Book Review: Summa 21
Author Ronald Cooke presents the idea of Summa 21 as an updated Christian theology for the 21st century, attempting to reconcile 21st century knowledge, particularly scientific knowledge, with the faith of Christian theology. In this way he hopes to make it both accessible and acceptable to Millenials and generations beyond, as well as provide a framework to integrate new knowledge and discovery without marginalizing the Bible and its teachings.
I love the idea of Summa 21, particularly as it relates to acknowledging that science is important, indeed a gift given by God, and that scientists need to also acknowledge that the spiritual world is both real and relevant to their work. I feel that this has been missing and even purposely ignored in a lot of modern science, when really it isn’t a threat but a complement. I have to say I’m not on board with absolutely everything that Cooke presents, particularly about the nature of Jesus and the role of hell, but I love that he is quick to say that we need to respect other Christian beliefs, even if they conflict with our own, because we are all on the same journey to get to know God better. I think this is critical in any movement, but particularly Christianity. I think that the content is interesting, but the framework could use some refining, or possibly even creating a series. The last few chapters did not quite flow with the first, and I would have liked to see more reference details, like Scripture passages, translations, etc. Overall though a worthwhile and challenging read; I would recommend it to anyone looking to learn more about integrating faith and modernity.