Deerfield, IL — The Henry Center for Theological Understanding is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2021–2022 Henry Resident Fellowship. This year’s recipients are: Christina Bieber Lake, Gijsbert van den Brink, James Arcadi, Philip Woodward, and Jon Thompson. The Resident Fellowship program is the centerpiece of the Henry Center’s Creation Project, a multi-million dollar grant funded by the John Templeton Foundation. The Fellowship is a scholar-in-residence program designed to support and stimulate evangelical scholarship on the doctrine of creation, in dialogue with modern science, for the welfare of the church.

This year’s Fellows will leave their home communities and reside on Trinity’s Deerfield campus, creating a collaborative learning environment throughout the academic year while working on their own research projects. These Fellows are experts in literature, theology, and philosophy. They hope to continue the good work begun by the previous Fellows of the past five years as they continue to move the conversation about the doctrine of creation forward within the evangelical academy.

Theological Anthropology Revisited

Their research projects will specifically address questions related to theological anthropology. Few phrases in the Bible have stood as persistently at the head of theological reflection as “the image of God”—both as created and fallen “in Adam” and made anew “in Christ.” For generations, this shorthand expression has provided the church with the biblical answer to the question of what it means to be human. But however perennial the idea may be, theologians and biblical scholars have yet to arrive at a consensus about its meaning in Genesis and its reverberations in the New Testament. This uncertainty within biblical interpretation has been accompanied by wider socio-cultural confusion and disagreement about our human nature. This year’s Fellows, from their unique areas of expertise, will together engage afresh the most intimate of all questions that confront us: who and what are we?

This year will bring biblical and theological considerations into constructive dialogue with insights from disciplines such as neuroscience, biology, ecology, and cognitive science. These Fellows will turn their attention to the human person as they work on various projects related to theological anthropology.

Stories which introduce the Fellows and their projects will run on Sapientia—the online periodical of the Henry Center—in the coming weeks.

2021–2022 Henry Resident Fellows

Christina Bieber Lake
Clyde S. Kilby Professor of English, Wheaton College
“Designed to Attend: Toward a Theology of the Literary Imagination”
Gijsbert van den Brink
University Research Chair for Theology & Science, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
“Theological Anthropology in the Anthropocene”
James M. Arcadi
Assistant Professor of Systematic Theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
“The Priesthood of All Humanity”
Philip Woodward
Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Niagara University
“Human Persons: A Contemporary Philosophical-Scientific Synthesis”
Jon W. Thompson
Postdoctoral Research Associate, The Faraday Institute for Science & Religion
“Embodied Cognition, Hylomorphism, and the Resurrection of the Body”

The Creation Project will span three years—each covering a distinct theme and set of issues—and five programs, directed toward academic and ecclesial engagement with the doctrine of creation in all of its historical, theological, and scientific complexity. The project’s academic engagement is committed to making progress in understanding about where the conflict between the current state of scientific inquiry and classic theological positions is real and where it is illusory. The ecclesially oriented programs aim to revive the importance and breadth of the doctrine of creation beyond the narrow set of questions to which it has too often been reduced, to promote biblical fidelity and thoughtful interpretation, and to demonstrate a form of Christian intellectual hospitality that approaches the difficult questions of our age with a posture of humility and in pursuit of greater understanding.

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The Carl F. H. Henry Center for Theological Understanding is dedicated to the advancement of Christian wisdom in all areas of life and thought for the glory of God, the good of his church, and the welfare of the world. As an outreach ministry of Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, the Center embodies the vision of Carl F. H. Henry (1913-2003), a long-time faculty member at Trinity, which promotes the need for evangelical collaboration and commitment to God’s Word, where scholars with expertise in the relevant areas can work together to engage the pressing challenges of the day.