Anvil is an Anglican evangelical journal of theology and mission. It aims to encourage clear and creative thinking and practice in theology and mission, through open, scholarly debate. While the journal stands clearly in an Anglican evangelical tradition, it seeks to engage constructively with other other Christian traditions both within and beyond the Anglican Communion. Anvil has a particular concern to reflect the unity and diversity of the church worldwide.

We aim to publish original articles by contemporary writers, whether established or not, which are of high quality and theological substance.

We aim to review recently published books in the fields of:
- Biblical Studies
- Christian Doctrine and Philosophy
- Ethics, Pastoral Studies and Mission
- Worship and Spirituality
- Church History and Biography

Our reviews aim to help our readers keep abreast of recent scholarship and determine which new books they need to read.


Anvil is for people with an interest in theology, but with limited time to read deeply. They may be well-informed lay people, ordained in parish ministry, or training for ministry in the church. They tend to be people who wish to study theology and mission in order to apply it within their lives and churches.

Anvil tries to reach people in the Church of England, the wider Anglican Communion and beyond, who have an interest in and influence upon the practical out-working of theology and mission. These are people who take their faith seriously. They may find popular magazines too light-weight, or may find many serious journals too academic.


Anvil began in 1984 as an initiative of the six Anglican evangelical theological colleges and the Church of England Evangelical Council. Their concern was to have a journal which focused on theology and mission, which was open to the whole range of Anglican evangelical thought and debate, and which provided an arena for discussion and debate on issues of concern to the church. Contributors and articles were intended to be (in the main) from the full breadth of the Anglican evangelical spectrum, but also including wider perspectives (from outside Anglicanism and from outside Evangelicalism) where it was helpful and appropriate.

Why did Anvil come into being at that particular time? Shortly before, most of the Editorial Board of the Anglican evangelical journal Churchman had been removed by the owners of that journal, the Council of Church Society. The grounds for their removal seemed to be a concern that articles and book reviews in Churchman were expressing views or coming from perspectives which the Council of Church Society regarded as unacceptable in a journal aimed primarily (but not exclusively) at the Anglican evangelical family. A short series of articles on the nature and interpretation of Scripture were highlighted as exemplifying this concern; the views expressed in some of these articles were considered not to be appropriate in an Anglican evangelical journal of theology.

Those removed from the Editorial Board, and a good number of others, believed that it was important to have a journal representing the full range of the Anglican evangelical spectrum, rather than a narrower range of views - and so they began the consultations which resulted in the beginning of Anvil. Along the way, the journal self-consciously took on the mantle of being a journal 'for theology and mission ', recognising the vital importance of the gospel imperative to late twentieth-century Anglican churches. The first volume included an assessment of the state of Anglican Evangelicalism by Colin Buchanan and two fine articles on interpreting Scripture by John Goldingay - and the second issue of the year focused on the (then revolutionary) Tiller report on the future of the church's ministry.