On Not Harmonizing

I’ve just wrapped up teaching the Synoptic Gospels part of my Gospels and Acts course. Going through the individual books, looking over proposed solutions to the Synoptic Problem, and seeing how the seemingly harmonious stories portray Jesus’ ministry in quite different lights, we are left with a few conclusion that are surprising to many of […]

On Reading the Bible

Barth finishes ch. 3 of the Dogmatics with a section on reading the Bible. As we have been noting through the review of Christian Smith’s work, reading the Bible is not as straightforward as one might guess. There is a historical sense to be had–or at least, to be approximated and approached. But articulating what […]

Then & There, Here & Now

A friend recently gave me the heads up on an article in the Harvard Theological Review by Paul E. Capetz entitled, “Theology and the Historical-Critical Study of the Bible” (HTR 104 (2011): 459-88). It is a lengthy engagement with three advocates of Theological Interpretation of Scripture: Brevard Childs, Christopher Seitz, and Dale Martin. Capetz writes […]

You Have to Read the Bible

Yesterday we started a review of Smith’s The Bible Made Impossible, today we return to Barth’s exposition of reading and applying the Bible in the church. Whereas Smith’s contention is that certain evangelical ways of thinking about the Bible make such a Bible, literally, impossible, Barth maintains that God himself has made communication with people […]

Does God Really Say?

Some of the most basic ideas are also the most difficult. Early on, many of us learned that when we hear the words of scripture we are hearing more than the words of people. We are hearing the word of God. Christianity depends on the idea that the God who created the world is also […]