The Praise of Folly: The Enigmatic Life and Theology of C.I. Scofield is a title that may raise some eyebrows. Scofield, of course, is most famous for his Scofield Reference Bible, with its doctrinal notes.
The book is a fascinating read, no matter what side of the dispensational-covenantal divide you find yourself on. Lutzweiler presents a well-researched, historical account of Scofield’s life, and sprinkles in some thoughts on the rise of dispensationalism and its deficiencies as a theological system, to boot.
At times, I felt that Lutzweiler may have been encouraging his readers to jump to conclusions too quickly. And it is also quite true that even if Scofield is shown to be a dishonorable man, in certain respects (such as his treatment of his ex-wife and his children), still that should not necessarily invalidate the teaching of dispensationalism. Still at the end of the day, I think Lutzweiler’s depiction of Scofield and the history of the Plymouth Brethren movement should give a reason to pause in one’s evaluation of dispensational theology. A modernistic, self-centered, everyone-can-do-their-own-theology may be behind the rise of this system of thought. And while ultimately the arguments have to go to Scripture, this nevertheless weakens the dispensational claims to historic support for their particular doctrinal emphases.
In any case, this book by Lutzweiler deserves to be read and considered. And it is available as a free ebook download now through Saturday evening (12/17/11). You can pick up a hard copy of the book direct from Apologetics Media Group (a division of, The Nicene Council), or from one of the following online retailers: Monergism Books, CBD, or Amazon. There is also a DVD available based on this book (get it at Monergism Books or from the publisher). You can also purchase the ebook at a low price here.
Disclaimer: This book was provided by Apologetics Media Group. I was under no obligation to offer a favorable review.
About Book Briefs: With limited time available to give every book sent my way a full review, I\’ll be offering short-form book reviews called Book Briefs. Book Briefs are book notes, or my impression and informed evaluation of a book, but they stop short of being a full book review.