Liberal?

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Posts 68
Mick | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Apr 14 2010 6:27 AM

Jonathan West:

MichaelFinch:
If we are not feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and visiting the ill and in prison (the disenfranchised of our culture) then we have missed the boat and all our theological positioning is a mute point.

Some might view this as a "liberal" interpretation of the parable of the sheep and the goatsStick out tongue

 

Jesus said to Peter, "feed my sheep." If I interpret that to mean feed my church (or belivers) is that a liberal position????

Does anything other than a "literal" interpretation mean it is liberal or just anything I do not agree with????

Thanks for your comments, Mick

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Apr 14 2010 10:32 AM

ReneAtchley:

I think we should have a contest in which I win a Logos product for each person who guesses wrong....but thats just me.

Well, you would win at l;east one prize because you have posted contrary sounding views... Tongue Tied  (Not regarding your gender but the spiritual maturity of seminary students. Wink )

I don't speak French but considering Dr Oullette's parents spelled his name  Rene (not Renee) and they are of French heritage, I would hazard a guess the second "e" suffix changes the gender in French. Am I incorrect in my "liberal" parsing of this logos?

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Posts 321
Rene Atchley | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Apr 14 2010 11:50 AM

Well the last part of the sentence should have read "moral parents", but it was kind of fun to watch how people ran with it.    I dont know...I was told that Rene is a different meaning than Renee in french...all I have is a few degrees in social work and theology.

Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 9:21 AM

"Liberal, like every other label, is relative and difficult to define other than perhaps at the extremes or as a stereo type. Also, assuming that your concern is theological, remember that a dictionary like AYBD will contain a lot of articles where the theological disposition of the writer will not actually make a lot of difference. Also with dictionaries its always worth checking in multiple different ones to see what they have to say and whether there is a consensus.Personally I have found that liberal does not necessarily equal bad and I try not to dismiss anything simply because the author holds a different theological position to mine."

 "Well said Graham. The position you take is a sign of spiritual and academic maturity."

Indeed.  Those of us that are liberals sometimes have to chuckle a bit when the topic of "safe" (<g>) sources comes up.  If a person's faith is horribly shaken simply by hearing a different point of view, then such faith was not very strong to start with, methinks.  Furthermore, I think we can (and should) ~all~ learn from each other - such learning is not only "a sign of spiritual and academic maturity", it is also a sign of reverence for and trust in God, by using the collective minds that God gave to all of us.

Fred

Fred

Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 9:35 AM

Graham Owen:

I think that a lot of people share the fear of being subverted by 'liberal theology' sadly most of them don't actually know what they mean by that. Its a bit like the ten commandments its easier to get an amen from the congregation by saying we believe in them than it is to get someone from the congregation to name them all! I know that saying we don't believe in 'liberal theology' will get a real big amen whem I'm preaching but very few people can articulate what it means.

Well, first, one would have to reach agreement as to ~which~ "10 commandments" from the Bible the congregation is to say "amen" to.  Smile

Fred

Posts 296
Jonathan West | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 9:37 AM

MichaelFinch:

Jonathan West:

MichaelFinch:
If we are not feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and visiting the ill and in prison (the disenfranchised of our culture) then we have missed the boat and all our theological positioning is a mute point.

Some might view this as a "liberal" interpretation of the parable of the sheep and the goatsStick out tongue

 

Jesus said to Peter, "feed my sheep." If I interpret that to mean feed my church (or belivers) is that a liberal position????

Does anything other than a "literal" interpretation mean it is liberal or just anything I do not agree with????

Thanks for your comments, Mick

HI Mick

I think that saying feed my sheep = feed my church = believers is correct. Some take the parable of the sheep and goats as a basis for what is known as the social gospel - and such people tend towards being "liberal". I believe the correct way to understand the parable is that the outcome of judgment depends on what a person does with the gospel presented by the apostles - which will work itself out in love for believers (i.e. see 1 John).

I think other people have said this, but in theological terms (and historically) a liberal is someone who does not accept the inerrancy and infallibility and sufficiency of scripture as being God's word.

Hope that helps.

www.emmanuelecc.org

Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 9:39 AM

Graham Owen:

I would also add that liberal theology typically denies the supernatural nature of God and seeks undermine God's supremacy by elevating the status of man.

Then how do you explain the fact that ~some~ liberals have an ~intense~ love of God?

Fred

Posts 296
Jonathan West | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 9:44 AM

What's the link? Some people have an intense love for their cat - but that doesn't mean they think their cat is powerful in any way ...

www.emmanuelecc.org

Posts 611
Graham Owen | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 10:36 AM

Frederick Wasti:

Graham Owen:

I would also add that liberal theology typically denies the supernatural nature of God and seeks undermine God's supremacy by elevating the status of man.

 

Then how do you explain the fact that ~some~ liberals have an ~intense~ love of God?

I don't think that having a super natural nature or personal status are pre requisites for love, if they were then God could not love man!

In my personal experience it is a mistake to make assumptions about the nature and depth of someone's love for God based on their theological presuppositions. 

God Bless

Graham

Pastor - NTCOG Basingstoke

Posts 321
Rene Atchley | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 11:25 AM

I wonder what Jesus would be since he didn't have The Chicago Statement, The Fundamentals of the Faith, The Jesus Seminar, or even an Existential Hermeneutic to follow.   I also wonder why after nearly a hundred years of debating there is still a conversation about who and how bad each side is in this North American debate.  I also wonder how this involves Logos and their products...buyer beware....look it up.

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 11:51 AM

ReneAtchley:
about who and how bad each side is in this North American debate

 

This is hardly just a "North American" debate. Today's blog http://blog.logos.com/ highlights yet another of Christian history's greatest minds engaging in this battle for the soul of the Church. Pannenberg would say, just like Thomas Black, "Truth is still truth, even if you don't believe it." Just because everybody wants to redefine Jesus into a little box where they can control Him, does not mean lovers of the Truth should quit arguing just to have peace with those who "liberally" (carelessly?) handle the Word.

btw: Logos resources can help shed a lot of light on this "debate>":
Pannenberg's Systematic Theology (3 Vols.)  http://www.logos.com/products/details/2549
Oxford Movement Historical Theology Collection (10 Vols.) http://www.logos.com/products/details/2940
The Works of Cornelius Van Til (40 Vols.) http://www.logos.com/products/details/3993
Theological Studies Collection (22 Vols.) http://www.logos.com/products/prepub/details/4534

Closing one's mind to the questions does nothing but propagate the ignorance.

 

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Posts 274
Daniel Lee | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 11:53 AM

ReneAtchley:

I wonder what Jesus would be since he didn't have The Chicago Statement, The Fundamentals of the Faith, The Jesus Seminar, or even an Existential Hermeneutic to follow.   I also wonder why after nearly a hundred years of debating there is still a conversation about who and how bad each side is in this North American debate.  I also wonder how this involves Logos and their products...buyer beware....look it up.

No need to wonder.  John 14:6 - Jesus is the only way to God, not a good teacher or a moral example. Instead, John 10:30/Colossians 1:15, He is God.  John 17:17/2 Timothy 3:16-17/1 Peter 1:21 - His word is truth, given directly from God, as the authoritative source of Truth, since He is truth.

If anyone does not believe these things, then he is condemned already, John 3:36, because he has not believed in Jesus as the Son of God, very God, who died for our sins, Romans 10:8-10, cf. Romans 5:12-21.

We can debate the labels, but the truth of Scripture - authoritative, inerrant, teaching about Jesus as God - is not optional.

FrederickWasti:

Indeed.  Those of us that are liberals sometimes have to chuckle a bit when the topic of "safe" (<g>) sources comes up.  If a person's faith is horribly shaken simply by hearing a different point of view, then such faith was not very strong to start with, methinks.  Furthermore, I think we can (and should) ~all~ learn from each other - such learning is not only "a sign of spiritual and academic maturity", it is also a sign of reverence for and trust in God, by using the collective minds that God gave to all of us.

Trying to understand other points of view is not a bad idea.  However, openness to ideas that the Bible does not teach is not only not maturity, it's arrogance - assuming we know better than God.  So our source of authority must be what God has actually said, not "the collective minds" of academics or otherwise.  And yes, we're individually responsible for God, using tools - Logos, other books, whatever - to discern what God has said.

Thanks.  That's all I have to contribute on this.

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 12:08 PM

Daniel Lee:
Trying to understand other points of view is not a bad idea.  However, openness to ideas that the Bible does not teach is not only not maturity, it's arrogance - assuming we know better than God.  So our source of authority must be what God has actually said

Couldn't be stated any better. I would like to point out Pannenberg believed God's Truth can stand the scrutiny of logic, historical and scientific inquiiry and would, in the end, be proven to have been correct all along. Of course God does seem to tolerate fools for a period of time. Isaiah 1:18 shows God confounding the reason of men. Whenever we think we know.....God knows better. That is why I can study & question, and easily accept God's claims when they apparently disagree with what I "know" as true. It is interesting Pannenberg did not regard science as having hold of the truth. Why do the youth of today so easily accept the lies of "science?"

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Posts 321
Rene Atchley | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 12:53 PM

One may argue inerrancy but Jesus didn't teach inerrancy or any other theological ideology...and what does this have to do with Logos products

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 1:09 PM

Theology is only man's feeble attempt to explain God. It is an attempt that is doomed to failure from the start. That is one reason Logos has asked us not to bother debating these issues. But instead Logos kindly provides us with many resources to read for ourselves and accept, reject or ponder how on-target they may be. Only God knows all truth. What God chooses to reveal to us is the extent to which we can know truth. I believe God has done so in His Word (the Bible.) My interest in theology is not the search for truth in other's writings. It is an interest in the history and experiences of those theologians' pursuits. I do not believe Luther, Calvin, the Pope or Pannenberg (or anybody) can improve upon God's revelation. I find it interesting to read what they thought. Some people golf, some watch TV, I read.

Yes, we would all probably be better off just reading the Bible and doing little else in the way of hobbies or entertainment. Including debating theology or philosophy.

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Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 1:19 PM

Well, I can see that my post (and, in fact, many a post in this thread), violates the Logos forum guideline of "Please do not discuss or debate biblical, theological, or other controversial topics.", so I will withdraw it.

I'll go back to being a liberal in silence (in this forum)...

Fred

Posts 579
Jim VanSchoonhoven | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 1:55 PM

Frederick, I have not started at the first post  of this thread and read everything in context, but I still have a question for you.

I am assuming that you belief there are somethings that are true and somethings that are not, if you do not believe that, my question will not make much sense.

You said, " To quote any source (the Bible of otherwise) as proof that the source is inerrant is circular "logic"."  My question is, just because something is circular logic does that make it untrue? 

Another question I have is can a person have faith in something that is true and yet not be able to prove something to be logical, even if it is true?

Please don't take these comments as either agreeing with or disagreeing with the point you are making, they are just questions that have come to my mind after seeing your post.

In Christ,

Jim

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 1:57 PM

Frederick Wasti:
To believe that scripture is inerrant and/or authoritative, despite -, is an act of faith, not an act of logic.

I guess there is no use pointing out you accept this "evidence to the contrary" as true (based on your faith in the sources of that evidence.) In fact there is no use continuing dialogue with persons who do not believe God is capable of delivering His word without coruption. Maybe that is why Logos asks we not bother.

However, deeper reading of Pannenberg (today's blog post) reveals truth is not contained in isloation in a different sphere but is coherent with all revelation from God.

Related Logos resources that address your "position":
God, Revelation and Authority (6 Vols.) http://www.logos.com/products/details/2121
Encountering the Divine: Theophany in Biblical Narrative http://www.logos.com/products/details/3853
What You Should Know about Inerrancy  http://www.logos.com/ebooks/details/cr_inerr
The Collected Works of John M. Frame, Vol. 1: Theology http://www.logos.com/products/details/3586

EDIT, fwiw:   Mortimer Adler commented on the selection criteria of the Great Books of the Western World, "In the third place, a consideration not operative in the selection process was the truth of an author's opinions or views, or the truth to be found in a particular work. This point is generally misunderstood; many persons think that we regard the great books as a repository of mankind's success in its ever-continuing pursuit of the truth. "That is simply not the case". There is much more error in the great books than there is truth. By anyone's criteria of what is true or false, the great books will be found to contain some truths, but many more mistakes and errors."

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Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 4:35 PM

JimVanSchoonhoven:

Frederick, I have not started at the first post  of this thread and read everything in context, but I still have a question for you.

I am assuming that you belief there are somethings that are true and somethings that are not, if you do not believe that, my question will not make much sense.

Hi, Jim.  Yes, I would agree with your assumption.

JimVanSchoonhoven:

You said, " To quote any source (the Bible of otherwise) as proof that the source is inerrant is circular "logic"."  My question is, just because something is circular logic does that make it untrue? 

Logically, no, certainly not, necessarily.

JimVanSchoonhoven:

Another question I have is can a person have faith in something that is true and yet not be able to prove something to be logical, even if it is true? 

Absolutely.  I have faith in some things I believe that I cannot (yet, anyway - <g>) prove, so I would have to agree with that.

JimVanSchoonhoven:

Please don't take these comments as either agreeing with or disagreeing with the point you are making, they are just questions that have come to my mind after seeing your post.

Understood, Jim - thanks for your thoughtful questions.

Fred

Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 16 2010 4:46 PM

Matthew C Jones:

In fact there is no use continuing dialogue with persons who do not believe God is capable of delivering His word without coruption.

I would disagree with that, Matthew - I would hope that there always is worth in pursuing dialogue.  (Too much woe in this world is caused by people who refuse to converse with each other, in my humble opinion.)

Matthew C Jones:

Maybe that is why Logos asks we not bother.

Perhaps, but I doubt that is the reason.

Fred

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