Presentation on theme: "CS 501 Houston Graduate School of Theology Introduction to Christian Spirituality, part 3."— Presentation transcript:
CS 501 Houston Graduate School of Theology Introduction to Christian Spirituality, part 3
The use and abuse of Scripture What does Brauch mean by the abuse of Scripture? Interpreting or applying the Bible in questionable or irresponsible ways. Are these abuses always intentional? No, they are often the results of allowing biases or preconceptions to control the reading of Scripture. This discipline is called hermeneutics This discipline is called hermeneutics.
The twin pillars Intentional Intentional – The highest view of Scripture is that which is most faithful to the intention of Scripture itself. Incarnational Incarnational – The view of Scripture which takes with utmost seriousness the fact that God’s final, ultimate form of revelation is the incarnation of Jesus Christ. God’s word in human vocabulary and human vocabulary bathed in the Word of God.
The word “word” The written word The Incarnate Word (Jn 1:14) The spoken word (Heb 1:1-4)
To avoid the abuse of the whole gospel Balance the personal and corporate nature of Scripture Study Scripture book by book and as a whole To avoid the abuse of selectivity Study all of the voices from Scripture on a subject Employ the “forest versus the trees” principle Look for redemptive movement within Scripture The abuses
To avoid the abuse of biblical balance Acknowledge the reality of multiple biblical perspectives Refuse to dictate in advance what Scripture reveals about God Allow for the discovery of deeper truths Practice humility Be careful not to rationalize or prioritize one sin over another Balance correct doctrinal confession with concrete ethical action—truth and grace, faith and action, doctrine and ethics, knowledge and praxis The abuses
To avoid the abuse of words Remember that revelation is within the confines of human language Recognize that “hearing” includes the possibility of understanding and misunderstanding Be attentive to the range of meanings in original and translated languages Take seriously the contexts in which words are created and used Use linguistic tools and resources The abuses
To avoid the abuse of literary/theological contexts Ask “What is its context?” Analyze the immediate and larger contexts Resist the temptation to bring preconceived notions to the text Ask what the audience would have heard or read Interpret text in light of the larger literary and theological argument The abuses
To avoid the abuse of historical/cultural contexts Take Scripture’s incarnational nature seriously Distinguish between what is relative and what transcends all contexts Ground discernment in biblical precedent The abuses
Why? There is still so much to discover through revealed truth. Perhaps there is much more truth “out there,” yet to be discovered throughout eternity.