Visual Theology nicely fills the gap between the 1000+ page theology text designed for the seminary student or scholar and the daily devotional to be used in lieu of daily Bible reading.
I tend to be a visual learner and appreciate the various sketches and diagrams that the author uses to bring his concepts across. Some diagrams are similar to the Venn diagrams used in the study of set theory; others more closely resemble the network diagrams used to define a local area network used within a company IT center; still others imitate the show the relationships of various kinds of data used in database design. Though much of my career was spent in IT (hence, my examples above), the diagrams and the accompanying descriptions would be understandable to most readers – scholars or lay.
There are three major concerns which are common in books at this level:
- There is no index – if a reader wants to find out what the authors say about a particular topic, he or she will need to do a manual search for relevant information
- There are few “Notes” – 33 footnotes are included in the back of rear of the book, but point to material borrowed directly from other sources.
- On a related note, there are no hints to where the reader could find out more, in depth, information on a topic of interest.
In most academic classrooms this book could serve as a supplemental or ancillary text, at best. It would serve well as an adult Sunday School text, or as a gentle introduction to theology for the lay audience. I would also hope to see it in the theology section of many church or local libraries.
This review is based on a free copy provided by the publisher for the purpose of creating this review. The opinions expressed are mine alone.