Re: The Problem of Liberal Theology

From: george murphy (
Date: Fri May 10 2002 - 15:49:17 EDT

  • Next message: Jan de Koning: "going away for a few days."

    JW Burgeson wrote:

    > George wrote: "I am not a liberal - a statement I make not to clear my
    > theological honor but because the theological truth that I think the Bible
    > conveys includes a great deal that many "liberals" wouldn't be interested in
    > defending (resurrection, Incarnation, &c)."
    > George -- you seem to have some views on "liberals" that I neither hold
    > myself nor do I personally know other "liberals" that hold them.
    > Perhaps we need new words, for example "far out liberal" to describe, for
    > example, Bultman. But even here at Iliff I find nobody seriously defending
    > Bultman's models. We do study them.

             Yes, the terms "liberal" and "conservative" seem of increasingly little
    value to me in theological discussion. If "liberal" simply meant someone who
    wasn't tied to a naive reading of the Bible and to traditional theological
    formulations of Christianity then I'd have no problem with having the term
    attached to myself. But if it means the liberal protestantism of the 19th
    century as represented in different ways by Schliermacher, Strauss or Harnack
    then I do. & to be more contemporary, I have no wish to be identified with the
    views of a John Spong or with those who are offended by traditional Christian
    claims of the uniqueness of Christ.
             I know that you are quite comfortable with the "liberal" label. I'm
    not. OTOH, I'm also not comfortable with the "conservative" one,
    though I would
    have been 25 years ago. I find it both amusing & at times annoying that a lot
    of people in the ASA think that I'm dangerously liberal while in Templeton-type
    circles I'm seen as quite conservative. I must be doing something right.
             BTW, you probably know what the fundamentalist said to the liberal:
    "I'll pretend you're a Christian if you'll pretend I'm a scholar."



    George L. Murphy
    "The Science-Theology Interface"

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Fri May 10 2002 - 16:11:11 EDT