The Moral Act of Reading: A Response to Deconstructionism

In the late 19th century, Friedrich Nietzsche captured in striking words the chaos into which the 20th and 21st century world would be plunged, writing in his The Gay Science¸ What were we doing when we unchained this earth from its sun? Where is it moving to now? Where are we moving to? Away from … Continue reading The Moral Act of Reading: A Response to Deconstructionism

Advertisements

Luther’s Sola Scriptura Part 3: Sufficiency

Throughout Luther’s attacks on Roman doctrine, he makes his primary appeals to Scripture, enlisting the Father’s support only to show his ideas were not novel. In stark contrast, as exemplified by the Papal Bulls, his opponents considered the Fathers and Councils to be additional sources for doctrine alongside the authoritative Scriptures. Of the errors condemned … Continue reading Luther’s Sola Scriptura Part 3: Sufficiency

Luther’s Sola Scriptura Part 2: Clarity

In Luther’s eyes, his opponents believed Scripture to be obscure and unclear (Luther 1997b, 255): the Papists, writes Luther, “adhere to [the interpretation of the Fathers] and believe that in these interpretations they possess something that no one could reject, and claim again and again in order to keep us away from the pure Word … Continue reading Luther’s Sola Scriptura Part 2: Clarity

Luther Against the Neo-Orthodox on Inerrancy

Many modern interpreters debate Luther’s doctrine of inerrancy: they argue that Luther held a position later associated with Neo-orthodoxy (e.g., Karl Barth). Luther, it is said, did not hold to a view of verbal-plenary inspiration nor of an inerrant text. For Luther, it is claimed, the form of Scripture was not inerrant and authoritative: inerrancy … Continue reading Luther Against the Neo-Orthodox on Inerrancy

Luther’s Sola Scriptura Part 1 – Inerrancy and Authority

In the controversy that followed the posting of Luther’s 95 theses in 1517, it is readily apparent Luther and his opponents are vast distances from one another on the question of interpretive authority. Luther’s opponents agreed with him on the infallibility or inerrancy of Scripture (the nature of being free from error) and its authority, … Continue reading Luther’s Sola Scriptura Part 1 – Inerrancy and Authority

A Critical Review of Dempster’s Dominion and Dynasty

Dempster’s attempt to read the whole Bible literarily fails to consider what the OT is and the contribution its nature and structure make to the question of the OT’s unity. By seeking the unity of the OT in a narrative plot unpacking the themes of dominion and dynasty, Dempster forces the OT into a procrustean … Continue reading A Critical Review of Dempster’s Dominion and Dynasty

Luther’s Hermeneutic

Central to Luther's doctrine of Scripture was the claim that Scripture was clear; from this doctrine of the clarity (or perspicuity) of Scripture came Luther's method of interpretation (or hermeneutic). Because the clarity of Scripture is a property of the text itself on account of God’s authorship, Luther’s primary hermeneutical approach is prayerful mediation upon … Continue reading Luther’s Hermeneutic

Some Thoughts on Philip Schaff’s The Principle of Protestantism

In part one of his book the Principle of Protestantism, Philip Schaff sketches the two-sided (material and formal) principle he sees to be the essential positive element of the Reformation; that is, the progressive element the Reformation contributed to the evolution of the Catholic Church. The second part addresses the relation of this principle to … Continue reading Some Thoughts on Philip Schaff’s The Principle of Protestantism

Some Thoughts on Braaten and Jenson, The Catholicity of the Reformation

In the section Structures of Authority in his essay, The Problem of Authority in the Church, Carl E. Braaten argues that the Reformation was catholic in the way it viewed the relationship between Scripture and the church. Braaten argues beforehand that the church needs a way to identify and denounce heresy; to do so there … Continue reading Some Thoughts on Braaten and Jenson, The Catholicity of the Reformation

The Co-Inherence of Authority, Inerrancy and Trustworthiness

[This accompanies this post] Wait a second, you may be thinking, you are fallaciously connecting ideas that are not necessarily connected: is authority really so connected to inerrancy? Yet, are they not? Let us ask ourselves, what do we mean when we call Scripture ‘authoritative’? We are affirming, with all of the writers of Scripture … Continue reading The Co-Inherence of Authority, Inerrancy and Trustworthiness