Re: [asa] Pinnock on Climbing out of the Swamp (was Lamoureux, Concordism, and Inerrancy)

From: David Campbell <>
Date: Mon Mar 10 2008 - 18:55:15 EDT

To some extent, the question of what Jesus would have thought about
cosmology, evolution, etc. while on earth is reading present issues
into the past. I suspect that "Did Jesus think much about cosmology,
etc.?" would be answered "no." I suspect that a direct question on
such topics would have been aswered along the lines of Jn. 21:22.

>When John has Nathanael proclaim Jesus as Son of God and King of
Israel at the very beginning of his ministry he is either (a) giving
an historical account which blatantly contradicts Mark, where no one
except the demons & Peter - sort of - recognizes who Jesus is until
his death or (b) he is reading back into the history a post-Easter
knowledge of Jesus<

Given that the implications of Peter's declaration failed to really be
grasped by any of the disciples, including Peter, until after Jesus'
death, it doesn't seem impossible that Nathanael could have made a
similar statement. Probably in Nathanael's mind at the time the
implications would have been rather closer to the hopes of the
nationalists. John certainly sees significance to the statement in
light of post-Easter knowledge, but that doesn't make it utterly
impossible as a startled exclamation. As Jesus pointed out (Jn.
10:33-36), "son of God" was not entirely unknown as a concept, and
Luke lists Adam as the son of God in the genealogy. King of Israel is
what popular nationalistic messianic speculation wanted. The
designations are unusual, but not impossible, and special revelation
may play a role as well-giving words of greater significance than the
speaker realizes (as was the case for Peter's declaration). John the
Baptist had identified Jesus as much greater than himself, and Philip
introduced Jesus to Nathanael as the One foretold in all of Scripture,
so there were factors that could prompt a very high estimation at
first, which would be drastically reshaped by Jesus' failure to
conform to popular ideas of what the Messiah should be.

Thus, I don't think Nathanael's quote inherently contradicts the
picture in Mark, but I agree that Nathanael would not have said it
with anything like a post-Easter understanding, whereas John wrote it
with such an understanding.

Dr. David Campbell
425 Scientific Collections
University of Alabama
"I think of my happy condition, surrounded by acres of clams"
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Received on Mon Mar 10 18:56:35 2008

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