Towards an evaluation of Tom Smail’s doctrine of God the Father

Masters thesis

Parsons, T. 2023. Towards an evaluation of Tom Smail’s doctrine of God the Father. Masters thesis Middlesex University / London School of Theology (LST) School of Law
TypeMasters thesis
TitleTowards an evaluation of Tom Smail’s doctrine of God the Father
AuthorsParsons, T.

Tom Smail sought to address what he saw as deficiencies in the 1970s charismatic movement in the UK by calling for a renewed focus on the person of God the Father. This thesis contributes to an evaluation of the doctrine of the Father he offered in The Forgotten Father (1980) and in subsequent books on Trinitarian topics. Smail’s contribution is set in its ecclesial and theological context, and his account of the Father described. Objections are raised against his commitment to the notion that the Son is eternally functionally subordinate to the Father. This concept – derived from Smail’s understanding of Karl Barth’s Church Dogmatics IV.I – leads him to blur necessary distinctions between the immanent and the economic Trinity and between the divine processions and the missions. These weaknesses lead to a characterisation of the Father principally in terms of authority which, it is argued, detracts from, rather than advances, his pastoral aims.

Sustainable Development Goals16 Peace, justice and strong institutions
Middlesex University ThemeCreativity, Culture & Enterprise
Department nameSchool of Law
Business and Law
Institution nameMiddlesex University / London School of Theology (LST)
Collaborating institutionLondon School of Theology (LST)
PublisherMiddlesex University Research Repository
Publication dates
Online28 Mar 2024
Publication process dates
Accepted01 Feb 2024
Deposited28 Mar 2024
Output statusPublished
Accepted author manuscript
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