Changing Gears

This blog has sought, over the last 5 years, to clarify the material principle of the Reformation, namely, the doctrine of justification. The debates with the Federal Vision have been geared towards this great doctrine. I am now officially giving notice that this blog will now shift gears to treat of the formal principle of the Reformation, namely, the doctrine of Scripture. We will not be putting aside the doctrine of justification. Indeed, one cannot, even the midst of such a shift, since the doctrine of justification and the doctrine of Scripture are inter-related. However, there is evidence that a massive buildup of scholarship is about to be unleashed on this doctrine. In Reformed circles, especially, over the next few years, we are going to see a lot of books and articles treating of this doctrine. In large part, this is in response to some of the challenges of the traditional doctrine that have been coming from various quarters (Peter Enns, A.T.B. McGowan, Carlos Bovell, Kenton Sparks, and Craig Allert). I’m sure there are others as well not on this list. I plan on attempting to read all the books I own on Scripture in the next 3-4 years. I’ll be blogging about what I read, and I hope and pray that the Christian church will once again confess its faith with regard to this vitally important and undergirding doctrine of Scripture. If God has not spoken, then we cannot live. For man lives by the Word of God. If Scripture falls, then so does every other doctrine.

Edit: Due to Reed’s request and Phil’s comment, I will just mention that the first two books I plan on reading are the following: volume 2 of Post-Reformation Reformed Dogmatics, by Richard Muller; and Disputations on Holy Scripture, by William Whitaker. After that, I plan on reading Warfield. For those who would like to read along with me, that’s my plan.

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54 Comments

  1. Admin said,

    May 19, 2010 at 9:33 am

    Most excellent news Lane. Your blog is a great tool and one which many of us have benefited from greatly over the years and the dedication and messages of the great doctrine of Reformation and justification by faith. Indeed, the need for biblical exposition and concentration on the Doctrine of Scripture cannot be overemphasized in our day and time. Thank you and we look forward to the posts and discussions.

  2. Todd Pruitt said,

    May 19, 2010 at 9:37 am

    Outstanding.

    You must enjoy the furnace! Seriously though I am glad you are taking this on. It has been disheartening to see the Scriptures come under such heavy attack by those who claim to be evangelical and even Reformed.

  3. Truth Unites... and Divides said,

    May 19, 2010 at 10:48 am

    Hi Green Baggins,

    Out of curiosity, do you like and/or do you affirm the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy?

  4. D. Philip Veitch said,

    May 19, 2010 at 10:55 am

    Will be following this closely and will join in the “reading effort,” Lord willing. This is good news.

    D. Philip Veitch

  5. Reed Here said,

    May 19, 2010 at 11:10 am

    Lane: about time ;-)

  6. greenbaggins said,

    May 19, 2010 at 11:10 am

    I do like the Chicago Statement very much, and can affirm almost everything in it. I’m not sure I agree with their definition of “infallible.” I would define it as meaning “incapable of erring.” As such, I view it as a much stronger term than “inerrant,” although I certainly agree with using that term of Scripture as well. Many human documents exist which might not have any errors in it, but to be incapable of falling into error implies a much higher standard.

  7. Truth Unites... and Divides said,

    May 19, 2010 at 11:20 am

    Thanks Green Baggins.

    I like and affirm CSBI as well. But on the various Christian blog sites that I frequent… there is quite a bit of disdain and dismissal for the doctrine of Inerrancy …. from other (professing) Christians.

  8. greenbaggins said,

    May 19, 2010 at 11:59 am

    I have edited the post for those who might want to read the same books I am reading.

  9. Reed Here said,

    May 19, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    Brothers and Sisters: I am quite pleased about this shift. Beginning some time last year I became convinced that this subject is going to become more and more critical for us.

    Over the past year it seems not a month goes by where I do not meet a young, devout, eagerly seeking reformed guy whom in some manner demonstrates a deformity in this area of his understanding of Scripture. This does not bode well for the next generation of the Church in our country.

    Anyway, thanks again Lane. Looking forward to learning with y’all.

  10. Wayne Sparkman said,

    May 19, 2010 at 12:49 pm

    Does this mean that in another five years we might expect to then turn to the subject of worship?

    [That was Calvin's other pillar of the Reformation, wasn't it?]

  11. greenbaggins said,

    May 19, 2010 at 1:06 pm

    Quite possibly, Wayne. I have been thinking a lot about worship as well.

  12. May 19, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    I own Warfield and Whitaker so let me know when you start Whitaker.

  13. greenbaggins said,

    May 19, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    I’m 87 pages into Whitaker.

  14. May 19, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    Guess I’d better catch up… :)

  15. Stephen Welch said,

    May 19, 2010 at 3:22 pm

    I have been reading Whitaker and it is the most helpful book on the subject of the authority of Scripture. It is a great apologetic in dealing with Papists.

  16. Dean B said,

    May 19, 2010 at 4:31 pm

    Pastor Lane

    I am looking forward to a five year discussion on this subject.

    Quote from #6: I’m not sure I agree with their definition of “infallible.” I would define it as meaning “incapable of erring. EOQ

    Do you think it is accurate to maintain that the original manuscripts were inspired and by its very definition they are infallible, but the current copies and translations are inerrant (free from error) because they lack inspiration?

  17. Tim Prussic said,

    May 19, 2010 at 5:11 pm

    I look forward to these discussions, Pastor. I think some of the dialogue between the boys over at Called to Communion and the boys here has been good and useful. I think further exploration of issues of epistemology and authority will be most helpful. Also, I applaud any discussion of PRRD (I’ve been working through the first volume).

    Lord Bless!

  18. Truth Unites... and Divides said,

    May 19, 2010 at 6:09 pm

    The decision to change gears coincides in a timely fashion with this blog post by Dr. Albert Mohler titled: Do We Really Know Jesus? Adam Gopnik and the Gospels.

    Excerpt: “Gopnik, raised in the context of secular Judaism, tells his readers that “the people who read and study the Gospels for a living” are “nearly certain” that the Gospels cannot be trusted as history. Evidently, he has been taking a serious look at the strange world of academic New Testament scholarship, where the liberal academy has virtually jettisoned any notion that the Bible was divinely inspired. Instead, they assume the Bible should be considered nothing more than a very influential example of ancient Near Eastern literature.
    ..

    Believing Christians will read Adam Gopnik’s essay with a mixture of interest and grief. If nothing else, his essay (along with almost all the books he mentions) reveals where we must go if we surrender the divine inspiration of the New Testament. Once we deny that the Bible is inspired by God, totally true, and to be trusted in every way, we are left with the Bible as nothing more than a literary project. Thus, the Bible is reduced to a fascinating example of ancient Near Eastern literature. The Gospels are reduced to mutually-dependent literary inventions, and Paul’s writings are easily dismissed as the rantings of a sexually-repressed man fueled by a convert’s zeal. If those characterizations ring familiar, you must feel right at home at the meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature.”

  19. Dean B said,

    May 19, 2010 at 7:02 pm

    Gopnik, raised in the context of secular Judaism, tells his readers that “the people who read and study the Gospels for a living” are “nearly certain” that the Gospels cannot be trusted as history. Evidently, he has been taking a serious look at the strange world of academic New Testament scholarship, where the liberal academy has virtually jettisoned any notion that the Bible was divinely inspired.

    I was watching a debate on youtube between James White and Jalal Abualrub. Jalal Abualrub whole argument was the Bible is untrustworthy not because he says it so but because every leading NT Christian scholar says it is so.

    Unfortunately, Jalal is correct when he says, “I will show you the proof from your books, not mine, So take your dispute with the historians – Christians! Don’t come and tell me this. Who said uh every single reference he mentioned, my opponent, has been disputed by the same scholars throughout the history.”

  20. Tim Vaughan said,

    May 19, 2010 at 7:36 pm

    The Reformed doctrine of Justification is only challenged in Reformed circles by conspiracy nuts in any event. So moving on is OK.

  21. May 20, 2010 at 7:21 am

    Amen Dean B.

    I have seen more than one person’s faith destroyed (and in one case mocked by a professor for the person’s “blind faith in a man-made document written by illiterate Jews”) in the first couple of weeks of a liberal seminaries Biblical Studies classes when unsuspecting naive students are thrown to the wolves of the satanic elements of Higher Criticism.

  22. May 20, 2010 at 8:08 am

    You can also read Whitaker’s work for free:

    http://www.google.com/books?id=PhYXAAAAIAAJ

  23. Truth Unites... and Divides said,

    May 20, 2010 at 2:54 pm

    Benjamin P. Glaser: “… unsuspecting naive students are thrown to the wolves of the satanic elements of Higher Criticism.”

    I would be interested in seeing a post or two addressing Higher Criticism methodology. And all its offshoots too: Source Criticism, Form Criticism, Canonical Criticism, etc….

    On a related note… there are a number of liberal heretics, apostates, and blasphemers in the Society of Biblical Literature. Why do relatively conservative, orthodox theologian-scholars think it’s wise to be part of this organization?

    Eg., In a electronic conversation with a well-renowned biblical scholar, he pooh-poohed inerrancy’s doctrinal importance (although he holds to a form of it), by saying that a Bible didn’t die on the Cross for people’s sins. He seemingly caricaturized inerrantists as being false idol worshippers of Scripture. And thus he’s able to academically and personally fellowship with liberal heretics, apostates, and blasphemers at SBL meetings by stating that there’s much to learn from them,

    and by extension, there’s much to learn from their methodology of Higher Criticism.

    Which Benjamin Glaser states has destroyed the faith of naive students.

    So I’m rather puzzled about Higher Criticism. It has destroyed people’s faith. Yet some conservative scholars think it’s perfectly fine. What gives?

  24. Tim Prussic said,

    May 20, 2010 at 3:40 pm

    “written by illiterate Jews” – now that’s a fun one!

  25. greenbaggins said,

    May 20, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    No doubt the importance of dealing with criticism in its various forms will be important, and I will seek to write about it sometime, even though it is not really part of the Doctrine of Scripture, so much as Hermeneutics.

    Higher Criticism has two definitions, and this is why I think it is simultaneously a whipping boy, and a sneak thief at the same time. Defined in its evil sense, it is an approach to Scripture that denies any kind of divine authorship by making Scripture entirely human. By atomizing the text into myriad tiny tidbits, there is nothing left of authorial intention, or any message of the whole.

    However, there is a definition of higher criticism that is orthodox. According to this definition, it is simply an interpretive discipline that seeks to delineate the literary aspects of the Biblical books. This discipline is far from being contradicting of a high view of Scripture, as long as various safeguards are put in place. For instance, the Bible is not like any other book in many important ways. However, there are literary aspects to the text, which can be gleaned with great profit. It can, in fact, be a way to get at authorial intent. Unfortunately, the negative definition has held sway for most of the last century. On the bright side, many scholars, even liberal ones, are recognizing that the atomistic approaches do not yield any net understanding of the text, and they are abandoning them for more holistic approaches to the text. This is resulting in much more positive appropriations. I speak in general terms, of course. One’s theology will always influence the outcome of one’s reading of Scripture. This is unavoidable.

  26. May 20, 2010 at 4:31 pm

    [...] All. I don’t need to overlap what he has already said regarding this most excellent work. It has been noted that this work is available on Google books. I would highly encourage the Roman Catholic readers of [...]

  27. May 21, 2010 at 12:36 am

    Regarding the doctrine of the inspiration, infallibility, and inerrancy of the Scriptures, a modern work you MUST read (if you haven’t) is: “Biblical Authority: A Critique of the Rogers/McKim Proposal” by John D. Woodbridge (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 1982), 237 pp. Woodbridge, at the time, was Professor of Church History at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois. (Now 69, he probably still is.)

    This book was a direct and explicit answer to the notorious Rogers/McKim Proposal, which sought, in the late 1970s, to re-define inerrancy. The late Eternity Magazine called it (Rogers/McKim, that is) one of the best books of that decade – which probably helps to explain why Eternity is “the late.”

    Woodbridge’s work is excellent – showing, from church history, that infallibility/inerrancy is most definitely NOT a modern idea (invented by Warfield, the liberals like to say).

    If you haven’t read it, Lane – read it!

  28. greenbaggins said,

    May 21, 2010 at 9:26 am

    I have the volume, Richard, and intend to read it. :-)

  29. D. T. King said,

    May 21, 2010 at 11:09 am

    In addition to the above recommendations, I would add the work of the Anglican, William Goode (1801-1868), to the list. His was one of the principal responses to the Tractarians, Newman, Pusey, & Keble (otherwise known as the Oxford movement). His work titled, The Divine Rule of Faith and Practice, responded to the Romanizing tendencies of the Tractarians with respect to their view of Holy Scripture and tradition.

    Goode’s work was first published in two volumes in 1842, and following Newman’s book An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine and subsequent conversion to the Roman communion in 1845, Goode’s work was published as a second edition in 1853 and expanded to 3 volumes. The 1853 3 volume edition can be downloaded from Internet Archives, and these are better .pdf files than those produced by Google.

    Volume 1 http://www.archive.org/details/divineruleoffait01good
    Volume 2 http://www.archive.org/details/divineruleoffait02good
    Volume 3 http://www.archive.org/details/divineruleoffait03good

  30. greenbaggins said,

    May 21, 2010 at 11:14 am

    Thanks very much, David. You saved me the work of recommending it (of course I would have given you the hat tip!) ;-)

  31. Truth Unites... and Divides said,

    May 21, 2010 at 11:27 am

    For this changing of the gears, would it be okay to assume Sola Scriptura?

    For that matter, I’m even okay with assuming Inerrancy.

    ——–

    BTW, are any of the Green Baggins co-authors or co-bloggers a member of the Society of Biblical Literature? Or are any of you knowledgeable about SBL? Why be a member of an organization where there are a number of influential scholars who deny some significant 1st-order and 2nd-order doctrines of historic biblical Christianity? Some of these SBL scholars are heretics, apostates, atheists, and blasphemers. Why have professional and personal fellowship with them?

  32. Reed Here said,

    May 21, 2010 at 11:38 am

    TU: not that I know of.

    I am a member B4 though: Bloviating Baboons Babbling on Blogs.

  33. Daniel Ritchie said,

    May 21, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    This question may not be suitable for this post, and if it is not please feel free not to answer it. However, this is something I have been mulling over for a while, namely, “Is the denial of biblical inerrancy a damnable heresy (i.e. a heresy so bad that anyone who holds to it cannot be a Christian)?”

    IMHO, denying inerrancy is a heresy, which could (logically) lead to damnable heresy, but is not (in and of itself) a damnable heresy.

    What do you think?

  34. greenbaggins said,

    May 21, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    It’s a good question, Daniel. At the very least, (and this is my current judgment, which may change later on after I’ve done my study on it) a denial of inerrancy is completely inconsistent with a belief that we are justified by faith alone, for how can we believe that we are saved by Christ unless we believe that He has said it? The temptation to disbelieve God has been present ever since the garden of Eden, when Satan said, “Has God really said?” However, one could conceive of people being saved and being inconsistent about their beliefs. We all have at least some inconsistencies in our doctrine. I may think differently later, but this is what I think now.

  35. Wayne Sparkman said,

    May 21, 2010 at 5:05 pm

    In partial answer to Daniel’s excellent question, I think there is a very purposeful reason why the so-called Higher Criticism focused on the Pentateuch:

    “For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote of Me.
    But if you do not believe his writtings, how will you believe My words?”
    [John 5:46-47]

    And isn’t this then the result?

  36. Tim Prussic said,

    May 21, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    #32, that was almost my blog’s phrase!

  37. Reed Here said,

    May 21, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    Daniel: good to hear from you! Excellent question indeed.

    I tend to follow Lane’s reasoning, although I admit I haven’t thought much about implications. Wayne’s observation seems helpful, although I expect those who deny inerrancy will object that they do indeed believe in Moses, just not the way an inerrantist does.

  38. D. T. King said,

    May 21, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    It doesn’t answer the above question head on, but I have nonetheless found Gregory’s words interesting…

    Gregory of Nazianzus (329/330-389): I remembered the days of old, and, recurring to one of the ancient histories, drew counsel for myself therefrom as to my present conduct; for let us not suppose these events to have been recorded without a purpose, nor that they are a mere assemblage of words and deeds gathered together for the pastime of those who listen to them, as a kind of bait for the ears, for the sole purpose of giving pleasure. Let us leave such jesting to the legends and the Greeks, who think but little of the truth, and enchant ear and mind by the charm of their fictions and the daintiness of their style.
    We however, who extend the accuracy of the Spirit to the merest stroke and tittle, will never admit the impious assertion that even the smallest matters were dealt with haphazard by those who have recorded them, and have thus been borne in mind down to the present day: on the contrary, their purpose has been to supply memorials and instructions for our consideration under similar circumstances, should such befall us, and that the examples of the past might serve as rules and models, for our warning and imitation. NPNF2: Vol. VII, Oration II, §104-105.
    Greek text: Ἐμνήσθην ἡμερῶν ἀρχαίων, καὶ πρός τινα τῶν παλαιῶν ἱστοριῶν ἀναδραμὼν, ἐκεῖθεν εἵλκυσα συμβουλὴν ἐμαυτῷ πρὸς τὰ παρόντα· μὴ γὰρ εἰκῆ ταῦτα συγγεγράφθαι νομίζωμεν, μηδὲ ὄχλον ἄλλως εἶναι ῥημάτων τε καὶ πραγμάτων, ψυχαγωγίας ἕνεκα τῶν ἀκουόντων συγκείμενα, καὶ οἷον ἀκοῆς τι δέλεαρ μέχρι τῆς ἡδονῆς ἱστάμενον. Ταῦτα μὲν παιζόντων μῦθοι καὶ Ἕλληνες, οἳ, τῆς ἀληθείας ὀλίγα φροντίζοντες, τῷ κομψῷ τῶν πλασμάτων καὶ τῷ λίχνῳ τῶν λέξεων καὶ ἀκοὴν καὶ ψυχὴν γοητεύουσιν.
    ΡΕʹ. Ἡμεῖς δὲ, οἱ καὶ μέχρι τῆς τυχούσης κεραίας καὶ γραμμῆς τοῦ πνεύματος τὴν ἀκρίβειαν (accuracy, better trans. “precision”) ἕλκοντες, οὔποτε δεξόμεθα, οὐ γὰρ ὅσιον, οὐδὲ τὰς ἐλαχίστας πράξεις εἰκῆ σπουδασθῆναι τοῖς ἀναγράψασι, καὶ μέχρι τοῦ παρόντος μνήμῃ διασω θῆναι· ἀλλʼ ἵνʼ ἡμεῖς ἔχωμεν ὑπομνήματα καὶ παιδεύματα τῆς τῶν ὁμοίων, εἴ ποτε συμπέσοι καιρὸς, διασκέψεως· ὥστε τὰ μὲν φεύγειν, τὰ δὲ αἱρεῖσθαι, οἷον κανόσι τισὶ καὶ τύποις, τοῖς προλαβοῦσιν ἑπόμενοι παραδείγμασι. Oratio II, §104-105, PG 35:504-505.

  39. Paige Britton said,

    May 21, 2010 at 8:13 pm

    “Is the denial of biblical inerrancy a damnable heresy (i.e. a heresy so bad that anyone who holds to it cannot be a Christian)?”

    I guess if we weighed in on this (in either direction), we’d have to define which version of “inerrancy” we’re talking about. The CSBI is far more nuanced and qualified than a notion of inerrancy that ignores biblical genre, is highly allergic to textual criticism of any kind, and basically thinks the Bible was dictated.

    How many months till you get to Andrew McGowan, Lane?

  40. Paige Britton said,

    May 21, 2010 at 8:18 pm

    BTW, here’s article XIX of the CSBI (what an alphabet soup sentence I just made!):

    We affirm that a confession of the full authority, infallibility, and inerrancy of Scripture is vital to a sound understanding of the whole of the Christian faith. We further affirm that such confession should lead to increasing conformity to the image of Christ.

    We deny that such confession is necessary for salvation. However, we further deny that inerrancy can be rejected without grave consequences both to the individual and to the Church.”

    Interesting, no?

  41. Richard said,

    May 22, 2010 at 2:48 am

    Daniel: As far as I am aware both Peter Enns and Kenton Sparks (I am only unsure of the former) both affirm inerrancy. Granted this is not the same ‘brand’ of inerrancy that Lane and Reed would be happy with but that would impact upon how one answered your question. The great strength of the CSBI is that it is trying to nuance our understanding of inerrancy so that we take into account the findings of believing biblical criticism, i.e. biblical criticism based upon Christian presuppositions. However we know that an acceptance of inerrancy does not reduce differences of opinion, just look at the issue of creation days in Gen. 1-2. One can affirm inerrancy and hold to YEC and yet one can also affirm inerrancy and hold to the framework hypothesis. Personally I think that hermeneutics will be far more an issue that one’s doctrine of scripture however I do recognise that they are related intimately. God bless!

  42. Daniel Ritchie said,

    May 22, 2010 at 5:18 am

    For the purposes of this discussion I am using the same definition of inerrancy that Lane and Reed have utilised.

    Thanks for the responses thus far, I will try to explain the context of the question later.

  43. Paige Britton said,

    May 22, 2010 at 5:56 am

    Richard –
    As far as I am aware both Peter Enns and Kenton Sparks (I am only unsure of the former) both affirm inerrancy.

    Perhaps the reason for the uncertainty is because Enns writes things like this:

    http://peterennsonline.com/ii/ii-denies-inerrancy/

    If he can just define “inerrancy” in his own way, rather than settling for the severely overqualified definition of the CSBI, then sure, he affirms it. It’s all about God’s intention, after all, and God does not lie. God might give the nod to a rabbinic fiction or two, though, but you’d have to check the ANE & 2nd Temple Lit to be sure. And then you can say, “What a great God, to have inerrantly reproduced the folk legends of that historical period, so we can feel at home with the humanness of Scripture!”

  44. Paige Britton said,

    May 22, 2010 at 6:00 am

    Oh, that’s funny, I put mock html tags all over that paragraph to indicate the ironic parts (most of it) but I guess I did it so convincingly that they were rendered invisible. Anyway, just assume irony there. (Don’t tar me with the wrong brush, please.)

  45. Reed Here said,

    May 22, 2010 at 6:54 am

    Richard: Paige has hit the head of the nail I wish you had hit. Its not that Enns and Spark define things different that one lightweight (sorry Lane, that’s you ;-) ) and one nobody sometimes wannabe (me). It is that the define it differently than those heavyweights who developed CBSI in the first place, let alone some “oddballs” like Warfield.

    I’m not trying to be obnoxious here. Rather, I’m asking for a bit more clarity. Your way of putting things sure makes it sound like a bit of an insignificant intramural debate. It is quite not.

  46. greenbaggins said,

    May 22, 2010 at 8:46 am

    Paige, not sure how long before I get to McGowan, though I certainly intend to read him. My intention is to read the orthodox position first and get a handle on the truth before I start dealing with some of the errors.

  47. Stephen Welch said,

    May 22, 2010 at 9:10 am

    Daniel raises a good point. Is inerrancy a damable heresy? There are certainly degrees of heresy, but the denial of inerrancy of Scripture, is the most serious because it is foundational to everything else. If the Scriptures are not without error how can we trust anything it says. There are certainly some scholars perhaps like Peter Enns who may not deny the authority of Scripture, but are on a slippery slope. I do not believe that one can be in a saving relationship with the Lord if he denys the authority of His word. In John Owen’s work on Apostasy From the Gospel he shows that a person’s claim to be a Christian may prove to be false if he denys something so basic as the doctrines of the gospel. He presents that there are degrees of apostasy and that a partial apostacy will lead to a denial of the faith. It is clear that one heresy will eventually lead to a rejection of the entire faith. We see this in many of the liberal denominations that have embraced the ordination of women and homosexuals; they rejected the authority of Scripture long ago.

  48. Daniel Ritchie said,

    May 22, 2010 at 9:57 am

    From what Lane, Reed, Wayne, Paige and Stephen have said I would still conclude that this proves that deniers of inerrancy are on a dangerous trajectory, which, if they follow their theories through to their logical conclusion, will lead them to outright liberalism and damnable heresy. However, I am not sure that men like Alistair McGrath, Alistair McGowan, et al have gone there yet. Nevertheless, it would not surprise me if that is where their followers eventually end up.

    Here is what I see as the dilemma: if we say that errantists can be Christians (and we turn out to be wrong) then we are giving damnable heretics a false sense of peace. On the other hand, if we judge them to be damnable heretics unjustly, then we are rejecting those whom Christ receives. Hence it seems that, either way, it is very important that we get this right.

  49. Paige Britton said,

    May 22, 2010 at 11:16 am

    I take Andrew McGowan with a grain of salt, but he does not set off alarm bells in my mind like Enns. (I look forward to hearing your take on McGowan’s thinking, Lane — so far I’ve read his Divine Spiration of Scripture and his chapter in the Barth book (which I have been told was particularly “boneheaded,” but I’d have to do a reread to see why).)

    I have never been much impressed with McGrath, except for his knowledge of church history. His negative take on Reformational word-centered worship in Christianity’s Dangerous Idea was downright weird.

  50. Daniel Ritchie said,

    May 22, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Yeah, CDI’s thesis was fundamentally wrong from the outset. He confuses the Reformer’s view of Scripture with the Anabaptist notion of solo scriptura.

    Perhaps there are better examples than those two [thanks for noting it is "Andrew" McGowan and not "Alistair"].

  51. Paige Britton said,

    May 22, 2010 at 12:15 pm

    Actually, it’s Andrew McGowan and Alister McGrath. (There’s also Alistair Begg and Alistair McIntyre, just to make things interesting!)

  52. May 22, 2010 at 12:18 pm

    Thanks Lane. You’ve earned a coveted spot back on my blogroll :).

    I’m glad you plan to blog your way through resources that are available to everyone and are the recognized standards in the field. Having come from a Fundamentalist background, I find myself bewildered by all the nuances of ‘inspiration’ coming from the broadly evangelical and reformed camps. I hope to read Whitaker along with you and take part in your posts.

    I can’t think of a more relevant topic!

    Andrew

  53. May 22, 2010 at 12:30 pm

    [...] LINK to POST   [...]

  54. Brad B said,

    May 22, 2010 at 11:39 pm

    From #25: “On the bright side, many scholars, even liberal ones, are recognizing that the atomistic approaches do not yield any net understanding of the text, and they are abandoning them for more holistic approaches to the text.”

    Holistic = Covenantal ?


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