Dr. Platypus

Taking Notes from Reading

Here’s an honest question to which I’d love to receive dozens of honest answers:

(1) If you are a college professor: Do you require your students to use a particular note-taking method, and if so, which one? What is your rationale for this decision?

(2) If you are a college student: Does your institution—or do your professors—require you to use a particular note-taking method, and if so, which one?

Thanks!

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Happy Feast Day of St. Nicholas!

Try not to slug any heretics (if you can avoid it)!

November 2017 Biblical Studies Carnival

Posted for your reading pleasure by Jim West at his Zwinglius Redivivus blog.

If You’ve Left Evangelicalism, Which One?

Evangelicalism has been a problematic term for a long time. It seems to evade all attempts to define it, at least over the last few decades. Part of the problem is that there are, in fact, several different “evangelicalisms.” Scot McKnight highlights a few, bouncing ideas off of Kenneth J. Stewart’s In Search of Ancient Roots: The Christian Past and the Evangelical Identity Crisis. McKnight suggests there are at least four kinds of evangelical:

  1. Pragmatic. (He sees this as characteristic of megachurches.)
  2. Belligerent. (Also known as fundamentalist.)
  3. Politicized. (McKnight’s category, not Stewart’s. Obviously very prevalent in the US these days.)
  4. Historic. (Rooted to the Great Awakening[s], the Reformation, and even earlier expressions of Christianity.)

This reminds me of a spiel I did years ago when I taught church history and proposed a typology of “Conservative Resurgences.” (I specifically chose the term “conservative resurgence” for reasons that may be obvious to anybody who was a Southern Baptist in the 1980s and 1990s.) I may have to see if I still have those notes.

So, have you left evangelicalism? Have you left one or more of McKnight’s categories but held firm to another?

October 2017 Biblical Studies Carnival

Doug Chaplin has the hosting honors this month. Go visit his blog and see what’s worth reading about in biblical studies!

August 2017 Biblical Studies Carnival

Posted at Eis Doxan. Enjoy!

The “New and Improved” Perspective on Paul?

Scot McKnight is working through Stephen Chester’s Reading Paul with the Reformers at his JesusCreed blog. (Here’s part 1; here’s part 2.) In today’s blog post, he interacts in some detail with a passage from Chester that takes issue with the New Perspective’s assertion that the Reformers missed Paul’s point about justification by faith. I’m not sure that all NP supporters would agree that the Reformers were wrong so much as they placed the emphasis in the wrong place, but others are certainly deeper into this debate than I am. McKnight summarizes Chester’s questions thusly:

Chester begins with Luther and Erasmus and more importantly uses them for the hermeneutical dichotomy they created: Should we do “theological interpretation” (Luther) or historical critical work (Erasmus), and is the Bible clear in all it says (Luther) but difficult at times (Erasmus), and does the ambiguity of Scripture create problems (Erasmus) or is it a false approach (Luther)?

Chester elaborates on several key points of disagreement between Luther and Erasmus on the proper interpretation of Scripture. This leads, ultimately, to a threefold criterion for discerning the best interpretations, namely:

The conflict of interpretations is thus best addressed by a mixed hermeneutic. The goal of hearing the Spirit speak through Paul in his texts is served by applying the triple criteria of

historical plausibility,
canonical consistency,
and contemporary theological fruitfulness.

McKnight suggests Chester is “doing the newer new perspective, one that appreciates too the Reformers’ reading of Paul.”

 

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