Thick Theological Anthropology

Image by Eak K. from Pixabay

But it’s obvious that thin communal commitments do not lead to, and are not even conducive to, a thick theological anthropology, and it would be foolish to expect people held together by such weak confessional ties to share views that only make sense within the robust account of human life generated by historic Christian orthodoxy.

Alan Jacobs, “thick and thin”

Jacobs is comparing his experiences at Wheaton College, which has a detailed Statement of Faith that guides their common life, and his experiences at Baylor University, which does not.

I work at Baylor and I love Baylor, and I am fully on board with our Christian mission. But Jacobs is right–if the theological commitments that define the community are thin, consensus is, too, and all the more difficult to establish, maintain, and sustain.

Generally speaking, it is important for any community to agree upon what a human being is, what a human being is for, what it might mean for a human being to live a good life, and in what way human beings are flawed. If these questions are largely left untouched, the divergences carry you far afield from one another, as each faction retreats to its corner with those holding a common opinion.