Saturday, September 01, 2007

Keep Up With My Unreality

Collin Hansen, who wrote THIS a year ago, has begun A NEW COLUMN over at CT aimed at keeping folks up-to-date on current issues in theology. In particular, he notes that this might be a handy way for families to keep abreast of things their son or daughter might be thinking about in seminary. He begins the column this way: "Seminary is not reality. That much became obvious to me the moment I met my classmates and began looking over syllabi for classes on Greek, Hebrew, missions, and biblical theology." Well that's true, however, as Hansen himself goes on to note, seminary affords a unique time in a person's life to give focused attention to important theological matters. I came to seminary to know and love Christ more and to become more like him, and to prepare to serve his Church faithfully. So have the 4,000 other SBTS students, which is what makes this place unreal--and wonderful.

The column will be published online every two weeks. Hansen begins this week by addressing the New Perspective on Paul (there is one, and I've heard--I haven't read for myself at all yet--it dismantles justification by faith alone by suggesting that Martin Luther projected the Medieval Catholicism of his day back into New Testament Judaism, and that every Protestant since has misread Paul). Here's a snippet from Hansen's first installment:

The average churchgoer will never have the time or inclination to focus on theology. Even in our most rigorous churches, the cares of this world interfere. Perhaps an encounter with a seminary graduate has convinced them that theology belongs to arrogant eggheads. As a result, what seems so important in seminary produces blank stares in the pews.

For evangelicals—Christians committed to a high view of Scripture—this is a discouraging scenario. More than that, it's dangerous. Christian colleges and seminaries can grow detached from the churches they serve. Hazardous ideas can percolate for decades without so much as a nod from most churchgoers. And parents wonder why their undergraduate daughter or seminary son graduates with odd ideas about everything. So they blame the theologians and the cycle continues.

But what if they knew more about current debates? What if someone could direct them toward resources that would help them think theologically about current events? I hope that in some small way, this column might help those of you who want to care about theology but lack the time to skim blogs. Maybe you'd consider attending a conference if you only knew when or where to go. You might even read the occasional book if someone explained why it's important. As I draw on the help of scholars and friends, I hope this column will become a destination for you to catch what you might have missed in the last two weeks and discern what you otherwise might not have foreseen. Continue Reading...

(HT: B2W)

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