Friday, March 28, 2014

10 random NT scholarship issues that make my inner alarm bells ring

1) When scholars take themselves too seriously, and speak continually about their achievements and how important they are to NT scholarship.
2) When NT scholars of any stripe think theology is one thing, historical work another, as if the two make sense as two separate tasks hermeneutically sealed off from one another. Of course, this is not to deny a legitimate "divisions of labour" or "interpretative levels" (to use Childs' speak).
3) When scholars think Rezeptionsgeschichte magics away the major questions relating to the conversation between theology and history.
4) When the word “Bayesians” is used in fumbling hands.
5) When Paul and John are bracketed from historical Jesus scholarship.
6) When Christology is said to develop "higher" only later.
7) When the word "covenantal" is used, in Pauline studies, as a banner deployed in opposition to "apocalyptic".
8) When I read a "summary" of Bultmann followed hastily by a "devastating" critique.
9) When scholars are dismissed because they are popular.
10) When scholars are dismissed because they are unpopular.


At 3/28/2014 5:07 PM, Anonymous Heather said...

No. 6 - yes, yes, yes!

At 3/28/2014 5:36 PM, Blogger Michael Barber said...

Good list! Amen! Preach it, brother!

At 3/29/2014 5:21 PM, Anonymous C. Bauserman said...

Number... freaking... two. Number... freaking... seven. Paul DOES have the capability of blending styles and thinking multiple thought patterns, and all NT writers did not think theologically without thinking historically.
That is all.

At 3/29/2014 9:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Could easily include all of these on my "seriously annoying" list but have a special place for items two, five, and six. Thanks, Chris! Feel free to keep adding.

At 3/29/2014 9:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Anonymous" has come out and revealed he's Charles Twombly, a retired teacher living in rural Georgia (US).

At 4/17/2014 11:07 AM, Blogger Robin Parry said...

"Amen (x 10)"

says Robin Parry

At 4/26/2014 11:03 AM, Blogger Unknown said...


what do you mean by 4?

Jonathan , baffled statistician ( who knows vetry little about Biblical studies but who would be intrigued to know how Bayesian ideas have got into the field)


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