Catching the Fire of Love: On the Vital Role of Emotional Connection

James H. Olthuis
,"Catching the Fire of Love: On the Vital Role of Emotional Connection," Journal of Psychology and Christianity 43, no.1 (Spring 2024): pp. 50-57.

Available through: Christian Association for Psychological Studies (CAPS) membership, or at your academic library

Love is at work in us and with us as we seek to catch and be caught by the fire of God’s love. Caught by the fire of God’s love, we can undergo a transformation that clears a space of healing and forgiveness so that we are no longer hampered, burdened, or victimized by the traumas we have suffered. We are enabled to develop healthy, mutually satisfying relationships with others, encouraged to join in socio-economic projects for the good of society at large—reforming structures of injustice, opposing all forms of violence, caretaking the planet, and becoming agents of change and renewal—co-partners with God in the ministry of healing, for it is to that mission that we were created and recreated in Jesus Christ. (56)

Participating in God’s redemptive work: A cyclical model for learning and assessment

"Participating in God’s redemptive work: A cyclical model for learning and assessment." Edith van der Boom. In International Journal of Christianity and Education. Calvin University. March 2024. 28(1).

Find it at: Sage Journals 


With the goal of working towards decolonizing educational practices, this article considers the Indigenous medicine wheel as inspiration for a cyclical model for learning and assessment. Many current assessment practices highlight individual achievement rather than ongoing and relational learning. This article suggests using a Learning Wheel as a tool to engage students in conversation about learning and assessment. The purpose of assessment would be to inform students’ learning. The goal of learning would in turn equip students to be mindful of learning that engages in real-world issues to partner in God’s redemptive work.

Encouraging Faith Manifestoes for People with Open Ears: Biblical Narrative History

Encouraging Faith Manifestoes for People with Open Ears: Biblical Narrative History. In Tough Stuff from the Bible, Tendered Gently series (Vol. 1). By Calvin G. Seerveld, Jordan Station: Paideia Press, 2024. 

[404 pages, ISBN 9780888153432]

Find it on: Paideia Press

This is the first volume in a forthcoming series, Tough Stuff from the Bible, Tendered Gently. This volume is a collection of 18 Biblical meditations interpreting both Old and New Testaments. They are a compilation of what was spoken to mostly local congregations in the Toronto, Ontario area of Canada, between 1977 and 2011, by Calvin Seerveld. Certain old traditional hymns (no longer under copyright) and a few newly composed Psalms texts by Seerveld, with melodies, are included, which are relevant to the exposition. Occasional photographic illustrations document what is spoken.

Congregations of Christian believers constituted the majority of audiences for these public presentations. Exposition represents a hermeneutics in the tradition of Martin Luther and Jean Calvin, often with a contemporary twist that relates the biblical passages to current societal problems, political troubles, and ordinary daily life. A few meditations end with a prayer.

Adorno, Heidegger, and the Politics of Truth

Adorno, Heidegger, and the Politics of Truth

Lambert Zuidervaart. New York: SUNY Press, 2024.

Available at: SUNY Press

Publisher's Overview:

An elusive and complex idea of truth lies at the center of Theodor Adorno's thought. Yet he never spells out what it is. Through close readings of Negative Dialectics, Aesthetic Theory, and related course lectures, Lambert Zuidervaart reconstructs Adorno's conception of truth, contrasts it with the conceptions of Martin Heidegger and Michel Foucault, and explores its relevance for contemporary philosophy, art, and politics. Adorno regards truth as a dynamic constellation in which various dialectical polarities intersect. The most decisive polarity, Zuidervaart argues, occurs between society as it has developed and the historical possibility of a completely transformed world. Critically reconstructed, Adorno's conception of truth can help inspire hopeful critiques of an allegedly post-truth society.

Review of the Book:

Zuidervaart, who already published numerable books on critical theory in general and Adorno in particular, again shows himself to be an excellent and critical reader of Adorno. The greatest strength of Adorno, Heidegger, and the Politics of Truth is that it offers an in-depth study of Adorno's concept of truth, based on a thorough reading and understanding, and an original and critical interpretation of Adorno's work. It also surpasses that in demonstrating the need for a conception of 'truth as a whole' beyond propositional truth, and the need to link the concept of truth to social critique and social hope. All this makes this book a must-read for Adorno scholars.

— Thijs Lijster, author of Benjamin and Adorno on Art and Art Criticism: Critique of Art

Table of Contents:

1. Adorno’s Conception of Truth

2. The Humanly Promised Other of History

3. Surplus beyond the Subject

4. What Is, Is More Than It Is

5. Politics of Truth: Adorno, Foucault, and Feminist Critical Theory

6. “Weh spricht vergeh”: Truth in Adorno’s Aesthetic Theory

7. Promises of Truth

Appendix: Reflections from Damaged Life: Theodor W. Adorno (1903–69)

Gestures of Grace: Essays in Honour of Robert Sweetman

Gestures of Grace: Essays in Honour of Robert SweetmanCurrents in Reformational Thought series. Edited by Joshua Lee HarrisHéctor Acero Ferrer. Eugene: Wipf and Stock, 2023.

Publisher's Overview:

Gestures of Grace is a celebration of the life and career of Robert Sweetman, H. Evan Runner Chair in the History of Philosophy at the Institute for Christian Studies (2001-2023). These essays, written by students and colleagues, testify to the remarkable breadth and depth of Sweetman's research and teaching, from his early scholarly career at the Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies to his time at ICS. Throughout the volume, there is extensive engagement with Sweetman's influential historical scholarship on topics such as the emergence and development of the Dominican order in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, medieval women authors, Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus, and indeed on Sweetman's own systematic contribution to the nature and promise of Christian scholarship today.

Praise for Gestures of Grace:

“Joshua Lee Harris and Héctor A. Acero Ferrer’s collection of essays in honor of Prof. Robert Sweetman is a remarkably fine tribute to an outstanding medievalist and Christian scholar who engages in contemporary as well as historical thought. The collection, unlike so many other Festschriften, offers studies by a wide-ranging group of contributors who enter into dialogue with the equally catholic work of the scholar honored. No better tribute could be imagined for so broad, yet scholarly and keenly philosophical a mind, as Sweetman’s.”

—Timothy B. Noone, chair in philosophy, The Catholic University of America

The Artistic Sphere: The Arts in Neo-Calvinist Perspective

The Artistic Sphere: The Arts in Neo-Calvinist Perspective. Edited by Roger D. Henderson & Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker. Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 2024.

Available at: InterVarsity Press

Publisher's Overview:

While some Christians have embraced the relationship between faith and the arts, the Reformed tradition tends to harbor reservations about the arts. However, among Reformed churches, the Neo-Calvinist tradition—as represented in the work of Abraham Kuyper, Herman Dooyeweerd, Hans Rookmaaker, and others—has consistently demonstrated not just a willingness but a desire to engage with all manner of cultural and artistic expressions.

This volume, edited by art scholar Roger Henderson and Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker, the daughter of art historian and cultural critic Hans Rookmaaker, brings together history, philosophy, and theology to consider the relationship between the arts and the Neo-Calvinist tradition. With affirmations including the Lordship of Christ, the cultural mandate, sphere sovereignty, and common grace, the Neo-Calvinist tradition is well-equipped to offer wisdom on the arts to the whole body of Christ.


    Roger D. Henderson and Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker

Part One: Roots
1. Geneva's Artistic Legacy: From Calvin to Today
    Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker

2. Calvin and the Arts: Pure Vision or Blind Spot?

3. Rumors of Glory: Abraham Kuyper's Neo-Calvinist Theory of Art
    Roger D. Henderson

4. Dooyeweerd's Aesthetics
    Roger D. Henderson

Part Two: Art History
5. Art, Meaning, and Truth
    Hans R. Rookmaaker
    Looking with Historical Depth: Hugo van der Goes, Filippino Lippi and Albrecht Dürer

6. The Vocation of a Christian Art Historian: Strategic Choices in a Multicultural Context
    E. John Walford
    Ridentem dicere verum—Pieter Bruegel’s Peasant Wedding of Circa 1567

7. More than Can Be Seen: Tim Rollins and K.O.S.'s I See the Promised Land
    James Romaine

Part Three: Aesthetics
8. The Halo of Human Imaginativity
    The Meaning of the Crucifixion: Grünewald and Perugino

9. Rethinking Art
    Nicholas Wolterstorff
    The Social Protest Meaning of the Graphic Art of Käthe Kollwitz

10. Imagination, Art, and Civil Society: Re-envisioning Reformational Aesthetics
    Redemptive Art Criticism

11. Art, Body, and Feeling: New Roads for Neo-Calvinist Aesthetics
    Chris Ofili: Contemporary Art and the Return of Religion

Part Four: Theology and Art
12. The Theology of Art of Gerardus van der Leeuw and Paul Tillich
    Wessel Stoker

13. The Elusive Quest for Beauty
    William Edgar

14. Fifty-Plus Years of Art and Theology: 1970 to Today
    Victoria Emily Jones