. Those who do want a readable, practical, and thought-provoking presentation of the Christian faith will welcome Grenz's book. . . . The material is well laid out, with helpful previews and summaries, and each chapter includes a list of questions 'for connection and application.' Grenz makes community the focal point of his presentation of the Christian faith and he does this well. . . . Grenz has done a remarkable job of covering the territory concisely and interestingly, and I hope that his book will be widely read and used."

Terrance Tiessen,