An Introduction to Thinking and Living Theologically

This introductory theology text explains key concepts in Christian doctrine and shows that doctrine is integrally linked to the practical realities of Christian life.

This book, written from a solidly evangelical yet ecumenically aware perspective, models a way of doing theology that is generous and charitable. It attends to history and contemporary debates and features voices from the global church.

"A timely and important reminder that doctrines are not merely ideas to be debated but truths to be done. Jones's evangelical and ecumenical approach to each doctrine is also most welcome: she does a good job balancing the centripetal force of evangelicals' focus on the gospel with the centrifugal force of the gospel's historical reception in many places and times. Practicing Christian Doctrine joins the short list of one-volume introductions to Christian theology that I am happy to recommend."
--Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

"A wise, well-written introduction to the wonder and joy of Christian doctrine and to the importance of actually practicing what Christians affirm to be true. I can't think of a better text for introducing Christians to the riches of our theological heritage and to the call to live out that legacy well in the world today."
--Christopher A. Hall, president of Renovaré

"An introductory theology for evangelical Christians that affirms what is praiseworthy about this distinctive movement within Christianity, while at the same time drawing on the rich tradition offered by other voices and movements in the global church to enrich and nurture their understanding of the gospel. Written in an accessible and winsome style, this book will be a valuable teaching tool for years to come."
--Barry Harvey, Honors College and the Graduate Faculty in Religion, Baylor University

"Jones goes beyond the 'what' of theology to draw the reader into the 'So what?' with lively reminders of the joy and gratitude that should permeate theological exploration. Perhaps the most helpful feature of this book, though, is that it never loses sight of the 'Now what?' question, as Jones embeds evocative indicators of how Christian thought is to be embodied and lived."
--Steven Wilkens, Azusa Pacific University

"Jones presents a rich and engaging survey of Christian doctrine, showing how good theology is to be not merely believed but also lived. As she demonstrates in each chapter concerning every major doctrine of the faith, orthodox theology should nourish spiritual growth and inspire faithful Christian living. I highly recommend this book, whether as a classroom text or for personal use."
--James S. Spiegel, Taylor University


A Theology of Sex

Many believers accept traditional Christian sexual morality but have very little idea why it matters for the Christian life. In Faithful, author Beth Felker Jones sketches a theology of sexuality that demonstrates sex is not about legalistic morals with no basis in reality but rather about the God who is faithful to us.

This short book explores the goodness of sexuality as created and redeemed, and it suggests ways to navigate the difficulties of living in a world in which sexuality, like everything else, suffers the effects of the fall.

As part of Zondervan’s Ordinary Theology series, Faithful takes a deeper look at a subject Christians talk about often but not always thoughtfully. This short, insightful reflection explores the deeper significance of the body and sexuality.


Devotions and Prayers for a Crisis

This short book of devotional reflections and prayers was written in March and April of 2020, in the face of the pandemic crisis. These twenty-five short readings share the love of God and the hope we have in Jesus Christ as we face a time of fear, anxiety, isolation, and suffering. The devotions include material from Psalms of Lament, Julian of Norwich, and reflection on the meaning of Christ's death and resurrection. These reflections are a companion for anyone walking through suffering and crisis.

"Beth Felker Jones provides a series of devotions during the specific seasons of the COVID-19 pandemic that speak into that pandemic, but yet these devotions will continue to speak to us--as acts of memory, as acts of pondering, as acts of lament, as acts of trust, and as acts of hope. Quarantine, she tells us, can't stop Easter. Pandemic Prayers comes from a Christian, a mother, a professor, and an author. As a theologian Beth Felker Jones takes us to spiritual giants like Julian of Norwich, and as a devotional Christian she expresses her annoyance and her pain with the pandemic, but she opens her heart for all to see who she is, like the Bible's own prayers and devotions."

--Scot McKnight, author of Open to the Spirit and The Jesus Creed

"In this short book, Beth Felker Jones has given us a rich and beautiful gift. Her writing is vivid, comforting, and luminescent. And she masterfully pulls together her daily life and struggles amid a global pandemic and enduring truths from the great tradition of Christian thought. With wide-ranging meditations on anxiety, lament, weakness, death, and hope, Jones invites us into the mystery of God with the clarity of a brilliant theologian and the compassionate heart of a pastor."

--Tish Harrison Warren, author of Liturgy of the Ordinary: Sacred Practices in Everyday Life

"In times of stress, Christians are often driven to seek a deeper prayer life. This book is both the fruit of such a search as well as a guide to one. It is unhurriedly calming and quietly fortifying. In the shadow of illness, social unrest, and an uncertain global future, I plan to keep it on my nightstand and return to it often for nourishment and comfort."

--Wesley Hill, author of Spiritual Friendship

"We live in a strange world where things like pandemics and global warming seem to be the new norm. If truth be told, many of us don't know how to pray in times of crisis. In Pandemic Prayers, theologian Beth Felker Jones teaches us how to pray in difficult seasons of life by sharing her own very personal reflections in the form of devotions and rich theological prayers. This book has blessed my life and I pray that it may help you find fresh faith, hope, and healing in these uncertain times."

--Winfield Bevins, author of Ever Ancient Ever New

"In Pandemic Prayers, Beth Felker Jones offers reflections and prayers to accompany us in the dark valley of Coronavirus. Avoiding simplistic platitudes, she faces the pain of this current moment head-on. And, with deep wisdom and vulnerability, brings the reader face to face with Jesus."

--Emily H. McGowin, author of Quivering Families

"What a gift to have these devotions written by a wise theologian with a compassionate spirit and gift for words. Though written during a pandemic, they will inspire us to find hope in God whatever season of life we are in, since life is never as stable and predictable as we would like it to be. These devotions touched my heart, gave me courage, and led me to prayer."

--L. Roger Owens, author of Threshold of Discovery: A Field Guide to Spirituality in Midlife


Gender Politics and Bodily Resurrection

It is a central tenet of Christian theology that we will be resurrected in our bodies at the last day. But we have been conditioned, writes Beth Felker Jones, to think of salvation as being about anything but the body. We think that what God wants for us has to do with our thoughts, our hearts, or our interior relationships.

Jones's addresses several important questions: What does human psychosomatic unity imply for the theological conceptualization of embodied difference, especially gendered difference? How does embodied hope transform our present bodily practices? How does God's momentous "yes" to the body, in the Incarnation, both judge and destroy the corrupt ways we have thought, produced, constructed, and even broken bodies in our culture, especially bodies marked by race and gender?

Jones's book articulates a theology of human embodiment in light of resurrection doctrine and feminist political concerns. Because death has been overcome in Christ's resurrected body, human embodiment can bear witness to the Triune God. The bodily resurrection makes sense of our bodies, of what they are and what they are for.

"Jones, writing with clarity and passion, grounds her theology of the body in the doctrine of the physical resurrection. This is a compelling book that has reshaped my theology of the body and the physical resurrection." --Rebekah Miles, author of The Bonds of Freedom: Feminist Theology and Christian Realism

"Jones retrieves by way of a creative reconsideration of bodily resurrection the body's, indeed the gendered body's, centrality for human life before and with God. A timely, if not urgent book, eloquently argued!" --Reinhard Hütter, Professor of Christian Theology, Duke University Divinity School

"This book is a must read for both confessional Christians suspicious of feminism, and feminists suspicious of creedal Christianity. Jones convincingly brings together theology grounded in the Church's creedal confessions with a substantive feminist politics. She brings forth something truly new precisely because it takes so seriously what was ancient. It is an illuminating work." --D. Stephen Long, Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary


Explorations in Theological Anthropology (edited with Jeffrey W. Barbeau)

Whether on the printed page, the television screen or the digital app, we live in a world saturated with images.
Some images help shape our understanding of ourselves and the world around us in positive ways, while others lead us astray and distort our relationships. Christians confess that human beings have been created in the image of God, yet we chose to rebel against that God and so became unfaithful bearers of God's image. The good news of the gospel is that Jesus, who is the image of God, restores the divine image in us, partially now and fully in the day to come. The essays collected in The Image of God in an Image Driven Age explore the intersection of theology and culture. With topics ranging across biblical exegesis, the art gallery, Cormac McCarthy, racism, sexuality and theosis, the contributors to this volume offer a unified vision―ecumenical in nature and catholic in spirit―of what it means to be truly human and created in the divine image in the world today.

This collection from the 2015 Wheaton Theology Conference includes contributions by Daniela C. Augustine, Craig L. Blomberg, William A. Dyrness, Timothy R. Gaines and Shawna Songer Gaines, Phillip Jenkins, Beth Felker Jones, Christina Bieber Lake, Catherine McDowell, Ian A. McFarland, Matthew J. Milliner, Soong-Chan Rah and Janet Soskice, as well as original poems by Jill Peláez Baumgaertner and Brett Foster.

"The essays collected in this volume explore the intersection of theology and culture. With topics ranging across biblical exegesis, the art gallery, Cormac McCarthy, racism, sexuality, and theosis, the contributors offer a unified vision of what it means to be truly human and created in the divine image in the world today."

-- Interpretation, 70(4), 2016

"Poetry, literature, visual art and deep theological thinking collide here! What better way to think about what it means to be made in God's image, and what it means to bear God's image, to a world beset with so many false images? Students, pastors and theologians alike will find here a meaty conversation and, better yet, an invitation to bear God's image well."

-- Jana M. Bennett, University of Dayton

"This is a fecund collection of essays on theological anthropology. In it one can find treatments of the image of God from biblical, systematic and constructive theology, but one can also find essays that reflect on the imaging of God in the arts: in poetry and in literary criticism. Here too there is reflection on our witness to the divine image in a culture of commodification and a world where the color of one's skin has displaced the divine image in which we are all created. These explorations of the doctrine of the image of God offer readers a rich and satisfying smorgasbord of essays and art that repays careful reading and reflection."

-- Oliver D. Crisp, Fuller Theological Seminary

"Bringing together art, literature and theology, these essays are a prism of Christian reflection on what is perhaps the most urgent question of our time: What does it mean to be a human being created in the image of God?"

-- Timothy George, Beeson Divinity School, general editor of the Reformation Commentary on Scripture


Christian Renewal in the Community of Faith (edited with Jeffrey W. Barbeau)

While the age of the Holy Spirit began with Pentecost, the twentieth century has seen an explosion in the Spirit's work through the remarkable growth of Pentecostalism and the changing face of global Christianity. Despite these surprising developments, and the undeniable significance of the Holy Spirit throughout the life of the church, pneumatology too often remains a subject of misunderstanding and neglect.

These essays, gathered from the 2014 Wheaton Theology Conference, provide an ecumenical exploration of the Holy Spirit’s person and work in biblical, historical, doctrinal and practical perspective. In addition to essays on Augustine, Aquinas, creation and salvation, the volume features important contributions on the current shape of global Pentecostalism by leading scholars in the field.

This collection includes contributions by: Estrelda Y. Alexander, Allan Heaton Anderson, Jeffrey W. Barbeau, Oliver D. Crisp, Timothy George, Gregory W. Lee, Matthew Levering, Douglas Petersen, Sandra Richter, Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Geoffrey Wainwright, Michael Welker, Amos Yong, Beth Felker Jones

"Introducing key themes, figures and movements in the biblical and historical theology of the Holy Spirit, covering major areas of contemporary theology and ecclesiology from a pneumatological perspective and with an eye toward their implications for Christian thought, life and ministry by leading Protestant, Pentecostal and Catholic theologians, Spirit of God makes an effective entry point to the leading edge of the field of pneumatology."

-- Steven M. Studebaker, McMaster Divinity College, author of From Pentecost to the Triune God: A Pentecostal Trinitarian Theology

"What a wonderful book. As the church seeks to know, experience and discern the person and work of the Spirit in its local and global life, these essays are a thoughtful, wise and encouraging accompaniment. They remind us of God's faithful presence among us from creation's beginning, throughout history and in the mystery of the triune life, until the final new creation. They also provide multiple entry points with which to join the wide-ranging and much-needed conversations of the church as it seeks to follow the leading of the Spirit and participate eschatologically in the triune mission of God."

-- Cherith Fee Nordling, associate professor of theology, Northern Seminary

"I wish Spirit of God had been available when I planned my seminar on the Holy Spirit; I would have adopted it as a textbook. If I teach it again, I will adopt it. It's a marvelous survey of contemporary biblical and theological reflections on the Holy Spirit by evangelical scholars. I highly recommend it to all who are interested in this topic of current interest. The chapter 'Stories of Grace: Pentecostals and Social Justice' is worth the price alone."

-- Roger E. Olson, George W. Truett Theological Seminary

"The book is worth the reading for pastor, student, and layperson."

-- Woodrow E. Walton, Africanus Journal, Vol. 9, No. 1 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Introducing Pneumatology in Wesleyan and Ecumenical Perspective

Who is the mysterious Holy Spirit, and why does it matter for the Christian life? How do we know when the Spirit is working? This book introduces the doctrine of the Holy Spirit in the Wesleyan theological tradition and within the greater church. It covers key biblical bases for thinking about the Spirit, and it seeks to inspire confidence in the Spirit's power.

"This book is a gracious introduction to the person and work of God the Spirit grounded in the communion of the triune God and God's people. From both a particular Wesleyan and a wider ecumenical perspective, Jones helps to navigate historical, creedal, and contemporary experience of the Spirit under the wisdom and authority of Scripture and the reasonable discernment of the saints. In a world vague on 'spirituality' and a church that swings between domesticating and overemphasizing certain experiences of the Spirit, this helpful book for students, pastors, and laity will encourage all who desire to know and walk in the Spirit to do so in the joy, power, and humility of Christ."
--Cherith Fee Nordling, author of Knowing God by Name

"A pneumatology at once biblical, orthodox, evangelical, and Wesleyan? Beth Felker Jones's lovely book signals a way past the West's common forgetfulness of the Spirit toward recognition and worship of the one Augustine called our 'perpetual comforter.' Highly recommended for teaching at all levels of church and academy."
--Jason Byassee, author of Discerning the Body

"I hope this books gets into many seminary classrooms, pastors' studies, and church small groups, because I know of no better guide to help us understand, discern, and--best of all--participate in the re-creating work of the Holy Spirit in our midst. With stylistic grace, theological insight, and conceptual clarity, Jones has written a genuinely inspiring book on the Spirit."
--L. Roger Owens, Associate Professor of Leadership and Ministry, Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

"Beth Felker Jones manages both subtlety and accessibility in her account of the complex history and interpretation of the doctrine of the Holy Spirit. Even better, in concert with the Scriptures, her beautiful prose fills readers with a sense of the Spirit's presence and sustaining love."
--Fred Edie, author of Book, Bath, Table, and Time


Discovering the Hidden Messages in the Twilight Saga

The Twilight saga tells the story of a regular girl’s relationship with a vampire who has chosen to follow his “good” side.

But the Saga isn’t just another fantasy–it’s teaching girls about love, sex, and purpose. With millions of copies sold and several blockbuster films, it is time to ask the important question: Can vampires teach us about God’s plan for love?

Touched by a Vampire is the first book to investigate the themes of the Twilight Saga from a Biblical perspective. Some Christian readers have praised moral principles illustrated in the story, such as premarital sexual abstinence, which align with Meyer’s Mormon beliefs. But ultimately, Beth Felker Jones examines whether the story’s redemptive qualities outshine its darkness.

“Like many who care about young adults, I’ve puzzled over the recent vampire craze. I applaud Touched by a Vampire for shining its brilliant light into a somewhat dark and mysterious world. Utilizing the existing teen fascination of the Twilight books in order to spark an open discussion about love, life, and faith is both smart and savvy. This thoughtful book is a much needed tool for parents, youth leaders, and teens.”
—MELODY CARLSON, author of the Diary of a Teenage Girl series

“‘But Mom, you’d like this vampire book. It teaches that true love waits!’ They knew which pitch to give, and Felker Jones has
their number. This book is itself a page-turner, diagnosing vampiric love as meager fare. It turns out true love is not so much about waiting for Mr. Bite, but being abundantly blessed at God’s banquet.”
—AMY LAURA HALL, associate professor of Christian Ethics, Duke University, and author of Conceiving Parenthood and Kierkegaard and
the Treachery of Love

Cautionary, thoughtful, and challenging, Touched by a Vampire is written for Twilight fans, parents, teachers, and pop culture enthusiasts. It includes an overview of the series for those unfamiliar with the storyline and a discussion guide for small groups.

Practicing Christian Doctrine
Pandemic Prayers
Marks of His Wounds
God the Spirit
Touched by a Vampire
The Image of God in an Image Driven Age
Spirit of God