Re: personal revelations

From: Terry M. Gray (
Date: Thu Feb 20 2003 - 13:29:48 EST

  • Next message: John Burgeson: "Re: personal revelations"


    I'm always troubled by "motivation" arguments such as you have
    suggested. Gaffin, it seems to me, bases his argument on scripture
    (albeit not proof-texts). It does so happen that he also holds to
    inerrancy and the 'perfect "original autograph" theory' but, in this
    case, I don't see any evidence of theological gymnastics to preserve
    some traditional doctrine.

    As to the relevance to the "bible/science debate", I'm not
    necessarily out to squelch discussion here nor do I insist that the
    ASA hold to my cessationist views, but the ASA is committed to the
    authority of scripture. This "dampens" the significance of new
    revelations especially when they propose novel doctrines not found in
    scripture. I would be so bold as to suggest that if a particular view
    of God and his relationship to the world derives from another source
    than scripture, then it's in the category of myths and genealogies
    that Paul condemns in 1 Timothy. We do not profess on-going
    revelations to be our guide in matters of faith and conduct but
    rather the Bible alone.


    >It may be that a motivation for believing in the cessation of revelation
    >is to protect a "high view" of the troublesome inerrancy concept. It
    >would work in conjunction with the perfect "original autograph" theory
    >of the Bible to bolster the notion of the Bible's "special revelation"
    >character over against "general revelation." A common thread is that
    >none of these notions has proof texts. The discussion could have some
    >bearing on the bible/science debate.
    >This is certainly not a "Jesus told me" rambling!
    >"Terry M. Gray" wrote:
    >> The most convincing argument for me for the cessation of new word
    >> revelation is that put forth by Richard Gaffin in his Perspectives on
    >> Pentecost in the chapter on The Question of Cessation. This has been
    >> recently articulated in one of the Three (or Four) Views books
    >> published by Zondervan.
    >> It is not a proof-text based argument, but rather a
    >> redemptive-historical one that recognizes the uniqueness of the
    >> Christ event and the uniqueness of the apostolic witness to the
    >> Christ event and the foundational character of the early church
    >> apostles and prophets. The closest thing to a prooftext is in
    >> Ephesians 2 where Paul refers to the church being built on the
    >> foundations of the apostles and prophets. Thus, Acts and the early
    >> epistles are not normative in this regard--they are foundational and
    >> not to be repeated events much in the same way that Christ's death on
    >> the cross and resurrection is a foundational and not to be repeated
    >> event. There is indication that even by the time of the Timothy
    >> epistles, Jude, and 2 Peter of an appeal to the authority of the
    >> apostolic tradition (scripture) rather than to immediate revelations
    >> of the Spirit.
    >> I think that Don is mistaken when he says that all Christians accept
    >> "that Jesus' revelation was the culmination". It's mostly by way of
    >> lip service. TheJudeo-Christian message is primarily about what Jesus
    >> did in history to accomplish our salvation--it's not primarily about
    >> some subjective religious experience or knowledge. Much of
    >> Christendom is concerned about this subjective religious experience
    >> with little concern about what God actually accomplished in Christ
    >> 2000 years ago.
    >> The Jesus told me (apart from the Word) piety of much of modern
    >> evangelicalism is equally suspect. That which unites traditional
    >> Roman Catholic theology/piety, Pentecostal and charismatic theology,
    >> and many non-Christian religions is religious experience. The
    >> emphasis on the objective, historical facts of the doing and dying
    >> and rising again of Jesus Christ distinguishes Biblical Christianity
    >> from all these things.
    >> Now, having fired my theological blast, I do want to remind us again
    >> of the purposes of this group. As a group we're not interested in
    >> general issues of theology (such as this one), or general issues in
    >> politics or social concerns, but the intersection of Christian faith
    > > (as outlined in the ASA statement of faith) and scientific concerns.
    >> TG
    >> --
    >> _________________
    >> Terry M. Gray, Ph.D., Computer Support Scientist
    >> Chemistry Department, Colorado State University
    >> Fort Collins, Colorado 80523
    >> phone: 970-491-7003 fax: 970-491-1801

    Terry M. Gray, Ph.D., Computer Support Scientist
    Chemistry Department, Colorado State University
    Fort Collins, Colorado  80523
    phone: 970-491-7003 fax: 970-491-1801

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