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Skip this list. Ratings and Book Reviews 0 0 star ratings 0 reviews. Overall rating No ratings yet 0. When asked about the most influential writings in Christian history, anyone who is familiar with church history will include certain writings by Augustine, Aquinas, and Luther. Augustine was the single most influential theologian of the first millennium, and these works have had a profound influence on Christian thinking since their publication. The Top 50 perhaps, but not the Top It is one of the best-selling Christian books of all times, but it is somewhat difficult to nail down exactly what the nature of its influence has been.
The remaining titles are all debatable. They should all be somewhere in the Top , but for various reasons I would replace at least some of those in the Top 25 with other works. Will it stand the test of time? Will people still be reading and discussing it years from now? There are several titles that I would add to the Top 25 list. I should also note that influence can be either good or bad, so my inclusion of the following titles does not necessarily mean that I endorse the theology.
It is a succinct statement of faith in the basic articles of the Christian faith. It is incorporated into the confessions and catechisms of a wide variety of churches Roman Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, Reformed, etc. Athanasius, Letters to Serapion —Athanasius is well-known for the role he played in the Arian controversy, and it is certainly arguable that his works against the Arians should also make the Top 25, but his writings on the Holy Spirit should not be forgotten. Gregory of Nazianzus, Theological Orations —Delivered sometime around the year in Constantinople, these sermons on the Doctrine of the Trinity, by perhaps the greatest theological mind among the Cappadocian Fathers, have had a long-lasting influence.
His Christology, however, profoundly shaped the thinking of the Church. His doctrine of Christ is the doctrine upheld as biblical at three of the ecumenical councils Ephesus, Chalcedon, Constantinople II. His second and third letters to Nestorius and his letter to John of Antioch are mentioned in the Definition of Chalcedon, along with the Tome of Leo, as the place to go in order to get a fuller explanation of the Christological teaching of the council.
Every important scholastic theologian in the following centuries wrote commentaries on the Sentences. Canons and Decrees of the Council of Trent —I believe the Canons and Decrees of the Council of Trent have to be included in the Top 25 most influential writings in the history of the church for obvious reasons. Rome was at a crossroads in the sixteenth century, and at the Council of Trent one path was chosen over another.