A friendly critique of Küng’s view vis-à-vis miracles Pt 1 of 2
3) So, what are my difficulties with Küng’s presentation in Der Anfang Aller Dinge?
3a) I wonder if the ‘modern people’ he wishes to give ‘a helpful answer to’, are indeed modern? Modernist, yes, but modern? A generation raised on ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’, and such like, don’t, I think, have the slightest problem with miracles. The point: His claimed apologetic motives are, I suspect, simply out-of-date for many.
3b) Ben Myers quotes Küng’s Christ Sein in his comments to his first post on this subject: ‘[T]here is no question here of all or nothing, of everything being legendary or nothing being legendary. There is no need at all either to accept all miracle stories in an uncritical, fundamentalist spirit as historical facts..., or, on the other hand in a spirit of narrow-minded rationalism to refuse to take any miracle stories seriously. The hasty conclusion is a result of putting all miracle stories on the same plane’ (p. 229). This crucial comment, or something like it, is, however, missing in Der Anfang Aller Dinge.
3c) ‘In the Hebrew Bible and in the NT, nowhere does one differentiate between miracles that correspond to the laws of nature, and those that explode (sprengen) them’ (p. 171). This is, I suggest, an oversimplification of the epistemological Unterscheidungskraft of the ancients in the near east, who were quite aware of those things that normally happened, and those that didn’t. This is bordering, to use a C.S. Lewis phrase, on chronological snobbery.