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Against the Darkness: The Doctrine of Angels, Satan, and Demons

By Graham A. Cole, Series edited by John S. Feinberg

Against the Darkness

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Against the Darkness: The Doctrine of Angels, Satan, and Demons

By Graham A. Cole, Series edited by John S. Feinberg

Many Christians live as though they are effectively alone. However, there is another realm of intelligent life that plays a role in the world—angelic beings. This book explores the doctrine of angels and demons, answering key questions about their nature and the implications for Christians’ beliefs and behavior, helping readers see their place in the larger biblical plotline that includes supernatural beings. An understanding of the reality of angels and demons encourages believers to be vigilant in the light of spiritual warfare and to be confident in Christ’s victory on the cross.


Author:

Graham A. Cole (ThD, Australian College of Theology) is the dean and professor of biblical and systematic theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. An ordained Anglican minister, he has served in two parishes and was formerly the principal of Ridley College. Graham lives in Libertyville, Illinois, with his wife, Jules. He is a member at Church of the Redeemer in Highwood, Illinois.


Table of Contents:

Series Introduction
Preface
Abbreviations

1. Introduction

2. Angels, Their Kinds, and Heavenly Activity
Excursus: The Nature of Spirit

3. Angels, Their Activity on Earth with Individuals and Nations
Excursus: Angelophany

4. Satan, the Malevolent Spoiler

5. Demons, the Devil’s Entourage
Excursus: Genesis 6:1-4 and the Methodological Question

6. Jesus, Christus Victor

7. Spiritual Warfare
Excursus: How to Test the Spirits

8. The Destiny of the Darkness and the Victory of the Light
Excursus: The Archangel Michael and the Man of Lawlessness

9. Conclusion

Appendix 1: The Creation Manifold 
Appendix 2: Angels, Iblis and Jinn in Islam
Appendix 3: Creeds, Articles of Faith, Catechisms, and Confessions
Further Reading
Glossary
Scripture Index
General Index


Endorsements:

“In Against the Darkness, Graham Cole demonstrates once again why he is considered a trusted theological voice for our time. Bringing his careful research and wide-ranging interaction with major theological voices throughout the centuries alongside his own fresh theological engagement, Cole applies his superb theological skills to the oft-neglected themes of angels, Satan, and demons. Moreover, this thoughtfully designed and accessible volume offers several fuller treatments of controversial subjects and challenging biblical texts, providing readers an opportunity to learn from Cole’s insightful wisdom. It is a genuine joy to recommend this thoroughly biblical, theologically faithful, and purposefully pastoral contribution to the highly regarded Foundations of Evangelical Theology series.”
David S. Dockery, Chancellor, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

“While the doctrine of angels and demons may be less central than doctrines such as the Trinity, the hypostatic union, and substitutionary atonement, nevertheless angels and demons play a role in nearly every other doctrine of the Christian faith. In fact, what Graham Cole successfully does in this volume is demonstrate just how important their role is to the outworking of God’s plans and purposes in creation, in providence, and in all of redemptive history. I am deeply grateful for the careful attention he has shown to biblical teaching, along with his fair and winsome interaction with scholarship throughout this volume. The Christian faith as well as the Christian life is affected by the role and activity of angels and demons in significant ways, and this volume goes a long way in informing us of just how much we may have been missing.”
Bruce A. Ware, T. Rupert and Lucille Coleman Professor of Christian Theology, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

“The structure of this book contributes to its appeal. The nine chapters cover the theological meat of the theme, the five excursuses address such sidebars as the meaning of Genesis 6:1–4 and how to test the spirits, and the three appendices survey adjacent but highly relevant themes (how these themes are treated in Islam on the one hand, and in various Christian creeds on the other). The book is comprehensive and edifying—and more important than one might initially think, in a culture that wants to be touched by an angel.”
D. A. Carson, Emeritus Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; Cofounder, The Gospel Coalition

“In a modern secular age, it is all too easy for Christians to overlook the major source of conflict in the drama of redemption: the devilish powers of darkness that seek to seduce hearts away from the truth of the gospel with glittering images and empty promises. Graham Cole rightly reminds us that, while angels and demons are not at the heart of biblical revelation, to ignore them is to risk being blindsided. Against the Darkness is a model of how to judiciously read Scripture and formulate Christian doctrine on matters that are both peripheral and essential to the Bible’s main storyline. This is theology for the twenty-first-century church, and Cole helpfully draws out the pastoral implications of angelology and demonology—all the while never losing sight of the centrality of Jesus Christ and his lordship over the angelic and earthly realms.”
Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Research Professor of Systematic Theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; author, The Drama of Doctrine; Hearers and Doers; Biblical Authority after Babel; and Faith Speaking Understanding

“We live in a culture that pretends the spiritual realm does not exist. Reducing that which is real to that which can be seen and touched, our culture catechizes its pupils in a worldview that dismisses angels and demons. It laughs at those who believe in the devil and his hell. So when we act disinterested in angels, Satan, and demons, we invite this secular outlook to control the biblical narrative. Although we profess faith in a God who has overcome the evil one, in reality our indifference reveals us to be practical atheists. Graham Cole exposes this blind spot, demonstrating that our theology of angels, Satan, and demons is not irrelevant but takes us to the center of the gospel itself. For if Christ has suffered for our sins and risen for our justification, then Satan no longer has power and victory over us. Read Against the Darkness and discover how God has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son.”
Matthew Barrett, Associate Professor of Christian Theology, Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary; Executive Editor, Credo Magazine; editor, Reformation Theology

“This is theology at its best. Written by one of evangelicalism’s finest theologians, Against the Darkness is biblical, systematic, pastoral, fresh, and faithful. It is exegetically driven, historically rooted, philosophically astute, globally aware, systematically related, and crisply written. And it is downright interesting, addressing pressing questions with carefulness and candor.”
Christopher W. Morgan, Dean and Professor of Theology, California Baptist University; editor, Theology in Community series; coeditor, ESV Systematic Theology Study Bible

“We commit heresy by contradicting or distorting Biblical revelation. We also commit heresy by politely ignoring the bits we find difficult or unacceptable! So even in orthodox circles, we commit heresy by ignoring what the Bible reveals about angels, Satan, and demons. We are syncretists, captive to the rationalistic Enlightenment. What we ignore in the Biblical revelation distorts our gospel preaching and teaching. Graham Cole’s excellent book is a timely and judicious study of what the Bible teaches on these topics, in the context of historical theology, contemporary thinking, and the practice of Christian life and ministry. He shows us that we must not misunderstand these topics, but that we also cannot ignore them. We need this book!”
Peter Adam, Vicar Emeritus, St. Jude’s Carlton; Former Principal, Ridley College, Melbourne


Specifications:

Category: Theology
Format: Printed Caseside
Case Quantity: 10
Page Count: 272
ISBN-10: 1-4335-3315-4
ISBN-13: 978-1-4335-3315-0
Size: 6.0 in x 9.0 in
Weight: 17.89 ounces
Published: November 12, 2019