Saturday, May 03, 2008

Watch your step!

One of the things that’s become increasingly clear in responding to Reppert’s critique of Calvinism is that our theological differences are symptomatic of a different underlying conception of what it means to be a Christian believer. It has less to do with Reformed distinctives than with a difference in theological method, of which our Reformed distinctives are—in this respect—a side-effect.

Reppert’s faith is one part revelation to nine parts speculation. A house of faith made of matchsticks.

This is, in large part, because Reppert has a very ambivalent attitude towards the Bible. On the one hand he can’t quite get along without it. At a minimum, he needs a reasonably accurate life of Christ. One or more of the four gospels must be close to the truth.

On the other hand, other parts of the Bible are a drag on his faith. He doesn’t believe certain parts of the Bible.

So, for him, the Bible is, by turns, friend and foe. He can’t dispense with Scripture entirely, but too much Scripture is hazardous to his faith. The incredible parts threaten to swamp the credible parts.

Speaking for myself, I’d find it unnerving, not to say a bit terrifying, to have such a honeycombed faith. Having to tiptoe over the cracked pavement of the Bible, lest I put just a tad too much weight on one square—only to watch it cave in beneath me. One false step and down he goes!

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