Blog Archives

The tyranny of individualism in interpretation

Kent Eilers posted a nice quote from D.H. Williams, warning about the Protestant tendency to emphasize individual Bible reading so much that we end up with individual “popes,” each with their own authoritative interpretation. The quote ends like this:

 It is a Pyrrhic victory for Free church Protestantism when the net effect of its teaching results in the replacing of the tyranny of the magisterium with the tyranny of individualism [Retrieving the Tradition, Renewing Evangelicalism (Eerdmans, 1999), p. 201]

You can read the full post and comments over at Theology Forum.

Flotsam and jetsam (6/12)

  • Stephen Moshier takes John McArthur to task for his recent critique of the geological principle of uniformitarianism (i.e. geologic processes are the same today as they’ve always been). Moshier points out that McArthur’s definitions and arguments are a little outdated (i.e. he’s criticizing 19th century geology). The post serves as another example that we should be very careful offering authoritative critiques of work done in areas in which we are not specialists (see Giberson on that topic here).
  • Philip Sumpter has finally concluded his extended (to say the least) series on theological interpretation. The posts in the series and the various discussions they sparked are worth perusing if you want to get a feel for the issues.
  • T&T Clark’s “companions” series has been launched with its Companion to Methodism. I’ll be interested to see if they are as helpful as they look like they might be.
  • In a rather shocking development, Pope Benedict has rejected demands for the Catholic Church to reverse its position on clerical celibacy. Did anyone really think this was going to go any differently?
  • Apparently there are lots of sites where you can get your daily news in comic form…in Japanese. Why do they get all the cool comics?
  • And, Matt Mikalatos discusses why Denver International Airport is watched over by the Egyptian god of death and other unusual stories about the airport (including its very own smoke monster). I connect through Denver quite a bit, so I paid attention to this one. I think I’m going to start flying through Minneapolis more instead.