Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Professor Releases E-Book on Prayer

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary Professor Ronald Cole-Turner, H. Parker Sharp Professor of Theology and Ethics, recently wrote Prayer in the Trinity, an e-book available for most e-readers including Kindle, iPad, and Nook through Amazon, Smashwords, and similar retailers. Price is just $2.99.

Most of us have trouble praying, and for a very good reason. We seem to know that theologically, prayer is impossible. Who are we to talk to God? How can our words mean anything to God? All the great theologians of prayer have recognized this. We cannot pray. But God is already doing what we cannot do. And God is inviting us to participate. We cannot initiate prayer, but we can join in, listening and responding to what God is already doing. The New Testament is very clear in saying that Jesus Christ prayed. More than that, he continues to pray for us even now, interceding on our behalf. On the basis of his prayers for us, our prayers for ourselves and for each other are lifted up and offered effectively on our behalf. Christ makes prayer possible. Likewise the Holy Spirit intercedes for us, probing the depths of our hidden selves and raising our deep yearnings to awareness and expression.

In the prayers of Christ and through the intercessions of the Spirit, God is already communicating, engaging us in what we experience as prayer. For this reason, we can see prayer as something that is already going on. It is not something we initiate. It is something we are invited to join.
Prayer in the Trinity explores at length the way the New Testament speaks of God and prayer. It draws on theologians from Origen to Moltmann, offering up an invitation to pray grounded in a distinctly Christian view of prayer.

In his teaching and writing, Cole-Turner relates theology and ethics to developments in science and technology. He is an ordained minister of the United Church of Christ, a founding member of the International Society for Science and Religion (currently serving as vice president), and has served on the advisory board of the John Templeton Foundation and the Metanexus Institute. Cole-Turner is the author of Transhumanism and Transcendence: Christian Hope in an Age of Technological Advancement,The New Genesis: Theology and the Genetic Revolution, the co-author (with Brent Waters) of Pastoral Genetics: Theology and Care at the Beginning of Life, the editor of Human Cloning: Religious Responses and of Beyond Cloning: Religion and the Remaking of Humanity, the co-editor of God and the Embryo: Religious Voices on Stem Cells and Cloning, editor of Design and Destiny: Jewish and Christian Perspectives on Human Germline Modification, and editor of Technology and Transcendence (in press). He is also the author of the popular baptism hymn, “Child of Blessing, Child of Promise.”

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary is a graduate professional institution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A). Founded in 1794, the Seminary is located in Pittsburgh, Pa. and more than 300 students are enrolled yearly in the degree programs. The Seminary prepares leaders who proclaim with great joy God’s message of good news in both word and deed. PTS is rooted in the Reformed history of faithfulness to Scripture and commitment to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

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