Intro to theo lecture

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Intro to theo lecture

  1. 1. Introduction to Theology An Invitation to Theology? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  2. 2. “Jesus said to him, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’” –Matthew 22:37 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  3. 3. Question Outline • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Who are you and why are you here? What is The Theology Program? What is theology? Who is a theologian? How do we do theology every day? What are the different categories of theology? What is the Theological Process? What is epistemology? What is postmodernism? What questions are postmoderns asking? What is the postmodern view of truth? What is the modern view of truth? What is the Christian view of truth? What truths are relative and what truths are objective? • • • • • • • • • • • • Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. What truths are essential for orthodoxy? How certain are you about your beliefs? What is the essential difference in Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and Protestantism? Why are there so many Protestant denominations? What are the different sources for truth? What are the benefits and deficiencies of each source? How do the different sources interact to form our theology? Does God still speak today? What is the Continuationist view of prophecy? What is the Hard Cessationist view of prophecy? What is the Soft Cessationist view of prophecy? How do we do theology in our emerging context?
  4. 4. Course Outline I. II. III. IV. V. VI. VII. VIII. IX. X. Introduction Defining Theology Categories of Theology Postmodern Epistemology Christian Epistemology Essentials of Theology Traditions of Christian Theology Sources of Theology Does God Still Speak Today? Unity and Diversity Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  5. 5. Introduction to Theology BIBLICAL THEOLOGY SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  6. 6. Question Who are you and why are you here? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  7. 7. Introduction to Theology module Who you are and why you are taking this course? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  8. 8. Introduction to Theology module Who are you and why are you taking this course? • Practical Pricilla: You are a person who Pricilla has never seen the practicality in deep theological study. You are here to see if we can change your mind. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  9. 9. Introduction to Theology module Who are you and why are you taking this course? 2. Scared Susan: Big words scare you. You Susan don’t really think that you are smart enough to be here. You are here this time, but you may not be here the next. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  10. 10. Introduction to Theology module Who are you and why are you taking this course? 3. Know-it-all Nick: You already know Nick everything. You are just here to see if we do… and to pick up where we leave off. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  11. 11. Introduction to Theology module Who are you and why are you taking this course? 4. Fundamental Fred: You are the GodFred ordained guardian of orthodoxy. You are here to sit, with arms crossed, and protect. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  12. 12. Introduction to Theology module Who are you and why are you taking this course? 5. Want-an-answer Will: You have a lot Will of questions. You are here not to do theology in community, but to write theology down with a pen and paper. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  13. 13. Introduction to Theology module Who are you and why are you taking this course? 6. Traditionalist Teri: You want to learn, Teri but your traditions and preconceived notions bind you. You are here to have your traditions confirmed to be true. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  14. 14. Introduction to the Theology Program Who are you and why are you taking this course? 7. Confrontational Carl: You are not a Carl believer in Christ or the Bible and have no intention of becoming one. You are here to argue. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  15. 15. Introduction to Theology module Who are you and why are you taking this course? 8. Struggling Sam: You are a believer in Sam Christ, but you have a lot of doubts and struggles. You have never had a safe place to express those doubts. You are here to see if this is the place. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  16. 16. Introduction to Theology module Who are you and why are you taking this course? 9. Curious Carla: You are not really sure Carla why you are here, but you’re excited to find out. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  17. 17. Introduction to Theology module We are all real people created by a real God, and we all have real struggles, real questions, and real convictions. We are glad that you are here! Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  18. 18. Question What is The Theology Program? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  19. 19. Introduction to Theology module The Introduction to Theology Module is an intense theological studies program, designed for busy people who may never go to seminary but who want deep theological training. While there are many great subjects, biblical and spiritual, that Christians can and need to study, our focus is on seven specific courses of systematic theology. Our desire is to teach people how to think by opening their minds to diverse views, learning from history, wrestling with difficult issues, and graciously engaging an increasingly relativistic and postmodern world. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  20. 20. Introduction to Theology module Mission: Renewing minds and changing lives by purposefully guiding people through a study of historic and biblical Christian theology. Goal: “Our goal is not so much to teach good theology, as important as that is, but to teach people to think.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  21. 21. Introduction to Theology module What makes Introduction to Theology Module different? 1. Intensity in studies 2. Irenic theology 3. Intentional program design 4. Comprehensive / Practical coverage 5. Doing theology in community (relevance) Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  22. 22. Intensity in Studies The Church must have an avenue of intense, interactive Christian education through a program which gives people an opportunity to learn at a level that other venues cannot provide. HOPE TRAINING CENTER endeavors to be this avenue. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  23. 23. Intensity in Studies Sermon Low Commitment Fellowship/ Sunday School Interactive Classroom High Commitment
  24. 24. Intensity in Studies Sermon Fellowship/ Sunday School Low Expectations Interactive Classroom High Expectations •Attendance •Assigned readings •Books •Papers •Case studies •Memorization of Scripture •Grades Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  25. 25. Intensity in Studies Fellowship/ Sunday School Sermon Devotional (Brings encouragement for the week) Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Interactive Classroom Foundational (Builds theology for a lifetime)
  26. 26. Intensity in Studies Sermon Fellowship/ Sunday School Short-term life change Interactive Classroom Long-term life change Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  27. 27. Intensity in Studies Sermon Fellowship/ Sunday School Exhortation Interactive Classroom Education Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  28. 28. Intensity in Studies Sermon Fellowship/ Sunday School Interactive Classroom The education program of the Church needs to include all of these in balance. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  29. 29. Irenic Theology Key Terms Irenic Theology: Polemic Theology: Apologetic Theology: Theology that is done peaceably, accurately representing all views, even when you oppose them. Theology that is done in a warlike manner inside the Church, speaking against those with whom there is disagreement. Theology that is done to defend the faith against those who oppose outside the church. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  30. 30. Irenic Theology Irenic Peace War Polemic Defense Apologetic
  31. 31. Intentional Program Design
  32. 32. Comprehensive Coverage In the courses, we will address all the relevant major issues, current and historic, of which we think people need to be aware. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  33. 33. Doing Theology in a Community We believe that truth is not found in Spiritilluminated individuals, but in a community of Spirit-illuminated individuals. Therefore, we believe that the Body of Christ, must come together to understand theology, clarifying it from many perspectives and differing experiences, and applying theology in the community. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  34. 34. Discussion Groups Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  35. 35. Defining Theology “What does it mean to ‘do’ theology?” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  36. 36. Question What is theology? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  37. 37. Traditions of Theology Epistemology Epistemology Denominations Eastern Orthodox Eastern Orthodox Pluralism Protestant Experience Cessationism Relativism PENTECOSTALI SM Truth Roman Catholic Roman Catholic Exclusivism Special Revelation Special Revelation Modernism Prophecy Protestant theology Postmodernism Cessationism
  38. 38. Defining Theology What is Theology? Write a one or two sentence definition of theology: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  39. 39. Defining Theology “The study or science “The study or science of God.” of God.” –Millard Erickson –Millard Erickson Christian Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2001), 22 Christian Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2001), 22 “The Science of God “The Science of God and of the relations and of the relations between God and between God and the universe.” the universe.” –A. H. Strong –A. H. Strong “Rational discussion “Rational discussion respecting the deity.” respecting the deity.” –Augustine –Augustine “Thinking about God “Thinking about God and expressing those and expressing those thoughts in some thoughts in some way.” way.” –Charles Ryrie –Charles Ryrie Basic Theology (Wheaton, IL: 1986), 99 Basic Theology (Wheaton, IL: 1986), Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  40. 40. Defining Theology “The science of God or of religion; the science which “The science of God or of religion; the science which treats of the existence, character, and attributes of treats of the existence, character, and attributes of God, his laws and government, the doctrines we are God, his laws and government, the doctrines we are to believe, and the duties we are to practice; divinity; to believe, and the duties we are to practice; divinity; (as more commonly understood) the knowledge (as more commonly understood) the knowledge derivable from the Scriptures, the systematic exhibition of derivable from the Scriptures, the systematic exhibition of revealed truth, the science of Christian faith and life.” revealed truth, the science of Christian faith and life.” —Webster’s Dictionary —Webster’s Dictionary Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  41. 41. Question Who is a theologian? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  42. 42. Defining Theology Who is a theologian? Anyone who has asked the ultimate questions of life: • Why am I here? • What is life? • What happens after death? • What is the difference between right and wrong? • Why is there something instead of nothing? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  43. 43. Defining Theology The question is not, “Who is a The question is not, “Who is a theologian?” but “What kind of theologian?” but “What kind of theologian am II going to be?” Are theologian am going to be?” Are you going to be a good theologian you going to be a good theologian or a bad theologian? This is a or a bad theologian? This is a more accurate question because, more accurate question because, as one writer put it, “not all as one writer put it, “not all theologies are equal.” theologies are equal.” –Source unknown –Source unknown Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  44. 44. Defining Theology “We live in what may be the most anti“We live in what may be the most antiintellectual period in the history of intellectual period in the history of Western civilization. .. .. We must have Western civilization. We must have passion—indeed hearts on fire for the passion—indeed hearts on fire for the things of God. But that passion must things of God. But that passion must resist with intensity the antiresist with intensity the antiintellectual spirit of the world.” intellectual spirit of the world.” —R. C. Sproul —R. C. Sproul “Burning Hearts Are Not Nourished by Empty Heads,” Christianity Today 26 (Sept. 3, 1982), 100 “Burning Hearts Are Not Nourished by Empty Heads,” Christianity Today 26 (Sept. 3, 1982), 100 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  45. 45. Defining Theology There are basically six arenas in which we can do theology: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Tabloid Theology Folk Theology Lay Theology Ministerial Theology Professional Theology Academic Theology Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  46. 46. Defining Theology Tabloid Folk Lay Ministerial Fundamental Academic
  47. 47. Defining Theology Tabloid Theologian: One who constructs his or her theology based upon naïve hearsay information that has no basis in fact and very little, if any, evidence to be believed. Many times people are Tabloid theologians because of the theology’s appearance of originality. As well, it can be “cutting edge” in many people’s minds. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  48. 48. Defining Theology What are some examples of Tabloid theology? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  49. 49. Defining Theology • Tabloid theology examples Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  50. 50. Defining Theology • • • • • • Hitchhiking angel Growing fire hose “I Saw Heaven” Statues with tears of blood Apparitions of Mary (what other examples can you give?) Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  51. 51. Defining Theology Folk Theologian: One who uncritically and unreflectively constructs his or her theology according to traditions and religious folklore. The Folk theologian is often very dogmatic about his or her beliefs. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  52. 52. Defining Theology What are some examples of Folk theology? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  53. 53. Defining Theology Folk theology examples: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  54. 54. Defining Theology Folk theology examples: • • • • • Occults; Espiritistas Ghosts Angels’ wings Good works salvation All people are good at heart Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  55. 55. Defining Theology Folk theology examples: • Amulets • Talismans • Witch Doctors • Divination • Ghosts • Animism • (give your own examples) Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  56. 56. Defining Theology Why do you think that it is so hard for Folk theologians to learn? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  57. 57. Defining Theology Lay Theologian: A layperson who constructs his or her theology and who, unlike the folk and tabloid theologian, is . . . (1) more reflective upon learned theological concepts (2) likely to formulate a system of beliefs which distinguishes between essential and nonessential doctrine (3) more critical of unfounded traditions (4) willing to use study tools Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  58. 58. Defining Theology Ministerial Theologian: A layperson who constructs his or her theology and who, unlike the lay theologian is . . . (1) educated in theological methodology (2) able to use study tools and resources at a more effective level (3) able to openly critique personal theology against competing models (4) intent on devoting more time to reflection so that theological integration can take place Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  59. 59. Defining Theology Fundamental Theologian: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. One who constructs his or her theology seriously and fundamentally. They usually. . . (1) are didactically purposed toward lay and pastoral theologians (2) conduct practical original research (3) critically evaluate common theological trends and folk theology.
  60. 60. Defining Theology Fundamental theologians are often accused of “quenching the Spirit.” Why do you think they receive this accusation? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  61. 61. • BECAUSE THEY WILL USUALLY ASK THE QUESTIONS: • Is that Biblical? • Where in the Bible can you find that? • Is it Theological? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  62. 62. Defining Theology Academic Theologian: A professional theologian who constructs his theology with an overly speculative and critical spirit. His dialogue can usually come only with other theologians. It is often called “Ivory Tower theology.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  63. 63. Defining Theology What are some examples of Academic theology? Why do you think someone would want to be an Academic theologian? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  64. 64. Defining Theology Skeptical Naïve Critical Gates permanently locked Sensational Gates wide open Tabloid Folk Lay Ministerial Fundamental Academic
  65. 65. Defining Theology Acceptable range Tabloid Folk Lay Ministerial Professional Academic
  66. 66. Defining Theology “Theology is for everyone. Indeed, “Theology is for everyone. Indeed, everyone needs to be a theologian. In everyone needs to be a theologian. In reality, everyone is a theologian—of one reality, everyone is a theologian—of one sort or another. And therein lies the sort or another. And therein lies the problem. There is nothing wrong with problem. There is nothing wrong with being an amateur theologian or a being an amateur theologian or a professional theologian, but there is professional theologian, but there is everything wrong with being an ignorant everything wrong with being an ignorant or sloppy theologian.” or sloppy theologian.” —Charles Ryrie —Charles Ryrie Basic Theology (Wheaton, IL: 1986), 9. Basic Theology (Wheaton, IL: 1986), 9. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  67. 67. Defining Theology How do we “do” theology every day? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  68. 68. Defining Theology How do we “do” theology every day? In other words, how does our theology influence our daily routine? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  69. 69. Defining Theology 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. When we think about God. When we share the Gospel. When we interpret the Bible. When we get sick. When we defend the faith. When we plan for the future. When we choose schooling for our children. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  70. 70. Defining Theology 8. When we vote. 9. When we attempt to deal with sin in our lives. 10. When we decide on who we marry. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  71. 71. Defining Theology What is theology? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  72. 72. Defining Theology credo ut intelligam “faith seeking understanding” This is aaLatin phrase coined by Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109) This is Latin phrase coined by Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109) meaning “faith seeking understanding.” This is one of the earliest meaning “faith seeking understanding.” This is one of the earliest definitions of theology. It starts with the assumption that we are definitions of theology. It starts with the assumption that we are believers and, as such, we are seeking to understand our beliefs better. believers and, as such, we are seeking to understand our beliefs better.
  73. 73. Discussion Groups Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  74. 74. Categories of Theology Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  75. 75. Question What are the different categories of theology? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  76. 76. Categories of Theology 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Systematic Biblical Historical Philosophical Creedal/Dogmatic Apologetic Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  77. 77. Categories of Theology Systematic Theology • Prolegomena: Literally means “things which are spoken beforehand.” Deals with the foundational issues of theology such as theological methodology, sources, and reasons for the study of theology. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  78. 78. Categories of Theology • • Bibliology: The study of the nature, transmission, canonization, and purpose of Scripture. Theology Proper: The study of God’s existence, nature, and attributes. Sometimes called “Trinitarianism.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  79. 79. Categories of Theology • • Christology: The study of the person and work of Christ. Pneumatology: The study of the person and work of the Holy Spirit. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  80. 80. Categories of Theology • • • Anthropology: The study of the purpose and nature of humanity, both in its pre-fall and post-fall state. Hamartiology: The study of the nature, origin, and effects of sin on all creation. Angelology: The study of the nature and works of demons and angels. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  81. 81. Categories of Theology • • • Soteriology: The study of salvation. Ecclesiology: The study of the nature of the Church. Eschatology: The study of the end times. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  82. 82. Categories of Theology Systematic Biblical • Restricts the formulation of theology only to the Scripture. • Formulates theology from all sources of theology, including Scripture. • Sometimes will examine the individual parts of Scripture in order to formulate a particular theology that is restricted to a certain time period and a particular people (e.g., Pre-mosaic theology). • Correlates the entirety of Scripture to formulate a general theology for all time and for all people. • Sometimes examines the theology of a certain author (e.g.,, John or Paul). • Correlates information on a doctrine by examining the theology of all the authors.
  83. 83. Categories of Theology Systematic Historical • Restricts the formulation of theology only to the history of the Church. • Formulates theology from all sources of theology. • Sometimes will examine the individual periods of Church history in order to formulate a particular theology that is restricted to a certain time period (e.g.,, Patristic, Medieval, Reformation). • Correlates the all of Church history to formulate a general theology for all time and for all people.
  84. 84. Categories of Theology Systematic Philosophical • Restricts the formulation of theology only to that which can be ascertained by reason. • Formulates theology from all sources of theology. • Sometimes will examine the individual periods of philosophical history in order to formulate a particular theology that is restricted to a certain time period (e.g.,, enlightenment, modern, postmodern). • Correlates the all of philosophical history to formulate a general theology for all time and for all people.
  85. 85. Categories of Theology Creedal Systematic • Restricts the formulation of • Formulates theology from all sources of theology theology only to that of a including the creedal particular religious institution statement of many or denomination. institutions and denominations.
  86. 86. Categories of Theology Apologetic • Formulates theology for the purpose of explaining and defending the faith to those outside the faith. Systematic • Formulates theology for the purpose of creating a comprehensive and coherent understanding of various doctrines.
  87. 87. Question What is the Theological Process? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  88. 88. Truth Extract timeless principles 2 Theological Statement “What is the timeless truth taught?” . “What did it mean then?” • • • • Historical interpretation Grammatical interpretation Contextual interpretation Literary Interpretation Ancient Audience Ancient Audience 1 Exegetical Statement Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time bound Audience Contextualize Contextualize Principles for today Principles for today Analogy of Scripture . 3 Homiletical Statement . “How does it apply to us?”
  89. 89. Systematic Theology Ancient Audience Ancient Audience Biblical Hermeneutics Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience Application
  90. 90. Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience
  91. 91. Liberal Theology Liberal Theology Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience
  92. 92. ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience
  93. 93. Hypocritical Folk Theology Hypocritical Folk Theology ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience
  94. 94. Ancient Audience Ancient Audience Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  95. 95. Subjective Theology Subjective Theology Ancient Audience Ancient Audience Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  96. 96. Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  97. 97. Irrelevant Theology Irrelevant Theology Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  98. 98. ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  99. 99. ? Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience Ancient Audience Ancient Audience Contemporary Audience Folk Theology Folk Theology ?
  100. 100. ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience
  101. 101. Short-circuit Theology Short-circuit Theology ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience
  102. 102. ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  103. 103. Eisegetical Theology Eisegetical Theology ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  104. 104. ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  105. 105. Exegetical Theology Exegetical Theology ? Ancient Audience Ancient Audience ? Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience ?
  106. 106. • • • • Historical interpretation Grammatical interpretation Contextual interpretation Literary Interpretation Ancient Audience Ancient Audience 1. Exegetical Statement “What did it mean then?” Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience Contextualize Contextualize Principles for today Principles for today Analogy of Scripture Theology 3. Homiletical Statement “How does it apply to us?”
  107. 107. Categories of Theology Scripture Biblical Theology Historical Theology Philosophical Theology Systematic Theology Apologetic Theology Creedal/Dogmatic Theology
  108. 108. Postmodern Epistemology Understanding Our Changing Culture Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  109. 109. Postmodern Epistemology What is Epistemology? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  110. 110. Postmodern Epistemology “The theory or science “The theory or science of the method or of the method or grounds of grounds of knowledge.” knowledge.” —Webster’s Dictionary —Webster’s Dictionary Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  111. 111. Postmodern Epistemology “The branch of philosophy “The branch of philosophy that is concerned with the that is concerned with the theory of knowledge. It is theory of knowledge. It is an inquiry into the nature an inquiry into the nature and source of knowledge, and source of knowledge, the bounds of knowledge, the bounds of knowledge, and the justification of and the justification of claims to knowledge.” claims to knowledge.” —Paul Feinberg —Paul Feinberg Walter A. Elwell ed., “Epistemology” in The Evangelical Dictionary of Theology Walter A. Elwell ed., “Epistemology” in The Evangelical Dictionary of Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2001), 382. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2001), 382. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  112. 112. Postmodern Epistemology Key Terms Relativism: Subjectivism: Skepticism: Perspectivism: Pragmatism: Objectivism: The belief that all truth is relative, being determined by some group. The belief that all truth is subjective, being defined by the perspective of the individual. The belief that truth cannot be known with certainty. The belief that truth is found in the combined perspectives of many. The belief that truth is ultimately defined by that which works to accomplish the best outcome. “The end justifies the means.” The belief that truth is an objective reality that exist whether someone believes it or not. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  113. 113. Postmodern Epistemology Which best describes our culture today? 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Relativism Subjectivism Skepticism Perspectivalism Pragmatism Objectivism Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  114. 114. Postmodern Epistemology Which is true? 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Relativism Subjectivism Skepticism Perspectivalism Pragmatism Objectivism Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  115. 115. Question What is Postmodernism? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  116. 116. Postmodern Epistemology “Christian’s today cannot work with the “Christian’s today cannot work with the same assumptions that we did just 20 same assumptions that we did just 20 years ago. At that time, people would years ago. At that time, people would join you in your search for absolute join you in your search for absolute truth. It is different now. Today, before truth. It is different now. Today, before we begin to lead people to the truth of we begin to lead people to the truth of Jesus Christ, we may have to lead them Jesus Christ, we may have to lead them to the truth of truth. Common ground to the truth of truth. Common ground must be created before the Gospel can be must be created before the Gospel can be proclaimed” proclaimed” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  117. 117. Postmodern Epistemology “Apologetically, the question which arises in “Apologetically, the question which arises in the postmodern context is the following. How the postmodern context is the following. How can Christianity’s claims to truth be taken can Christianity’s claims to truth be taken seriously, when there are so many rival seriously, when there are so many rival alternatives, and when ‘truth’ itself has alternatives, and when ‘truth’ itself has become a devalued notion? No-one can lay become a devalued notion? No-one can lay claim to possession of truth. It is all a claim to possession of truth. It is all a question of perspective. The conclusion of question of perspective. The conclusion of this line of thought is as simple as it is this line of thought is as simple as it is devastating: ‘the truth is that there is no devastating: ‘the truth is that there is no truth” truth” –Alister McGrath –Alister McGrath A Passion for Truth (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 1996), 188 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. for Truth (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 1996), 188 A Passion
  118. 118. Postmodern Epistemology A Conversation Between Protagoras and Socrates (4th Century B.C.) Protagoras: Truth is relative. It is only a matter of opinion. Socrates: You mean that truth is mere subjective opinion? Protagoras: Exactly. What is true for you is true for you, and what is true for me is true for me. Truth is subjective. Socrates: Do you really mean that? That my opinion is true by virtue of its being my opinion? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  119. 119. Postmodern Epistemology Protagoras: Indeed I do. Socrates: My opinion is: Truth is absolute, not opinion, and that you, Mr. Protagoras, are absolutely in error. Since this is my opinion, you must grant that it is true according to your philosophy. Protagoras: You are quite correct, Socrates. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  120. 120. Postmodern Epistemology Self-defeating Statements “I cannot speak a word in English.” “My wife has never been married.” “We cannot know anything about God.” “There is no such thing as truth.” “Truth cannot be known with certainty.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  121. 121. Postmodern Epistemology A short history of western civilization Three periods: 1. Premodern (400-1600 A.D.) 2. Modern (1600-1900 A.D.) 3. Postmodern (1960-present) Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  122. 122. Postmodern Epistemology Premodern 400 Modern 1600 Postmodern 1960
  123. 123. Postmodern Epistemology Back Stage of Truth Stage of Truth Front
  124. 124. Postmodern Epistemology Postmodern Postmodern Modern Modern Transition 1960-?
  125. 125. Postmodern Epistemology Modern Generation – Preboomers – Boomers 53% 53% Postmodern Generation – Busters (Gen X) – Bridgers (Gen Y) Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. 57% 57%
  126. 126. Postmodern Epistemology Modernism • • • • • • • • Intellectual Reason Optimism Hope for the future Objectivism Exclusivism Science method Man is evolving Postmodernism • • • • • • • • Anti-intellectual Feeling Pessimism Despair for the present Subjectivism/relativism Pluralism/inclusivism Distrust in science Man is devolving
  127. 127. Postmodern Epistemology The Ideal Modern Man: Mr. Spock • Spock is always logical and objective. • Never acts upon feeling, because that would be “illogical.” “Physical laws simply cannot be ignored. Existence cannot be without them.” “Pain is a thing of the mind. The mind can be controlled.”
  128. 128. Postmodern Epistemology The Ideal Modern Man Mocked: Data • • Data is the “perfect” modern human. Despite his “perfection,” Data . . . 1. Wants to be human. 2. Rebels against logic. 3. Attempts to develop emotions and feelings
  129. 129. Postmodern Epistemology • Premodern: “There’s balls and Premodern there’s strikes, and I call them as they are.” • Modern: “There’s balls and Modern there’s strikes, and I call them as I see them.” • Postmodern: “They ain’t Postmodern nothing ‘til I call ‘em.”
  130. 130. Postmodern Epistemology “In Postmodernism, there is no “In Postmodernism, there is no objective, universal truth; there is objective, universal truth; there is only the perspective of the group. .. .. .. only the perspective of the group. In postmodernism, all viewpoints, all In postmodernism, all viewpoints, all lifestyles, all beliefs and behaviors lifestyles, all beliefs and behaviors are regarded as equally valid. .. .. .. are regarded as equally valid. Tolerance has become so important Tolerance has become so important that no exception is tolerated.” that no exception is tolerated.” –Charles Colson –Charles Colson How Now Shall We Live? (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale, 1999), 23 How Now Shall We Live? (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale, 1999), 23 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  131. 131. Christian Epistemology Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  132. 132. Question What questions are postmoderns asking? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  133. 133. Christian Epistemology Modernist Objections to Christianity 1. What about all the contradictions? 2. God is just a crutch. Religion was invented by man. 3. Jesus was just a man. 4. The Bible we have today is not the same as when it was written 2000 years ago. 5. I don’t believe in what I can’t see. 6. Evolution has proven Christianity to be wrong. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  134. 134. Christian Epistemology 7. The Bible is a myth full of fairy tales. 8. How did Noah get all of the animals on the Ark? 9. There are no such thing as miracles. 10. Do you really believe in the story of Adam and Eve? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  135. 135. Christian Epistemology Postmodernist Objections to Christianity 1. If God exists, why is there evil? 2. The Inquisition and the Crusades show that Christianity is oppressive. 3. Christianity is a way to God but not the only way. 4. Christianity is arrogant and exclusive. 5. How do you know that your Bible is better than other religious writings? 6. Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  136. 136. Christian Epistemology 7. What about those who have never heard? 8. The church is full of hypocrites. 9. Why would God send anyone to Hell? 10. The God of the OT is cruel, partial, and unjust. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  137. 137. Christian Epistemology Modernist Facts Rationality Evidence Postmodernis t Fairness Relationships Emotion Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  138. 138. Question What is the modern view of truth? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  139. 139. Christian Epistemology Correspondence view of truth: (1) Truth is an objective reality that exists whether someone believes it or not, (2) and that objective reality is grounded in nature. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  140. 140. Christian Epistemology True statements are those which correspond to that objective reality. False statements are those which do not correspond to that objective reality. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  141. 141. Christian Epistemology Law of non-contradiction applies   A ≠ -A at the same time and in the same relationship. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  142. 142. Epistemology Key Motto Key Motto “Man can and will know all truth.” “Man can and will know all truth.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  143. 143. Question What is the postmodern view of truth? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  144. 144. Christian Epistemology Relative view of truth: (1) Truth is a perspective reality that exists in the perspective of the individual or group, (2) and that perspective reality is grounded in time. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  145. 145. Christian Epistemology Law of non-contradiction does not apply A = -A at the same time and in the same relationship. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  146. 146. Christian Epistemology Key Motto Key Motto “The truth cannot be known.” “The truth cannot be known.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  147. 147. Christian Epistemology Religious Spin on Postmodern Epistemology Universalism: The belief that all people, good or bad, will eventually make it to Heaven. Pluralism: The belief that there are many ways to God that are equally valid. Syncretism: The assimilation of differing beliefs and practices. Inclusivism: The belief that salvation is only through Christ, but Christ may be revealed in other religions. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  148. 148. Christian Epistemology Vatican II (1962-1965) and inclusivism “But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the creator. In the first place among these there are the Moslems, whom professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful god, who on the last day will judge mankind. Those also can attain salvation who through no fault of their own do not know the gospel of Christ or his church, yet sincerely seek god and, moved by grace, strive by their deeds to do his will as it is known to them through the dictates of conscience.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  149. 149. Question What is the Christian view truth? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  150. 150. Christian Epistemology Correspondence view of truth: (1) Truth is an objective reality that exists whether someone believes it or not, (2) and that objective reality is grounded in an eternal God. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  151. 151. Christian Epistemology The law of non-contradiction is a foundational necessity to all truth. God cannot even violate this principle since it is a logical impossibility. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  152. 152. Christian Epistemology Key Motto Key Motto “The secret things belong to the Lord “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our sons forever, that belong to us and to our sons forever, that we may observe all the words of this law” we may observe all the words of this law” (Deut. 29:29). (Deut. 29:29). Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  153. 153. Christian Epistemology Christian truth must have a balance between the “things revealed” and mystery (“secret things”). Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  154. 154. Christian Epistemology Apophadic Theology: Lit. “negative theology.” Apophadic Theology emphasizes mystery. Often called the “way of negation” (via negativa) or “negative theology,” apophadic theology sees God, and much of theology, as beyond our understanding and, therefore, beyond defining through positive assertations. Finite people cannot say what the infinite God is but only what He is not. God is “uncreated,” “immutable,” “infinite,” “immortal.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  155. 155. Christian Epistemology Cataphatic Theology: Lit. “affirmative theology.” Cataphatic Theology emphasizes revelation. Often called “positive theology,” cataphatic theology seeks to understand God in positive terms, understanding that God communicates to us through language and concepts that are analogous to who and what He truly is (“analogy of language”). Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  156. 156. Christian Epistemology Cataphatic Theology Apophatic Theology “things revealed” “secret things” Modernism West Rationalists Roman Catholic/Protestants Postmodernism East Mystics Eastern Orthodox Responsible theology
  157. 157. Christian Epistemology Objectivism Cataphatic Theology Perspicuity Prov. 23:23 Apophatic Theology Soft Skepticism Perspectivism Prov. 8:5 Prov. 12:15
  158. 158. Christian Epistemology Objectivism Prov. 23:23 Perspicuity “You who are naive, “You who are naive, discern wisdom! discern wisdom! And you fools, And you fools, understand understand discernment!” discernment!” Cataphatic Theology Apophatic Theology Soft Skepticism Perspectivism Prov. 8:5 Prov. 12:15 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  159. 159. Christian Epistemology Objectivism Prov. 23:23 ““The way of aa fool is The way of fool is Perspicuity Cataphatic Theology right in his own right in his own opinion, but the one who opinion, but the one who listens to advice is listens to advice is Apophatic wise.” wise.” Theology Soft Skepticism Perspectivism Prov. 8:5 Prov. 12:15 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  160. 160. Christian Epistemology Objectivism Prov. 23:23 Cataphatic Theology Perspicuity “Acquire truth “Acquire truth and do not sell it .. and do not sell it .. .” .” Apophatic Theology Soft Skepticism Perspectivism Prov. 8:5 Prov. 12:15 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  161. 161. Defining Essentials and Non-essentials Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  162. 162. Question What truths are relative and what truths are objective? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  163. 163. Essentials and Non-Essentials Discussion of paper “Representing Christ to a Postmodern World” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  164. 164. Essentials and Non-essentials Quadrant of Objectivity Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  165. 165. True Relativity True Objectivity
  166. 166. True Relativity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Home Home schooling schooling Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. True Objectivity
  167. 167. True Relativity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Home Home schooling schooling Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Best kind of Best kind of food food Coke or Coke or Pepsi Pepsi Autonomous Autonomous Relativity Relativity Church Church music music Temperature Temperature of aa room (hot of room (hot or cold) or cold) Best song Best song Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. True Objectivity
  168. 168. True Relativity True Objectivity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Home Home schooling schooling Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Best kind of Best kind of food food Coke or Coke or Pepsi Pepsi Non-Essential Non-Essential Objectivity Objectivity Autonomous Autonomous Relativity Relativity Church Church music music Temperature Temperature of aa room (hot of room (hot or cold) or cold) Views of Views of Predestinatio Predestinatio nn Date of Date of Christ’s Christ’s coming coming Best song Best song Young Young earth/Old earth/Old earth earth Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Canon of Canon of Scripture Scripture Continuation Continuation of tongues of tongues
  169. 169. True Relativity True Objectivity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Essential Essential Objectivity Objectivity Home Home schooling schooling Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Best kind of Best kind of food food Coke or Coke or Pepsi Pepsi Non-Essential Non-Essential Objectivity Objectivity Autonomous Autonomous Relativity Relativity Church Church music music Temperature Temperature of aa room (hot of room (hot or cold) or cold) Views of Views of Predestinatio Predestinatio nn Date of Date of Christ’s Christ’s coming coming Best song Best song Young Young earth/Old earth/Old earth earth Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Canon of Canon of Scripture Scripture Continuation Continuation of tongues of tongues
  170. 170. True Relativity True Objectivity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies Existence of Existence of God God Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Essential Essential Objectivity Objectivity Home Home schooling schooling Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Best kind of Best kind of food food Coke or Coke or Pepsi Pepsi Non-Essential Non-Essential Objectivity Objectivity Autonomous Autonomous Relativity Relativity Church Church music music Temperature Temperature of aa room (hot of room (hot or cold) or cold) Views of Views of Predestinatio Predestinatio nn Date of Date of Christ’s Christ’s coming coming Best song Best song Young Young earth/Old earth/Old earth earth Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Canon of Canon of Scripture Scripture Continuation Continuation of tongues of tongues
  171. 171. True Relativity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies True Objectivity Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Essential Essential Objectivity Objectivity Home Home schooling schooling Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Best kind of Best kind of food food Coke or Coke or Pepsi Pepsi Temperature Temperature of aa room (hot of room (hot or cold) or cold) Views of Views of Predestinatio Predestinatio nn Date of Date of Christ’s Christ’s coming coming Non-Essential Non-Essential Objectivity Objectivity Autonomous Autonomous Relativity Relativity Church Church music music Existence of Existence of God God Christ’s Christ’s deity deity Best song Best song Young Young earth/Old earth/Old earth earth Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Canon of Canon of Scripture Scripture Continuation Continuation of tongues of tongues
  172. 172. True Relativity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies True Objectivity Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Essential Essential Objectivity Objectivity Home Home schooling schooling Faith Faith alone alone Best kind of Best kind of food food Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Coke or Coke or Pepsi Pepsi Date of Date of Christ’s Christ’s coming coming Temperature Temperature of aa room (hot of room (hot or cold) or cold) Views of Views of Predestinatio Predestinatio nn Non-Essential Non-Essential Objectivity Objectivity Autonomous Autonomous Relativity Relativity Church Church music music Existence of Existence of God God Christ’s Christ’s deity deity Best song Best song Young Young earth/Old earth/Old earth earth Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Canon of Canon of Scripture Scripture Continuation Continuation of tongues of tongues
  173. 173. True Relativity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies True Objectivity Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Essential Essential Objectivity Objectivity Home Home schooling schooling Faith Faith alone alone Best kind of Best kind of food food Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Coke or Coke or Pepsi Pepsi Date of Date of Christ’s Christ’s coming coming Temperature Temperature of aa room (hot of room (hot or cold) or cold) Death, Death, burial, and burial, and resurrection resurrection of Christ of Christ Views of Views of Predestinatio Predestinatio nn Non-Essential Non-Essential Objectivity Objectivity Autonomous Autonomous Relativity Relativity Church Church music music Existence of Existence of God God Christ’s Christ’s deity deity Best song Best song Young Young earth/Old earth/Old earth earth Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Canon of Canon of Scripture Scripture Continuation Continuation of tongues of tongues
  174. 174. True Relativity Drinking a Drinking a glass of glass of wine/beer wine/beer Going to Going to the the movies movies True Objectivity Situational Situational Relativity Relativity Wearing Wearing aa head head covering covering Essential Essential Objectivity Objectivity Home Home schooling schooling Faith Faith alone alone Best kind of Best kind of food food Eating Eating meat meat sacrificed sacrificed to idols to idols Coke or Coke or Pepsi Pepsi Date of Date of Christ’s Christ’s coming coming Temperature Temperature of aa room (hot of room (hot or cold) or cold) Death, Death, burial, and burial, and resurrection resurrection of Christ of Christ The The atonemen atonemen tt Views of Views of Predestinatio Predestinatio nn Non-Essential Non-Essential Objectivity Objectivity Autonomous Autonomous Relativity Relativity Church Church music music Existence of Existence of God God Christ’s Christ’s deity deity Best song Best song Young Young earth/Old earth/Old earth earth Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Canon of Canon of Scripture Scripture Continuation Continuation of tongues of tongues
  175. 175. Essentials and Non-Essentials Where would you place these on the quadrant? 1. Belief in the doctrine of the Trinity? Why? 2. Smoking? Why? 3. Eating healthy and exercising? Why? 4. Getting intoxicated? Why? 5. Having your mind altered by antidepressants? Why? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  176. 176. Question What truths are essential for orthodoxy? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  177. 177. Essentials and Non-essentials Concentric Circle of Importance Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  178. 178. Pure Speculation Not Important Important, but Not Essential Essential for Orthodoxy Essential for Salvation
  179. 179. Essentials and Non-essentials “For the Christian, beliefs “For the Christian, beliefs matter, but not all beliefs matter, but not all beliefs matter equally .” matter equally .” –Roger Olsen –Roger Olsen Mosaic of Christian Beliefs (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 2002), 33 Mosaic of Christian Beliefs (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 2002), 33 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  180. 180. Question How certain are you about your beliefs? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  181. 181. Essentials and Non-essentials “There are those dogmatic Christians “There are those dogmatic Christians who seem to overdefine Christianity who seem to overdefine Christianity such that being authentically such that being authentically Christian includes (for them) firm Christian includes (for them) firm adherence to a detailed set of adherence to a detailed set of extrabiblical beliefs, some of which extrabiblical beliefs, some of which are quite outside the Great Tradition are quite outside the Great Tradition itself.” itself.” –Roger Olsen –Roger Olsen Mosaic of Christian Beliefs (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 2002), 33 Mosaic of Christian Beliefs (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 2002), 33 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  182. 182. Essentials and non-essentials “Certain” (Webster’s) – Definite; fixed. – Sure to come or happen; inevitable. – Established beyond doubt or question; indisputable. – Capable of being relied on; dependable. – Having or showing confidence; assured. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  183. 183. The Existence of God Types of Certainty 1.Mathematical certainty (scientific method) 2.Empirical certainty (weight of evidences) 3.Logical certainty (what is reasonable) 4.Moral certainty (what is demanded) Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  184. 184. Essentials and Non-essentials Chart of Certainty Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  185. 185. Essentials and non-essentials Chart of Certainty I Do not believe I believe 1 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 91 0 0 – +
  186. 186. Essentials and non-essentials How certain are you that . . . 1. There is a God? 2. That Christ rose from the grave? 3. That God loves you? 4. That Christ is going to come and Rapture the Church before the Great Tribulaton? 5. That Christ is coming back to reign on the earth for a thousand years? 6. That Christ is coming back? 7. That God wants you to trust that He will protect you from all physical harm? 8. That God wants you to trust that He will protect you from all emotional harm? 9. That God wants you to trust in Him in every circumstance? 10. That the Bible does not have any historical errors? 11. That Adam and Eve were real people? 12. That there was really a snake in the garden? 13. That God created the earth in seven literal days? 14. The God created the earth? 15. That Christ paid for the sins of all mankind? 16. That Christ died for you? 17. That the Apocrypha (15 books in the Roman Catholic Bible) should not be included in Scripture? 18. That the book of 3 John should be included in Scripture? 19. That the book of Genesis should be included in Scripture? 20. That the gift of tongues ceased in the first century? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  187. 187. Essentials and Non-essentials “When you overstate, readers will be “When you overstate, readers will be instantly on guard and everything that instantly on guard and everything that has preceded your overstatement as well as has preceded your overstatement as well as everything that follows it will be suspect in everything that follows it will be suspect in their minds because they have lost their minds because they have lost confidence in your judgment or your poise. confidence in your judgment or your poise. Overstatement is one of the common faults. Overstatement is one of the common faults. A single overstatement, wherever or however A single overstatement, wherever or however it occurs, diminishes the whole, and a it occurs, diminishes the whole, and a single carefree superlative has the power to single carefree superlative has the power to destroy, for readers, the object of your destroy, for readers, the object of your enthusiasm.” enthusiasm.” –Strunk and White –Strunk and White Elements of Style, (Needham Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon), 7. Elements of Style, (Needham Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon), 7. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  188. 188. Essentials and Non-Essentials “In essentials unity, in “In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, non-essentials liberty, in all things charity.” in all things charity.” –Rupertus Meldenius –Rupertus Meldenius Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  189. 189. Essentials and Non-essentials Guiding Principles and Application: Application 1. Don’t divide over non-essentials no matter how convicted you are about their truth. 2. Never compromise the essentials no matter what the consequence. 3. There is no shame in being less certain about some things than others. The Bible does not teach all things with the same clarity. 4. Showing honest uncertainty about difficult issues makes your witness more authentic and powerful to a postmodern world. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  190. 190. Traditions in Christian Theology Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  191. 191. Question What is the essential difference in Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and Protestantism? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  192. 192. Traditions in Theology Traditions in Christian Theology 1. Roman Catholic 2. Eastern Orthodox 3. Protestant Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  193. 193. Traditions in Theology Protestant Roman Catholic Orthodox 349 million 943 million 211 million Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  194. 194. Question What is the Protestant view of Church history? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  195. 195. Protestant View of Ecclesiastical History Formulation Gospel 100 AD 500 Corruption Loss of Gospel Restoration Protestant Church 1054 1200 Greek Orthodox 1500 Roman Catholic
  196. 196. Traditions in Theology “Christianity stands or “Christianity stands or falls upon the doctrine falls upon the doctrine of justification.” of justification.” –Martin Luther –Martin Luther “Justification is the “Justification is the hinge upon which true hinge upon which true Christianity stands.” Christianity stands.” –John Calvin –John Calvin Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  197. 197. Question What is the Roman Catholic view of Church history? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  198. 198. Roman Catholic View of Ecclesiastical History Formulation Church 100 AD 500 Establishing Corruption of Morals Restoration Roman Catholicism 1054 1200 Greek Orthodox 1500 Protestants
  199. 199. Five Bishoprics of the Early Church Rome Constantinople Antioch Jerusalem Alexandria
  200. 200. Five Bishoprics of the Early Church Rome Constantinople Antioch Jerusalem Alexandria
  201. 201. Rome Constantinople Antioch Invasion of Islam Invasion of Islam 612 612 Jerusalem Alexandria
  202. 202. Fight for Supremacy Fight for Supremacy Split Split 1054 1054 Catholic Rome Catholic Filioque Filioque Constantinople Eastern Orthodox Eastern Orthodox
  203. 203. Rome Invasion of Islam Invasion of Islam 1453 1453 Constantinople
  204. 204. Rome
  205. 205. Rome Eastern Church moves north. Eastern Church moves north. Russian Orthodoxy becomes primary Russian Orthodoxy becomes primary Orthodox Church. Orthodox Church.
  206. 206. Question What is the Eastern Orthodox view of Church history? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  207. 207. Eastern Orthodox View of Ecclesiastical History Formulation Church 100 AD Disruption Purification East 500 West Eastern Orthodox 1500 1200 Roman Catholics Protestants
  208. 208. Question Why are there so many Protestant denominations? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  209. 209. Traditions in Theology Sub-traditions: Sub-traditions – – – – – – – Reformed Arminian Liberal Fundamental Charismatic Evangelical Postmodernist Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  210. 210. Brief History of the Protestant Movement Liberal Tradition Reformed Tradition s an d s s ri an nist yte me sts r i er i th alv resb efo apt Lu C P R B Charismatic Tradition Fundamentalist Tradition ts t tis hris s ap ts ns ll B of C stal es is a i n od ley -w rch teco are Arminian Tradition eth es ree hu en az M W F C P N 1500 1700 1900 Evangelical Tradition Postmodern Tradition 2000
  211. 211. Sources of Theology “Where do we go for truth?” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  212. 212. Question What are the different sources of truth? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  213. 213. Sources of Theology John Wesley’s Quadrilateral Tradition Scripture Reason Experience Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  214. 214. Sources of Theology 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Tradition Reason Experience General Revelation Emotions Special Revelation (Scripture) Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  215. 215. Sources of Theology
  216. 216. Sources of Theology 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Tradition Reason Experience Emotions General Revelation Special Revelation (Scripture) Stage of Truth Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Back Front
  217. 217. Roman Catholic Back Experience General Revelation Reason Tradition Scripture Front
  218. 218. Eastern Orthodox Stage of Truth Back General Revelation Experience Tradition Scripture Front Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  219. 219. Protestant Reformation Stage of Truth Back Experience General Revelation Tradition Reason Scripture Front
  220. 220. Liberal Stage of Truth Back General Revelation Emotions Experience Reason Front
  221. 221. Charismatic Stage of Truth Back Emotions Experience Special Revelation Front
  222. 222. Fundamentalist Stage of Truth Back General Revelation Scripture Front
  223. 223. Postmodern Stage of Truth Back Front
  224. 224. Question What are the benefits and deficiencies of each source? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  225. 225. Sources of Theology Tradition: Religious information that has been handed down to us from various sources. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  226. 226. Sources of Theology Examples: Benefits: Deficiencies: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  227. 227. Sources of Theology “Tradition is the living faith of “Tradition is the living faith of those now dead. Traditionalism is those now dead. Traditionalism is the dead faith of those now living.” the dead faith of those now living.” –Jarislav Pelikan –Jarislav Pelikan Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  228. 228. Sources of Theology Reason: Information that comes through the human mind’s capacity for logical, rational, and analytic thought. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  229. 229. Sources of Theology Examples: Benefits: Deficiencies: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  230. 230. Sources of Theology “All truth is given by revelation, “All truth is given by revelation, either general or special, and it must either general or special, and it must be received by reason. Reason is the be received by reason. Reason is the God-given means for discovering the God-given means for discovering the truth that God discloses, whether in truth that God discloses, whether in his world or his Word. While God his world or his Word. While God wants to reach the heart with truth, wants to reach the heart with truth, he does not bypass the mind.” he does not bypass the mind.” –Jonathan Edwards –Jonathan Edwards Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  231. 231. Sources of Theology “The truth of the Christian “The truth of the Christian faith surpasses the capacity faith surpasses the capacity of reason.” of reason.” –Thomas Aquinas –Thomas Aquinas Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  232. 232. Sources of Theology credo quia absurdum “I believe because it is absurd” This Latin phrase coined by Tertullian (150-225) evidences some of the This Latin phrase coined by Tertullian (150-225) evidences some of the early Church’s disdain for the Greek philosophers’ reliance upon reason early Church’s disdain for the Greek philosophers’ reliance upon reason for truth. He said, “What does Athens have to do with Jerusalem, or the for truth. He said, “What does Athens have to do with Jerusalem, or the academy with the Church?” He sought to return the element of mystery academy with the Church?” He sought to return the element of mystery to the Christian faith. to the Christian faith.
  233. 233. Sources of Theology Experience: Information that comes through direct encounter, participation, or observation. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  234. 234. Sources of Theology Examples: Benefits: Deficiencies: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  235. 235. Sources of Theology Emotions: Information that comes through subjectively experienced psychological feelings. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  236. 236. Sources of Theology Examples: Benefits: Deficiencies: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  237. 237. Sources of Theology sensus divinitatus “Sense of the divine” The sensus divinitatus is the inward persuasion all people have that directs The sensus divinitatus is the inward persuasion all people have that directs them to aabelief in God and aapropensity to worship. While the sensus them to belief in God and propensity to worship. While the sensus divinitatas can contribute to and shape our theology (natural theology), divinitatas can contribute to and shape our theology (natural theology), the information is insufficient to bring aaperson into aaright relationship the information is insufficient to bring person into right relationship with God. with God.
  238. 238. Sources of Theology General Revelation: Revelation about God given through the created order (Ps. 19:1–6 ; Rom. 1:18–20; 2:14–15). Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  239. 239. Sources of Theology Examples: Benefits: Deficiencies: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  240. 240. Sources of Theology Special Revelation: Revelation given by God’s supernatural intervention in history through (1) miraculous events, (2) divine speech, and (3) visible manifestations. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  241. 241. Sources of Theology Examples: Benefits: Deficiencies: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  242. 242. Sources of Theology norma normans sed non normata “A norm which norms but is not normed” This is aaLatin phrase of the Protestant Reformation that stresses the This is Latin phrase of the Protestant Reformation that stresses the importance of Scripture above all other sources of theology. The importance of Scripture above all other sources of theology. The Scripture, according to the Reformers, is the standard (norm) against Scripture, according to the Reformers, is the standard (norm) against which all other sources for theology must be judged, but this standard which all other sources for theology must be judged, but this standard cannot be judged by them. cannot be judged by them.
  243. 243. Proposed Stage of Truth Back Experience Emotions General Revelation Tradition Reason Scripture Front
  244. 244. Question How do the different sources interact to form our theology? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  245. 245. Tradition Tradition Reason Reason Emotions Emotions General Revelation General Revelation Experience Experience 2 Theological Statement . “What is the timeless truth taught?” . “What did it mean then?” • • • • Historical interpretation Grammatical interpretation Contextual interpretation Literary Interpretation Ancient Audience Ancient Audience 1 Exegetical Statement Contemporary Audience Timeless Audience Time-bound Audience 3 Homiletical Statement . “How does it apply to us?”
  246. 246. Subjectiv e Objectiv e •Tradition •Reason •Experience •Emotions •General Revelation Acts 17:11 These Jews were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they eagerly received the message, examining the Scriptures carefully every day to see if these things were so.
  247. 247. Excursus: Does God still Speak Today? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  248. 248. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Has Special Revelation ceased, or does God still communicate to people through prophets, dreams, visions, and audible encounters? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  249. 249. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Three positions: 1. Continuationism 2. Hard Cessationism 3. Soft Cessationism Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  250. 250. Temporary Gifts Supernatural Sign Permanent Gifts Speaking Confirmator Revelatory y • • • • • • • Apostleship • Prophecy • Discerning of • spirits Word of wisdom Word of knowledge Tongues Interpretation of tongues Healings Miracles Tongues • • • • Evangelism Teaching Pastorteacher Exhortation Serving • • • • • Service Showing Mercy Giving Administration Helps
  251. 251. Question What is the Continuationist view of Prophecy? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  252. 252. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Continuationism: View that miraculous sign gifts are still being given and, therefore, God still speaks directly in various ways today. Adherents: Wayne Grudem, Jack Deere, Craig Keener, Jack Hayford Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  253. 253. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Defense of Continuationism: Continuationism Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  254. 254. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 1. Acts 2:14-21 seems to teach that supernatural occurrences such as tongues and prophecy would be normative for the Church era. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  255. 255. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 2. The entire book of Acts seems to show that the supernatural gifts are common within the Church. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  256. 256. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 3. All of Scripture supports the idea that it is God’s nature to work in supernatural ways. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  257. 257. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 4. The New Testament never explicitly states that the supernatural sign gifts would cease. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  258. 258. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? “If you were to lock a “If you were to lock a brand-new Christian in a brand-new Christian in a room with a Bible and tell him room with a Bible and tell him to study what Scripture has to to study what Scripture has to say about healings and say about healings and miracles, he would never come miracles, he would never come out of the room a out of the room a cessationist.” cessationist.” –Jack Deere –Jack Deere Surprised by the Power of the Spirit (Grand Rapids, Mi: Zondervan, 1997), 54 (Grand Rapids, Mi: Zondervan, 1997), 54 Surprised by the Power rights reserved. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. Allof the Spirit
  259. 259. Question What is the Hard Cessationist view of Prophecy? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  260. 260. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Hard Cessationism: View that miraculous sign gifts ceased with the death of the last apostle and the completion of the New Testament. Therefore, God does not speak directly to people today. Adherents: Charles Hodge, John MacArthur, majority of Church history Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  261. 261. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Defense of Hard Cessationism: Cessationism Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  262. 262. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 1. The Bible implicitly supports the idea that the supernatural sign gifts were for the establishment of the Church era. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  263. 263. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Eph. 2:19-20 “So then you are no longer foreigners and noncitizens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of God’s household, because you have been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the cornerstone.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  264. 264. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 2 Cor. 12:12 “Indeed, the signs of an apostle were performed among you with great perseverance by signs and wonders and powerful deeds.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  265. 265. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Heb. 2:3-4 “How will we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was first communicated through the Lord and was confirmed to us by those who heard him, while God confirmed their witness with signs and wonders and various miracles and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  266. 266. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 1 Cor. 13:8-10 •“Love never ends. But if there are prophecies, they will be set aside; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be set aside. For we know in part and we prophesy in part; but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away.” ” Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  267. 267. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 2. It is agreed that the Bible never explicitly states that the sign gifts have ceased. But the Bible never explicitly states that Scripture is complete, yet both cessetionists and non-cessetionists agree that it is. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  268. 268. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 3. If God is still speaking supernaturally through prophecy, tongues, word of wisdom, etc., then the Canon of Scripture is still open. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  269. 269. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? “It might, indeed, be a priori conceivable “It might, indeed, be a priori conceivable that God should deal with men that God should deal with men [individually], and reveal Himself and [individually], and reveal Himself and His will to each individual, throughout the His will to each individual, throughout the whole course of history, in the [depths] of whole course of history, in the [depths] of his own consciousness. This is the mystics his own consciousness. This is the mystics dream. It has not, however, been God’s dream. It has not, however, been God’s way. He has chosen rather to deal with the way. He has chosen rather to deal with the race in its entirety, and to give this race race in its entirety, and to give this race His complete revelation of Himself in an His complete revelation of Himself in an organic whole.” organic whole.” –B.B. Warfield –B.B. Warfield Counterfeit Miracles (Carlisle, PN: Banner of Truth, 1972), 26 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved. Counterfeit Miracles (Carlisle, PN: Banner of Truth, 1972), 26
  270. 270. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 4. If one were to examine the Scripture closely, it becomes evident that God’s direct intervention through prophecy and supernatural signs and wonders was not the norm as it may seem. The Bible, as theological history (not exhaustive history), only records the times when God does intervene, thereby giving the impression that God’s direct encounters through prophets, dreams, visions, etc. are God’s modus operandi when they are not. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  271. 271. Noah 2000+ yrs of apparent silence 50 Elijah & Elisha fa o rs 0y t si ren a pp Moses e nc le 900 yrs of apparent silence Christ and The Apostles
  272. 272. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 5. History convincingly suggests that the supernatural sign gifts have ceased. We do not see evidence of confirmed prophets after the death of the last apostle. Only fringe groups here and there have claimed that God still speaks through prophets, tongues, etc., until the 20th century when the charismatic revival began. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  273. 273. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? “This whole place [1 Cor. 12 on “This whole place [1 Cor. 12 on spiritual gifts] is very spiritual gifts] is very obscure .. .. .. but the obscurity is obscure but the obscurity is produced by our ignorance of the produced by our ignorance of the facts referred to and by their facts referred to and by their cessation, being such as then cessation, being such as then used to occur, but now no longer used to occur, but now no longer take place.” take place.” –John Chrysostom (347-407) –John Chrysostom (347-407) ECF 2.12.1.1.29.0 ECF 2.12.1.1.29.0 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  274. 274. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? “In the earliest time the Holy Ghost fell “In the earliest time the Holy Ghost fell upon them that believed: and they spoke upon them that believed: and they spoke with tongues which they had not learned ‘as with tongues which they had not learned ‘as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ These were the Spirit gave them utterance.’ These were signs adapted to the time. For it was proper signs adapted to the time. For it was proper for the Holy Spirit to evidence Himself in for the Holy Spirit to evidence Himself in all tongues, and to show that the Gospel of all tongues, and to show that the Gospel of God had come to all tongues [languages] God had come to all tongues [languages] over the whole earth. The thing was done for over the whole earth. The thing was done for a authentication and it passed away.” a authentication and it passed away.” –St. Augustine (354-430) –St. Augustinethe(354-430) Ten Homilies on first Epistle of John VI, 10 Ten Homilies on the first Epistle of John VI, 10 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  275. 275. Question What is the Soft Cessationist view of Prophecy? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  276. 276. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Soft Cessationism: Adherents: Or “Soft Continuationist.” The view that the miraculous sign gifts could still be given today, but believers need to be careful about outright acceptance of people’s claims of possession. D. A. Carson, Robert Saucy Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  277. 277. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Defense of Soft Cessationism: Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  278. 278. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 1. Neither side’s arguments are conclusive. We must therefore proceed with great caution. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  279. 279. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 2. While it may be true that Church history has not seen the continuation of God speaking directly, this does not mean that it is not possible. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  280. 280. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? “God, in his ordinary providence, “God, in his ordinary providence, makes use of means, yet is free makes use of means, yet is free to work without, above, and to work without, above, and against them, at his pleasure.” against them, at his pleasure.” –Westminster Confession of –Westminster Confession of Faith Faith 5.3 5.3 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  281. 281. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? 3. Those who adhere to a futuristic interpretation of Revelation must concede that there are going to be prophets in the future as represented by the Two Witnesses (Rev. 11:3) and, possibly, the 144,000 Israelites (Rev. 7:4). Therefore, we must be open to further direct revelation from God. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  282. 282. Excursus: Does God Still Speak Today? Guiding Principles: Principles 1. God’s Word is not something to be trifled with (Ex. 20:7). 2. If you are a prophet, you must show convincing signs of a prophet (Deut 18:15-22). 3. If you are a prophet, you must have orthodox theology (Deut. 13:1-3). 4. If someone believes that they have a word from the Lord, they had better be certain and be ready to live by the consequences if it turns out false. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  283. 283. Unity and Diversity Doing Theology in the Emerging Context Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  284. 284. Unity and Diversity How do we do theology in our emerging context? Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  285. 285. Unity and Diversity semper reformanda “Always reforming” This is the Reformation principle that Christian theology is always This is the Reformation principle that Christian theology is always undergoing change, enhancement, and development. the Reformers undergoing change, enhancement, and development. the Reformers understood that if theology was, at any point, thought to be solidified understood that if theology was, at any point, thought to be solidified and one person’s, group’s, tradition’s, or denomination’s perspective and one person’s, group’s, tradition’s, or denomination’s perspective was thought of to be “above all reproach” and, therefore, unable to be was thought of to be “above all reproach” and, therefore, unable to be developed, the task of doing theology would be severely grieved. Our developed, the task of doing theology would be severely grieved. Our theology must be reforming itself continually. theology must be reforming itself continually.
  286. 286. Unity and Diversity Apostles’ Creed I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead and buried; He descended into the grave The third day he rose again from the dead He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead I believe in the Holy Ghost I believe a holy catholic church; the communion of saints The forgiveness of sins The resurrection of the body And the life everlasting. Amen. Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  287. 287. Unity and Diversity Unity and Diversity among the Traditions Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  288. 288. Unity and Diversity Doctrine of Man and Grace (fifth century) Doctrine of Christ Definition of Chalcedon (451) Trinity (325) Counsel of Nicea (325) 100 A.D. 400 A.D. Doctrine of the Atonement (eleventh century) 1100 A.D. 1600 A.D. 2000 A.D.
  289. 289. Unity and Diversity Unity and Diversity among Protestant Denominations Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  290. 290. Unity and Diversity Five “Solas” of the Protestant Reformation Reformed Understanding Meaning Sola Scriptura Sola Christus The “Scripture alone” contains primary authority to dictate the lives of believers. The work of “Christ alone” is the basis for justification. Sola Gratia Justification is by means of God’s “grace alone.” Sola Fide Sola deo Gloria “Faith alone” is the only instrumental cause of justification. All is done for “God’s glory alone.”
  291. 291. Unity and Diversity Doctrine of Man and Grace (fifth century) Doctrine of Christ Definition of Chalcedon (451) Trinity (325) Counsel of Nicea (325) 100 A.D. 400 A.D. Doctrine of Scripture (sixteenth century) Doctrine of Justification (sixteenth century) Doctrine of the Atonement (eleventh century) 1100 A.D. 1600 A.D. 2000 A.D.
  292. 292. Unity and Diversity Unity and Diversity among the Sexes Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  293. 293. Unity and Diversity Unity and Diversity among the Nations Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  294. 294. Unity and Diversity Unity and Diversity among the Peoples Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.
  295. 295. Unity and Diversity Luke 8:5-18 Copyright © 2004, The Theology Program. All rights reserved.

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