Biblical Critical Theory Guided Reading Group

“A book that I have been eagerly anticipating for years. …”

– Tim Keller

For Christians interested in biblically faithful cultural critique and construction, Chris Watkins’ Biblical Critical Theory (BCT) has been garnering no end of praise, and generating a great deal of giddiness. Rightly so. This is one occasion when you can believe the hype.  The book is big, it’s bold, it’s beautifully written and it’s arrived not a moment too soon as we try and make sense of our bewildering late modern world, and offer a big, bold and beautiful alternative. Chris takes away our blunt machetes and gives us a scalpel, indeed he’s offered us a whole set of diagnostic and surgical tools. Biblical Critical Theory will become a seminal text for us: part manifesto, part Bible overview (the most maximal one imaginable), part blueprint for civilization. It’s a revelation about the implications and applications of God’s revelation and how Jesus Christ is the subversive fulfilment of all and every culture(s). As Chris says in the introduction;

My aim in these pages is to paint a picture of humanity and of our world through the lens of the Bible and to compare aspects of this image to alternative visions. It is a book about how the whole Bible sheds light on the whole of life, how we can read and understand our society, our culture, and ourselves through the lens of the Bible’s storyline. It does not try to explain and defend the Bible to the culture; it seeks to analyze and critique the culture through the Bible. (xxvi)

In terms of Christian doctrine, Chris admits that he is saying nothing new, but the arrangement of the material is menthol fresh, his conversation partners are the heavyweights, and his writing is a model of elegance, engagement and empathy. From first steps in Christian discipleship, to catechesis, seminary, and through to the highest level of academic research, Chris’s work in Biblical Critical Theory will be a foundation and frame for years to come. Moreover, one will finish Biblical Critical Theory in a doxological mood, lost in wonder, love and praise in our wonderful Creator and Redeemer.

A title like this, indeed the actual title (!) might appear somewhat intimidating, and at nearly 700 pages, the book certainly may look indigestible (even though Chris calls it a ‘tasting menu’!).

So why don’t we read it together?

In 2023, Dan Strange will be chairing on-line reading groups to scale the heights of Biblical Critical Theory in six one-and-a-half hour sessions over a period of six months. Reading the book together will give some discipline and incentive to get through the book, and will also help us start to think through the applications of Biblical Critical Theory in our own lives, contexts and vocations.

So why don’t you join us?

Book now

Course dates and times (new dates released, see below)

All places are now fully booked for the reading group starting in January 2023.

Six sessions on Mondays via Zoom:

  • 16th Jan
  • 13th Feb
  • 13th March

April break

  • 15th May
  • 12th June
  • 17th July

There are two time options (UK time) available for the discussion group:

  • 10-11.30 am (full) or
  • 7.30-9 pm (full)
  • 12pm-1.30pm (full)

NEW Course Dates (May-Nov 2023)

Six sessions on Thursdays via Zoom:

  • 11th May
  • 8th June
  • 13th July

August break

  • 14th September
  • 12th October
  • 9th November

There are two time options (UK time) available for the discussion group:

  • 10am-11.30 am or
  • 12pm-1.30 pm


£60 for the six discussion sessions

Discounts are available for Partner Churches.
Should the course fee prevent you from attending please contact to discuss a discount.

Reading Group Chair: Dan Strange (Director, Crosslands Forum)
Book: Biblical Critical Theory: How the Bible’s Unfolding Story Makes Sense of Modern Life and Culture
Author: Chris Watkin

Book now