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Re: “Proper” and “Rightly”: How Conservative Evangelicals Creat

Re: “Proper” and “Rightly”: How Conservative Evangelicals Creat

I wouldn’t say that there are "proper" understandings of Scripture.

I would be more inclined to say that there are multiple understandings of Scripture, which is a point that is hard to deny. 

I would add that some understandings I agree with and am more closely aligned with than other understandings.  Conservative evangelicals often happen to offer an interpretation that I strongly disagree with for a lot of different reasons on a lot of different points.  I try to flesh these concerns out in essays here at OST

A point that should be kept in the foreground, I think, is that Jesus didn’t say anything about a "universal truth."  I’m often puzzled at why so many Christians hang their faith around such tokens of modern epistemology.

I am as I believe we all are (now there’s a Big claim for you :-)) situated in concrete times and places.  It’s a situational bet I’m making—as opposed to the universalist bet you’re making.  And I think that regardless of what truth you align yourself with you are alighning yourself with a contextually dependent understanding of that truth.   

The story of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection is a story that has a long and glorious and somtimes troubled history.  But to be clear, it is a story told and brought to life in a great variety of times and places by concrete people and in each telling that story is artfully constituted.  There isn’t One Big Jesus Story, at least none that have stood the vissicitudes of the various times and places of their telling.  To believe that the specific story that we happen to hear and that we happen to tell is The Story To End All Other Stories is to (I believe) basically blind oneself to this long and varied history and to our mundane and rather small place in it.  And, I would add, it is to abandon any genuine sense of humility. 

My understanding is as situated as anyone else’s story.  I don’t particularly expect you to adopt my understanding.  I just want a place to speak my piece about what I believe and hopefully inspire some illuminating and challenging discussion about the mountain and mystery of God that we are climbing.  

“Proper” and “Rightly”: How Conservative Evangelicals Creatively Manage the Scriptures By: Jacob (23 replies) 16 March, 2008 - 21:58