A call for humble disagreements on theology

A call for humble disagreements on theology June 23, 2005

Eternal Perspectives: speaks of the ESV and admits his ignorance of the issues that translators consider carefully. He goes on to mention a specific case from Moo-

“Moo is saying, in essence, that he has made a choice about this particular passage but he understands that others see it differently. He stands by his choice and believes it to be the best approach when all the factors are taken into consideration. But he is not so presumptuous or arrogant to be dogmatic or to dismiss opposing views. He, an exegete of the first-order, understands the difficulties with the passage and respects those who come to different conclusions (e.g., C.E.B. Cranfield in this instance).

There is a valuable lesson for us all in Moo’s humility. Certainly we can choose to disagree, but we must be honest with ourselves and admit our ignorance and limitations. We must be cautious in passing judgment or presenting our opinions as though they are the final word in the matter.

Few of us could carry on a meaningful conversation with scholars such as Moo, the ESV translation committee, or other experts in this narrow discipline. That does not mean that we are not entitled to an opinion; it does mean that our opinions likely do not carry as much weight as those of the experts.”

What our writer is calling for is some humility. It is our arrogance and pride that gets in the way of our listening correctly to insights from others studying the bible.

Sadly we are all too often like a group of four blind men who have come accross an elephant. “It is a tree!” crys one as he feels the leg. “Nonsense man it is a snake says the other feeling the trunk”, “Nonsense man it is a fly flitting around says the other being gently brushed by the tail”.

We may not be blind, but we do see in part and as such can gain from the insights of others who approach the elephant of Gods word from a different angle and thus describe what they see in very different terms from us. Some theological arguments are very much like that, and becoming entrenched and over systemising out view can lead us into division and heresy. I will speak some more of this tomorrow God willing.

Wayne of better bibles has a similar call

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