2024 Christianity Today Book Award Finalist - Theology (popular)
The Christian life is grounded in God’s act of creation—so an awareness of God’s purposes in creation is deeply practical for all believers, not just those who are involved in debates over faith and science. In Ordinary Splendor: Living in God’s Creation, Lydia Jaeger presents the doctrine of creation in all its practical necessity. She unfolds the majesty of God’s creative work and explores how it shapes and informs everything—from our relationships and the way we pray to how we think about human dignity.
Through her engagement with theologians, Greek mythology, philosophers, and other creation stories from the ancient Near East, Jaeger offers a rich reading of biblical creation passages that provides wisdom for our daily lives.
Here is a doctrine of creation that focuses—rightly in my opinion—less on origins than on ongoings, namely, the practical consequences of our createdness for everyday human existence. Jaeger argues convincingly that human flourishing, in every aspect of our lives, depends entirely on living in dependence on God, and along the grain of the created order. Ordinary Splendor confirms Calvin’s belief that there is no knowledge of what it is to be human without knowledge of God the Creator.
—Kevin J. Vanhoozer, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
This book, on how taking the biblical teaching on creation seriously will enrich our lives, is a delight to read. Behind the friendly and engaging style—full of good sense and clear Christian commitment—lies a great deal of deep and careful reflection. You will enjoy Professor Jaeger’s company as she leads you to a fuller love for your Creator and for his creation.
—C. John Collins, Covenant Theological Seminary
Jaeger guides us beyond simply understanding the distinctions between world views that a biblical doctrine of creation marks out. With clarity and elegance, she moves the heart to appreciate the real-life implications that belief in a transcendent Creator-God entails. As much as I have studied and taught on this topic, every chapter contains some nuance I had never before considered.
—John W. Hilber, McMaster Divinity College
Lydia Jaeger moves seamlessly between thought and practice, ancient and contemporary issues, biblical conviction and cultural engagement, in this timeless yet also quite timely work on the gracious gift that God has given to us and what kind of life that demands of us. I continue to learn from Professor Jaeger, and I’m always impressed with her balance of biblical certainty and grace. This book is no exception.
—Geoffrey H. Fulkerson, Dordt University
Lydia Jaeger is lecturer and academic dean at Nogent Bible Institute (IBN) in Nogent-sur-Marne, France, and author of What the Heavens Declare and Einstein, Polanyi, and the Laws of Nature.