Re: [asa] on "baconianism" & American evangelicals

From: George Murphy <>
Date: Wed Mar 07 2007 - 12:23:01 EST

Rich -

Thanks for your suggestion on getting around the Outlook formatting. I'm still puzzled on how to work with it. But now something more substantive on your comments below.

Scripture is to be the basis for evangelical theology but it is not just bare "facts" or "raw data." As witness to God's revelation it already contains theological reflection on the historical phenomena which constitute that revelation. Moreover, it contains theological reflection from different viewpoints or, to put it in a way that may be troubling for some Christians, it contains different theologies, such as pro- & anti- monarchy sources in I Samuel or Matthew & Paul. Theologians should not try to "harmonize" these different theological viewpoints in simplistic ways (e.g., by forcing Matthew into a Pauline mold) but should try to understand how both can be seen as


  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Rich Blinne
  To: George Murphy
  Sent: Tuesday, March 06, 2007 10:58 PM
  Subject: Re: [asa] on "baconianism" & American evangelicals

  On Mar 6, 2007, at 6:24 PM, George Murphy wrote:

    I don't think Barth can be classified as anti-theoretical. Whether or not he's really "anti-system," it's doctrine in theology that corresponds to theory in science. (Cf. the 3d volume of McGrath's A Scientific Theology.) & Barth certainly wasn't anti-doctrine when he was writing the Church Dogmatics.

  What I was contrasting was not theory or doctrine per se but the inductive systemization of facts into theory. In the case of Hodge it was the systemization of Biblical facts into doctrine. One could argue like you did that Barth also did this despite himself. Or, you could also argue that Barth's doctrine of the church short-circuited this process and went straight to doctrine/theory without the prior inductive step. Of course, the reflection of the church would itself involve meditation on the facts of Scripture. Thus, my description of an anti-system system. No one can write thirteen volumes of completely disjointed "facts".

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Received on Wed Mar 7 12:23:44 2007

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