Showing posts from November, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

When you have a 14-month old son, you don't have a lot of free time on holidays for deep theological reflection. So, instead, I leave you with this...

New Look at DET

Those of you who interact with me here at DET solely through a RSS reader will not have noticed, but DET has undergone a much overdue face-lift. I hope you all like it and find it more functional than the previous look. H/T to Chris for pointing me in the right direction on this stuff.

Kathryn Tanner on Condign and Congruent Merit

In this section, Tanner is explicating the theology of Gabriel Biel, and pointing out ways in which he diverged from previous scholastic positions in subtle ways. This whole section is interesting, and I highly recommend you take a look at it for yourself. But, here is a not insignificant portion to whet your appetite a bit more concerning this rather esoteric theological discussion. I find the development that Tanner lays out here to be very important to Reformation history as, if my memory serves me, Luther was trained in Biel's tradition. If Biel is an aberration of a more basic scholastic position, Luther is (perhaps) a corrective rather than an aberration in his own right. Just a thought. :-) Kathryn Tanner, God and Creation in Christian Theology: Tyranny or Empowerment? (Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 2005): 140-1. “In traditional use (e.g., Thomas), the distinction between congruous and condign merit was a way of considering the same human action performed on the ba

New Center for Barth Studies Book Review

Jesse Couenhoven has reviewed Neil B. MacDonald and Carl Trueman (eds.), Calvin, Barth, and Reformed Theology (Paternoster, 2008). He does a nice job of parsing out the contents and indentifying their strengths and weaknesses. Of course, readers of DET need no explanation as to why a volume of this might be interesting. Be sure to check it out .

Trinity and Christology According to Gunton

****For those of you following the saga, I have passed my oral exam. All that now remains is the dissertation proposal, and that small matter of actually writing the dissertation. While I'm worrying about that, please enjoy the following.**** “What, then, is the relation of the doctrine of the Trinity to…christology…? Pannenberg has famously said…that the trouble with traditional christologies is that they make the mistake of presupposing the doctrine of the Trinity. Rather, he holds, any doctrine of the Trinity must be the outcome of christological thought. In a sense, the latter is true. A [proper] doctrine of the Trinity…can only be the result of thought about the economy of salvation through Christ and the Spirit. That is the necessary order of knowing: from God’s relatedness to the world, make known in Christ, to a doctrine of his eternal being in relation. But the order of being must take a different orientation. If there is to be talk of the incarnation, it must pres

T.F. Torrance on Karl Barth's Significance

This is from the first page of Torrance’s introduction to Barth’s Theology and Church: Shorter Writings, 1920-1928 (Louise Pettibone Smith, trans.; New York: Harper & Row, 1962). Karl Barth is the greatest theological genius that has appeared on the scene for centuries. He cannot be appreciated except in the context of the greatest theologians such as Athanasius, Augustine, Anselm, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, Schleiermacher, Kierkegaard, nor can his thinking be adequately measured except in the context of the whole history of theology and philosophy. Not only does he recapitulate in himself in the most extraordinary way the development of all modern theology since the Reformation, but he towers above it in such a way that he has created a situation in the Church, comparable only to the Reformation, in which massive clarification through debate with the theology of the Roman Church can go on. Karl Barth has, in fact, so changed the whole landscape of theology, Evangelical and Roman