Religion: Theologian Upstream

Swiss Theologian Karl Barth, 67, has given modern Protestants a lot to think about. In the '20s, almost singlehanded, Barth took Luther and Calvin down from the dusty bookshelves where liberal Protestants had put them, and roughly recalled theologians everywhere to some fundamentals.† In the '30s, Barth was one of the first European churchmen to attack the Nazis. But since the late '40s, Barth has played a different kind of role. In the political and spiritual battle of Communism and the democracies, he has become Europe's most respected Christian preacher of neutralism.

This week, in a book called Against the Stream (Philosophical...

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