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The Difference Between Sola Scriptura And Biblicism (R. Scott Clark)

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by thatbrian, Mar 19, 2018.

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  1. thatbrian

    thatbrian Well-Known Member
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    See, @rlvaughn this is banter.
     
  2. thatbrian

    thatbrian Well-Known Member
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    Oddly enough, R. Scott Clark just wrote a piece that addressed something that came up in this thread. It's too late in the game to discuss it here, but you may be interested. It hits on a comment that you make and Tom took issue with.

    There are far too few thinkers in the Church. Clark is a thinker, so in spite of his flaws:

    Where Were The Church And The Truth Between The Fathers And The Reformation?
     
  3. thatbrian

    thatbrian Well-Known Member
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    Other's may define biblicism differently, but I like Frame's definitions. All of them can be seen in the church today, but #3 and #4 are what I think Clark is addressing in his piece.

    (1) someone who has no appreciation for the importance of extra-biblical truth in theology, who denies the value of general or natural revelation,

    (2) those suspected of believing that Scripture is a “textbook” of science, or philosophy, politics, ethics, economics, aesthetics, church government, etc.,

    (3) those who have no respect for confessions, creeds, and past theologians, who insist on ignoring these and going back to the Bible to build up their doctrinal formulations from scratch,

    (4) those who employ a “proof texting” method, rather than trying to see Scripture texts in their historical, cultural, logical, and literary contexts.

    In Defense of Something Close to Biblicism: Reflections on Sola Scriptura and History in Theological Method
     
  4. TCassidy

    TCassidy Late-Administator Emeritus
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    To deny the existence of dissenters prior to Luther is simply ignorance of ecclesiastical history. And his initial thesis is pejorative as nobody familiar with ecclesiastical history believes "the Church" was in the Alps sealed in a jar.

    But can we really expect balance from someone from the "United Reformed Churches in North America?"
     
  5. kyredneck

    kyredneck Well-Known Member
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  6. I Love An Atheist

    I Love An Atheist Active Member

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    I like this. I would compare it to reading the novel before you read what the critic says about the novel. What would be even worse would be to only read criticism and interpretation, or only read the Cliff Notes, but never read the novel for yourself. It doesn't mean there is not a time and a place for all of the criticism and interpretation and Cliff Notes. Not a perfect analogy, but hopefully some approximation of what you meant.
     
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  7. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    The biblical point, as the scriptures do not allow for any additional revelation, nor inspired apostles/prophets, after death of John!
     
  8. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn Well-Known Member
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    Even if we have trouble agreeing with the definitions, most of us might be able to agree that there we know people like all four -- may even be one of them. While I don't agree with everything Frame says, he obviously sees the need to keep the line drawn taut on both ends, lest we run into the rock on one side or the other. I want to kind of juxtapose below what he says "on both ends," so to speak.
    I particularly like this observation. I think we all have a tendency on a medium like this to jaw on about what we think of this or that, without ever making any reference to the scriptural thought behind it.

    I also like the six points near his conclusion, which posit exercising caution: "The argument of this paper, however, should help us to guard against certain abuses of the confessionalist position, such as (1) emphasizing Confessions and traditions as if they were equal to Scripture in authority, (2) equating sola Scriptura with acceptance of confessional traditions, (3) automatic suspicion of any ideas which come from sources outside the tradition, (4) focusing on historical polemics rather than the dangers of the present day, (5) emphasizing differences with other confessional traditions to the virtual exclusion of recognizing commonalities, (6) failing to encourage self-criticism within our particular denominational, theological, and confessional communities."
     
  9. thatbrian

    thatbrian Well-Known Member
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    Having been to a couple of URCNA churches, I would say, no. They can be very wooden (IMO). Having said that, proper self-awareness tells us that we all think we are middle-of-the-road.

    I don't consider Michael Horton imbalanced and he is a URCNA minister.
     
  10. thatbrian

    thatbrian Well-Known Member
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    I can only speak from my experience, but I don't think this is an actual problem.

    Again, who does this?

    I disagree with Frame here (but read more before getting too upset). New ideas, and/or ideas outside of out tradition should be treated suspiciously. That does not mean they are to be automatically rejected, but it means that they should be treated with caution.

    This is a problem.

    This is also a problem, and the "Truly Reformed" can be guilty of this.

    I don't know if I would encourage it, but we do need to be open to it. People who are confident in their positions can do this, while people who aren't cannot.

    The truth lies in a tension of two apparent contradictory ideas.
     
  11. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn Well-Known Member
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    I know some people I think qualify. One is a "tradition" (but possibly not in the way that Frame defines it) of the Two-Wine Theory. It is a tradition that can hardly be assailed with Scripture, because it is a theory that "sits above" Scripture and a grid that Scripture must be run through to get the right answer (I see the idea of Conditional Time Salvation much the same.)

    I once knew a man who was so thoroughly committed to the 18th Article of the New Hampshire Confession that he couldn't or wouldn't fellowship with any premillennialists whatsoever. Now I think he actually rooted his own belief in Scripture, but very often he argued with other Baptists from the supremacy of the 18th Article (almost like it was something God handed down out of heaven).
    Out of this six, this one speaks the least to my experience. I expect Frame thinks he has run across such folks, or he wouldn't have mentioned.
    Here is another of those keeping-it-in-the-middle things, imo. Conservatism is always suspicious of something new, and rightly should be. But if we're never open to consider any "new ideas" we are solidly set in the fix of being the only ones who are right.
    I agree, even though I am apparently a little tense toward one side and you toward another.
     
  12. thatbrian

    thatbrian Well-Known Member
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    No that you put skin on it, I can see that there are people out there guilty of this. Fortunately for me, I just don't personally know any.

    Who has perfect knowledge? Where I have found any bit of balance it has been when I have spent much time with those of different opinion.
     
  13. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn Well-Known Member
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    As I continued to consider this a bit more, I think one thing I differ most with Clark and Frame is in the terminology. I don't see Sola Scriptura and biblicism as two mutually exclusive ideas. So I don't see those who hold Sola Scriptura as doing it right, and biblicists as getting it wrong. I'd tend, instead, to see biblicists as folks who hold Sola Sciptura. I wouldn't define biblicism by those aberrations, but I do see people with some of the hermeneutical problems articulated by them.
     
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