Between Heaven and Earth grew out one of Helmut Thielicke’s visits to the United States in 1963, during which he travelled across the country preaching and lecturing. The conversations recorded here are the fruit of his more informal discussions with small groups of ministers, students and laymen. “You have disturbed our peace and upset our doubts,” said one pastor to Thielicke after a lecture. “You have freed the fettered and bound the wandering spirits,” said another. These passionate reactions speak eloquently for the controversies raised in this book.
The questions that American Christians asked of Thielicke are direct and wide-ranging, concerned not only with the fundamental problems of faith but with its bearing on issues of social and political morality. Thielicke’s answers, though equally direct, are neither simplistic nor dogmatic. His approach is refreshingly open and his conclusions emerge from a reasoned consideration of the evidence and alternative possibilities. Above all, Thielicke’s answers reveal the warmth and deep concern for humanity’s spiritual welfare that is at the root of his teaching and writing.
Originally translated and edited by the American Lutheran theologian John W. Doberstein, this reprinted edition of Between Heaven and Earth was published to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of Helmut Thielicke’s death.