Wednesday, September 02, 2015

I (Still) Believe: Scot McKnight

The book is out, John Byron and Joel Lohr's, I (Still) Believe! You can now get it for reals! Although I'm finishing the book, I'm being more selective now in my posts. Here is a post on Scot McKnight's testimony.

Previous posts include:

Richard Bauckham
Walter Brueggemann
Ellen Davis
James Dunn
Gordon Fee
Beverly Roberts Gaventa
John Goldingay

1. I have always known that Scot likes sports, and that is clear from this chapter as well. He traded in a sports destiny for a teaching one, though, when he was injured his senior year of high school. There's no question in my mind that Scot has had a blessed life. I'm sure he has had pains as well, but his life gives off a strong aroma of peace.

He married his childhood sweetheart before he was even out of college. They have a model marriage, indeed a dream marriage. He is obviously a greatly intelligent scholar. You can see his appetite to learn everywhere in this chapter. Unlike myself, who mostly wanted to read, read, read, Scot was actually able to do it.

He was one of Dunn's students when he was still at Nottingham. He ended up teaching at Trinity. His taking of Wayne Grudem's place is ironic, as he mentions. He pitched to Walter Kaiser (then Dean) that they needed an Arminian who favored women in ministry to balance out the department. I have never heard a negative word from Scot about Trinity, but it is also clear that he is now finally in his sweet spot at Northern (with a good run at North Park in the meantime).

Northern is an amazing seminary in Chicago with an amazing team. Important for him is the unified support for women in ministry there. This is also a value of Wesley Seminary and Indiana Wesleyan University. Last week a prospective student at Wesley Seminary asked if she would only be allowed to take certain courses because she is a woman. That's the way it is at some seminaries. Why would a woman go there??? Come to Northern or Wesley or IWU's School of Theology and Ministry!

2. He has some nice stories of his interactions with students over the years. A key insight he shares is that "I was not teaching subjects to students... but teaching students about a subject" (166).

In college Scot transitioned from fundamentalism to evangelicalism. A class on the Synoptic Gospels made him what he is. In particular, over the next years his detailed study of the Gospels would convince him that they used sources and edited them in keeping with their theologies.

The end point of this journey was a sense that the Bible "is not one self-contained text added to the previous but one text interacting with--sometimes agreeing, sometimes even disagreeing, but often expanding and adjusting and renewing--the previous texts" (167). "God's inspiration then is at work in a history and a community as expressed by an author for a given moment."

He concludes that "the Bible is God's true and living Word is far more in line with the realities of the Bible itself than the political terms that have arisen among evangelicals in the twentieth century" (168). And here he refers to the term inerrancy.

I'll let you buy the book and read the rest, including some controversial comments on historical Jesus studies.

Scot's the man!

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