Analytic Theology

A Common Language Between Theology and Philosophy

Oliver Crisp and Analytic Theology

“Analytic theology . . . presses philosophical tools into theological service. In this case, this means adopting and adapting the rhetorical style, ambitions, and vocabulary of analytic philosophy to properly theological ends. Analytic theology is about the use of reason in its traditional handmaidenly role. Reason can provide knowledge of the world, but in theology it has an important procedural role, providing an argumentative framework and tools for the job.”

+ Oliver Crisp, professor of systematic theology, reflects on the Templeton-funded Analytic Theology Initiative at Fuller Seminary. More than just academic research, the Analytic Theology Initiative seeks to foster relationships among scholars interested in the intersection of theology and philosophy. Through weekly seminars, guest speakers present their work and discuss their ideas in a community of like-minded thinkers. Click here for articles, event information, and more.

+ Listen to lectures on analytic theology above, and learn more about future seminars here.

Careful Thinking on Behalf of the Church

+ “When we’re talking about God,” says Chris Woznicki, a PhD student in the Analytic Theology Initiative, “we can’t afford to be sloppy.” In the video above, Chris shares his passion for theology and his hopes for the church to be informed by careful thinking. Learn more about analytic theology here.

Oliver Crisp on Intellectual Formation

Analytic Theology and Prayer

Analytic Theology Seminar

+ Over the course of three years, the Analytic Theology Initiative will research prayer, divine love, and theological anthropology. The first year’s lectures use the tools of philosophy to think carefully about the nature of prayer. The following quotes are a sampling from the guest scholars and their work.

Kate Sonderegger“Prayer for much of the Christian tradition has caught up between two folded hands the ache of human life, our longing for purpose, the gnawing fears of everyday life, the inexplicable and cruel, the loss that stands in the midst of all things mortal, the hope that there is one who delivers, one who remains when all else goes down to the dust.”

+ Kate Sonderegger, professor of systematic theology at Virginia Theological Seminary. Listen to her lecture here.

Kevin Hector“Prayer can lay the foundation for a theological aesthetic since it transforms not only one’s heart but, in so doing, it transforms one’s way of perceiving the world.”

+ Kevin Hector, associate professor of theology and philosophy of religion at the University of Chicago. Listen to his lecture here.


Natalie Carnes“Analytic theology will not help one pray better if one simply wants to know how to philosophically describe a Christian phenomenon. Indeed, insofar as such desire bends toward curiosity, it works against the ends of prayer. . . . Analytic theology will be spiritually fruitful to the extent that it opens itself up to an end beyond analytic theology.”

+ Natalie Carnes, assistant professor of theology at Baylor University. Listen to her lecture here.

+ Study theology with Dr. Crisp and other faculty in Fuller’s School of Theology.