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Tim Henderson has posted his summary of the next essay from Martin Hengel’s Between Jesus and Paul: “Christology and New Testament Chronology.”
Do go read Pete Enns’s latest at Huffington Post: “3 Reasons Why Apostle Paul Is the Crazy Uncle No One Wants to Talk About (and 2 Reasons Why We Need to Get Over That).” If you’re in my CHR 150 class, read it twice. It will save you some time and heartache in a couple of weeks.
Tim Henderson has begun a review of the six essays included in Martin Hengel’s, Between Jesus and Paul. Hurray! The first is “Between Jesus and Paul: The ‘Hellenists’, the ‘Seven’ and Stephen (Acts 6.1-15; 7.54-8.3),” from which the volume gets its name. I’ll gather links to all of Tim’s summaries here for ease of reference.
Michael Bird may not know it, but he’s hit a bit too close to the truth for a lot of us former Southern Baptists:
Instead of thinking of “conservative” evangelicalism as defined objectively by holding to the historical faith of the church defined by the creeds and confessions, I think some bastions of American evangelicalism define “conservatism” comparatively by a relative position to everyone else on the map. So when certain people or groups edge to the right to claim the label, “I’m more conservative than thou,” then every else responds by leap frogging over them in a race to the right. You end up with a denomination or seminary becoming far right just because they don’t want to be the least conservative group on the block. It also means you can end up being called a liberal just by standing still and refusing to follow the rightward drift.
Of course, those who just stood still may then be tempted to do the same leapfrogging dance in a leftward direction, just to prove they’re not like those other blighters. But that’s a topic for a different post.
Somebody needs to build this. I would pay to see it.
Welcome to the Whirlwind Creation Museum. Other so-called creation museums place their emphasis on a narrow, literalistic, modernist reading of the early chapters of Genesis. They imagine that these chapters simply “tell it like it is” — this is how God did it. Period. We, however, focus on a more panoramic and comprehensive text about how God created and rules over the universe, our world and its inhabitants: Job, chapters 38-42. This passage reminds us that we weren’t there, and none of us actually has any idea what God has wrought or how it all fits together. Job teaches us that herein lies wisdom.
It is my pleasure to give you an overview of the museum today, so that I might then set you free to explore the vast wonders of creation on your own — wonders that go beyond our human ability to describe and explain.
You see, we think the most basic truth about creation is its ultimate incomprehensibility.
Though we humans have the privilege to use our minds and imaginations to explore and discover and theorize and understand God’s creation, we will never come to the end of it. Its sheer scope and its innumerable mysteries resist our attempts to grasp it all. Its contradictions and conundrums stretch the limits of our logic. Before this great universe, we are very small. We do not think this should discourage us, however. Instead, we devote ourselves to learning, appreciating, contemplating, and proclaiming the splendor of God’s handiwork. In the end we yield our quest for all knowledge to the spirit of trust and worship.