Library Resources: Tools for Dogmatics (3409): Prolegomena

Classic Textbooks

Introduction to Systematic Theology.  Berkhof, Louis.  Grand Rapids: Baker, 1932. 

  • Formerly available as a separate volume, but now bound together with his Systematic Theology.  Still the classic textbook on prolegomena from a Reformed perspective.  BX9422 .B4 I5

Reformed Dogmatics: Prolegomena (Vol 1).  Bavinck, Herman.  Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2003 [1928]. 

  • Very extensive treatment of prolegomena.  Every detail you want, and probably more, can be found here.  Also see this four volume work abridged into one volume by John Bolt.  BX9422 .B313 and BX9422.3 .B38

Systematic Theology.  Hodge, Charles.  Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1993 [1872-73].

  • A North American, Presbyterian perspective on the foundations of theology.  See the Introductory division, Chaps 1-6.  BT75.H63 S9

Foundations of Dogmatics (Vol 1).  Weber, Otto.  Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1981 [1955]. 

  • Common Reformed dogmatic textbook originating in Germany.  Particularly thorough on the history of dogma.  BT75.2 .W413

Broader Studies

The Study of Theology.  Muller, Richard A.  Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1991. 

  • Although this is an introduction to the study of theology as a whole, certain matters related to the prolegomena of dogmatics are dealt with.  See chapter 3 in particular.  BR118 .M83

Principles of Sacred Theology.  Kuyper, Abraham.  Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1954.

  • Although this is an introduction to the study of theology as a whole, certain matters related to the prolegomena of dogmatics are dealt with.  See especially the Third Division, Chaps. 1-5.  Not an easy read, but worth the extra effort.  BR118 .K813

Other Studies

Systematic Theology (Vol 1).  Smith, Morton H.  Greenville: Greenville Seminary Press, 1994.

  • A brief survey of matters pertaining to prolegomena can be found in Division I, Chaps. 1-6.  If you are looking for more detail you may not find it here, but if you want a quick grasp of the issue, you may well be helped.  BT75.2 .S64 

The Christian Faith.  Horton, Michael.  Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2011. 

  • Working out his conviction that “the dogma is the drama” Horton explores the presuppositions of theology in Part 1, Chaps. 1-5 of this book.  BT75.3 .H67

Post-Reformation Reformed Dogmatics (Vol 1).  Muller, Richard A.  Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2003. 

  • A careful, historical study of the development of prolegomena from the 16th century through to the 18th century.  BT27 .M8 P6

Reformational Theology: A New Paradigm for Doing Dogmatics.  Spykman, Gordon J. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1992. 

  • A fresh attempt to do dogmatics on the basis of recent biblical studies and advances in reformational philosophy.  Substantial treatment of prolegomena in Part One, Chaps. 1-5.  Some of his “new directions” are better than others.  BT75.2 .S67

Systematic Theology: Prolegomena. Gulley, Norman R.  Berrien Springs: Andrews University Press, 2003.

  • Recent and very thorough treatment of prolegomena (750 pp!).  This book wanders into many different areas from biblical worldview to language philosophy to rabbinic hermeneutics.  However, they are valuable and engaging sections.  Written from a Seventh Day Adventist point of view.  BT75.3 .G85

 “Systematic Theology” in Collected Writings of John Murray (Vol 4).  Edinburgh: Banner of Truth Trust, 1982. 

  • Essay expounding Murray’s well-known exegetical, rather than philosophical, approach to dogmatics.  BX8915 .M87

“The Prolegomena Principle: Frame and Bavinck” by Oliphint, K. Scott in Speaking the Truth in Love, Hughes, John J., ed. Phillipsburg: Presbysterian & Reformed, 2009. 

  • Interesting article comparing and contrasting the different approach to prolegomena found in Frame and Bavinck, arguing that Frame’s method is superior.  BX9419.F73 S64