No Place for Truth by David F. Wells

No Place for Truth

Has something indeed happened to evangelical theology and to evangelical churches? According to David Wells, the evidence indicates that evangelical pastors have abandoned their traditional role as ministers of the Word to become therapists and "managers of the small enterprises we call churches." Along with their parishioners, they have abandoned genuine Christianity and biblical truth in favor of the sort of inner-directed experiential religion...

Details No Place for Truth

TitleNo Place for Truth
Release DateDec 20th, 1994
GenreReligion, Theology, Cultural, Christian, Christianity, Church, Church History, Nonfiction

Reviews No Place for Truth

  • Jacob Aitken
    In a separate lecture elsewhere, Wells reported to his wife that when this book is published, he will receive a lot of criticism from the EVANGELICAL flank of the church. As some of the reviews below have shown, he was excatcly right.Wells's thesis can be summarized thus: "Since the church has adopted all the vestiges of modernity, it has become irrelevant to God, and as such can no longer deliver the demands of God to a dying people. This is so ...
  • Phil
    This is a major work by David Wells. Heavily footnoted, it takes a broad look at the history of not only evangelicalism but American culture in general. He deals in considerable depth with sociology, philosophy, history, and theology. The picture he paints of evangelicalism is certainly quite stark, although I think his context at Gordon-Conwell might have contributed to that, in the sense that some smaller schools that are more counter-cultural ...
  • Jon Pentecost
    Wow. If you have any kind of aspiration to be involved in full-time ministry at all, read this book. If you have wondered, or felt dissatisfied with the status-quo of the modern evangelical world, read this book. If you are tempted to feel discouraged from standing firm in the truth of Scripture because of pressures around you, read this book.I read this in 2018, the 25th anniversary of the book's publication; but the years that have passed have ...
  • Rebecca
    This book is amazing! It’s easily the best Christian book I’ve read in the past few years and maybe ever. Wells thoroughly explains how the precepts of modernity have replaced theology in the evangelical church with self-help psychology, and proposes that the solution lies not in revival, but in reformation. Theology matters, and unless we recover the truth of God’s holiness, the church will continue along its path of increasing shallowness...
  • William
    Wells offers a very good overview of the decline of Evangelicalism as it has gradually absorbed the thought and ethos of modernism. We often assume that our own era is normative or that things have always been, more or less, as they are, and yet as one reads the history of the Church major shifts over time become apparent. One often wonders how these enormous shifts happen, seemingly with no one noticing. Wells first looks at the way in which the...
  • Justin Daniel
    Last year, I read a book by David Wells called, “The Courage to be Protestant.” That book was a culmination of years of research to define why the Evangelical movement has been weakening for the great part of a century, exacerbated by the moral revolutions in the 1960’s onward. “No Place for Truth” is the first book in the series, and is the first of the four books I will try to read this year.Wells begins with a type of analogy of Wenh...
  • Maranatha
    This book is one of the most important books I have read that opens my eyes to see the problems of Evangelicalism. It is only later that I learned that Dr. Wells is approaching this from a Reformed perspective. The book definitely piques my interest in the relationship between faith and culture, the meaning of culture mandate, and the Reformed view of Scriptures and the world.
  • Terrence Daugherty
    I realize "sociology" is a near expletive in many Christian circles today, despite the works of such an outstanding man like Max Weber — a Protestant and a Calvinist most known for his Sociological and Economic works (and who is likewise cited by Wells) — but it would be wrong not to consider Wells' book a sociological work as well. It is undoubtedly a socio-theological analysis of American Evangelicalism at large. It is an indictment on the ...
  • Al Datum
    It’s difficult to describe this book adequately. David Wells sets out to explain why he believes Christian theology is dying in America. He surveys both a historical and cultural landscape that resonates with what I’ve seen in the churches I’ve attended over the years. Instead of a recognition and submission to God and his holiness, we content ourselves with slogans, with church growth strategies, with a faith that caters to our emotional d...
  • Justin
    This was an incredible read - a book that will stick with me for a very long time. At the same time it a labor of love to get through it, not because it was overly academic, but because it was very culture centered. I'm not used to reading about culture - secularism, modernism, etc - and anyone who isn't used to it will find it a bit straining to get through at times. That being said it is well worth it! This book isn't for everyone. It certainly...
  • Steve
    Compelling, though I did not read this until about 30 years after it came out (I purchased it around 1995 and it sat on my shelf). If anything, his prescient description of Protestant failure to keep Theology central has only gotten worse since the writing of the book. I will be talking about his main points with folks for years to come. I think he nails the following:A) American culture is not Christian culture - Christianity helped form AC, but...
  • David Martin
    "We need reformation rather than revival."I am so very grateful that I've come across this book and its author (thanks to a shoutout by Doug Wilson on his Plodcast. David Wells outlines the origin of the major challenges the church is facing in the postmodern world with more clarity and detail than I've seen in any other one place. This book is dense. This book bites. Listened to the audio over the past two and a half weeks or so, but hope to rea...
  • Paul Herriott
    David Wells, never ceases to challenge or instill a sense of urgency. He is a historian that is able to point to current trends with dire warning and also call the church back to truth. This book is wide ranging, covering a variety of issues brought by modernity and the tragic results they have burdened the church with. This book is 25 years old, and yet it isn't yet limited by the time in which it was written, in fact it is surprisingly current....
  • Wes F
    Incredibly relevant, insightful, and prophetic book on the state of Evangelicalism, at least as it stood in the 1980s & early 1990s. Started this book back at the beginning of the year (library book), but wasn't able to finish by the time we headed back overseas on Mar 4th. Checked out from library again and was able to finish on our vacation in Boston over Thanksgiving.
  • Michael Abraham
    Where has theology gone in our churches? Wells contends that pastors have forsaken their role as preachers of the Word and traded in biblical truth for personal experience. He wrote this book 25 years ago, sadly it seems things are only getting worse. A reformation is in need, Wells argues, and I hope you read this book and commit yourself making God's Word central to your church.
  • Dylan Hutchens
    a good book reinforcing some earlier suspicions I've had about our "modern times." Wells has been helpful in bringing this home from an historical perspective, although geographically located to America most of his conclusions are transferable to Australian contexts.
  • Ally
    Pessimistic and vaguely elitist. Good observation of how evangelical churches focus on self and feeling instead of objective truth. Since was written in the 90s could be updated to notice cultural impacts of internet instead of TV.
  • David Wile
    A great book by David Wells
  • John W. Dube
    Terrific! This book provides a detailed analysis of modernity's influence on the church. It's super helpful and a must read for pastors/leaders in the church.
  • Russ
    On the whole, Wells got for more right (dare I say prophetic?) than he got wrong.
  • Mark Evans
    Incredible blend of history, sociology and theology. Excellent but a very hard read.
  • Joshua D.
    I just finished reading David Wells' No Place for Truth, Or Whatever Happened to Evangelical Theology? I really liked the first 4 or 5 chapters, but think it went dramatically down hill from there. I suppose, more than anything, I was just annoyed with the negativity. Wells seems ready to bury the evangelical world. "We don't need revival, we need reformation." I largely agree with most of his critiques of evangelicals -- the large scale accommod...
  • J.A.A. Purves
    Wells's book is impressive. Based on a reading of this book alone, I would confidently say that he is one of the most intelligent and well-read modern theologians I have ever read. I had heard that this was something of a theological classic, and given that it was only published in 1993, I was doubtful that anyone could make such a claim just yet. But, the more I think about it, I think the claim is justified.Wells, with extensive Biblical schola...
  • John
    Wells examines the root causes of why theology is on the decline in the evangelical church. He concludes that the Church has embraced modernity without critically examining it. As Wells demonstrates, had the Church examined modernity, they would have discovered that it is inherently anti-theological. Modernity has brought specialization--divorcing theology from the Church, leaving theology in the hands of seminarians. But then seminarians have di...
  • T Oberholtzer
    We are living in a culture that has spiritually decayed into the foci of self & truth by absolute truth except the individual's personal opinion. Wells describes the long process of how & why we are in this self-destructive vacuum for real absolutes & the damaging effects on society & self without Divine Revelation & the power of the Gospel to transform from the inside out through faith in The resurrected Jesus, the living Savior.M...
  • Timothy Bertolet
    This book charts the decline of truth in the evangelical world. It surveys a cultural history of the rise of modernism and its effects on the evangelical world. The statistics are now dated but it charts the history and problems in the evangelical worldview that arose in the last half of the 20th century. It is still helpful because one can see how many of the observations have only intensified since David Wells first pointed them out over a deca...
  • Todd
    Dr. Wells' brilliant analysis of contemporary evangelicalism is one of the most important books I have read. Indeed, his entire four volume series is necessary reading for any pastor or layman who desires to understand why evangelicalism is the way it is, where it is going, and how to chart a path forward must read this book and its sequels. Wells sounds the dangers of modernity and observes through research how it has come to shape the church. T...
  • William Dicks
    The five books by Wells are a must read for every Christian today. They show the theological and moral bankruptcy of the modern church and calls for a theological reformation.The books are:1. No Place for Truth or Whatever Happened to Evangelical Theology?2. God in the Wasteland: The Reality of truth in a World of Fading Dreams3. Losing our Virtue: Why the Church Must Recover its Moral Vision4. Above All Earthly Pow'rs: Christ in a Postmodern Wor...
  • Steve Walker
    This is a very unsettling book. Like Mark Noll's "The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind" Wells, a Professor at Gordon=Conwell Seminary, documents the decline in importance of sound theology. This book came out almost 20 years ago. If anything the problem has gotten worse. Men and women ignoring sound doctrine and in some cases, the Gospels. Look at the Tea Party, the GOP and current thinking about you-name-it.
  • Adam Wilson
    My favorite book of all time. Wells so precisely cuts through the culture, and specifically analyzes how the culture has infiltrated and compromised so much of evangelicalism. Part historian, part theologian, part prophet, Wells is vigorous in his defense of the idea of truth, and specifically, of theology. His definition of theology has been crucial in shaping my understanding of my relationship with God and His Word.