A Short Review of Tennent’s Christianity at the Religious Roundtable

ChristianityAtTheReligiousRoundtableChristianity at the Religious Roundtable by David Tennent is an evangelical Christian perspective on interfaith dialogue.

The introductory chapter on the nature and importance of interfaith dialogue from an evangelical perspective is excellent. Tennent points out the problems with religious relativism and with the insistence that claims of exclusivity must be abandoned by all participants in order to have real dialogue.

Provides good, short summaries of the history of various world religions.

The book’s format, an imagined dialogue between Tennent and adherents of various religions, comes with a huge potential for misrepresentation. However, I thought Tennent was very fair, often showing how common Christian arguments are unsuccessful and handling the objections of his interlocutors charitably.

The book explicitly avoids the topic of soteriology (what salvation is and how humans obtain it), which was unfortunate, since I think that’s one of the most interesting aspects of various religions.

Similarly, the dialogue often gets stalled on what are, in my opinion, far less interesting issues of abstract philosophy. Tennent argues that this discussion is important because it highlights how different Eastern and Western religions are in their basic conceptions of reality, logic, and thought, but it can make for somewhat dull reading.


Read the phenomenal first chapter. Skim the rest.