Re: theology (Was Re: Did Peter walk on water?)

From: Walter Hicks (
Date: Thu Oct 03 2002 - 09:35:10 EDT

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    Let us stop at this point and agree upon what you last said. I have
    no problem with that and I
    don't know of any sermon or Bible study in my church where it has
    ever stopped at historical
    content and did not delve into the message behind it. However, I
    personally will never be able to
    turn that equation around and accept anything said of/by Jesus unless
    it is truly factual.



    George Murphy wrote:

    > Walter Hicks wrote:
    > >
    > > george murphy wrote:
    > >
    > > >
    > > > Scripture is the primary witness to God's historical
    >revelation which culminates
    > > > in Christ, and is the basis for the proclamation of law and
    >(preeminently) gospel.
    > > > Scripture consists of many different types of
    >literature - historical narrative,
    > > > legal codes, prayer, liturgy, fiction, saga, &c. To a
    >considerable extent the character
    > > > of a particular biblical text must be determined by the same
    >types of analysis used with
    > > > other literature. But when this analysis has been done it is
    >necessary theologically to
    > > > put scripture back together, to recognize that the various
    >parts do form a whole, the
    > > > canon, whose unity consists in the fact that it is "the primary
    >witness to God's
    > > > historical revelation which culminates in Christ."
    > > > I do not necessarily "steer away" from Tyndale or other
    >more or less
    > > > conservative interpretations of scripture & in fact often find
    >them helpful. Because
    > > > they can remain aware of the fundamental purpose of the Bible
    >and the unity of
    > > > scripture, they often have insights that scholars who use
    >historical-critical methods,
    > > > and who may be excessively concerned with the analytic task,
    >lack. But conservative
    > > > scholars, if they are unwilling to give serious consideration
    >to the possibility of
    > > > literary genres besides historical narrative, _may_ (N.B., I do
    >not say "must") be so
    > > > focused on a defence of the historicity of a text that they
    >miss what the text is really
    > > > saying.
    > >
    > > I guess that I feel very comfortable until the last sentence --
    >then I get very
    > > uncomfortable.
    > >
    > > Being historical (I would use the word "factual" --- as in really
    >happened as a event) does
    > > not detract from scripture in my mind. (I don't mean "just
    >historical" like you don't mean
    > > "just a story"). I view factuality as a positive thing and a lack
    >of it as somewhat
    > > negative. If Jesus never said some of things that are attributed
    >to him, or events
    > > (concerning Jesus) that are cited never really happened, then I
    >question the validity of the
    > > conclusions.
    > >
    > > So, if Jesus really said or did something, it carries a lot
    >(infinite) of weight in my mind.
    > > If, however, it is a theological treatise by somebody, it is open
    >to question no matter what
    > > the motivation of the author and how wonderful his theology might
    >be. It is a non-trivial
    > > distinction (IMO).
    > Please note my qualifications in that final sentence. "If
    >they are unwilling
    > ... they MAY be ... ." It is possible for a person to be so
    >concerned to show that
    > Jesus really did turn water into wine that he/she forgets the
    >meaning of that story -
    > or, to be more explicit, forgets the meaning of the event - of what
    >the gospel calls a
    > "sign." This of course does not mean that emphasis on its function
    >as a sign requires
    > ignoring the question of whether or not it really happened.
    > Shalom,
    > George
    > George L. Murphy

    Walt Hicks <>

    In any consistent theory, there must exist true but not provable statements. (Godel's Theorem)

    You can only find the truth with logic If you have already found the truth without it. (G.K. Chesterton) ===================================

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