May 26, 2017

Ten Theses on Biblical Theology

Scott Hafemann along with Richard Schultz developed the following “Ten Theses on Biblical Theology.”

1. Biblical theology should be biblical, taking the canon in its entirety as its starting point and criterion.

2. Biblical theology should be theological, aiming at making synthetic assertions about the nature, will, and plan of God in creation and redemption, as well as their corresponding implications for the nature, will, and purposes of humanity.

3. Biblical theology should be historical, contextual, and thematic in its methodology, integrating historical development, literary structures, sociocultural factors, and theological concepts within an understanding of the history of redemption.

4. Biblical theology should develop its theological categories inductively from the biblical text, not from a predetermined systematic framework.

5. Biblical theology should be exegetically based, taking intertextuality as its starting point., including both the “OT” use of the “OT” and the “NT” use of the “OT” as preserved in the MT and LXX traditions.

6. Biblical theology should be intentionally bi-testamental and unifying, so that neither the OT nor NT are read in isolation from each other nor from the standpoint of a “canon within a canon.”

7. Biblical theology should work toward a unity of canon, going beyond the traditional disciplines of OT and NT theology and beyond providing simply descriptive accounts of the various theological emphases within its individual writings.

8. Biblical theology should strive to incorporate the diversity of the biblical writings within the unity of its theology, without sacrificing either its historical particularity or its overarching history of redemption.

9. Biblical theology should be both descriptive and prescriptive in order to be faithful to its theological task of providing an enduring contribution to the self-understanding of God’s people within their contemporary context.

10. Biblical theology should be pursued by means of an intentional dialogue within the body of Christ in order to overcome the lamentable specialization of biblical scholars and be viewed as a profoundly spiritual calling in order to be faithful to the biblical witness.

Scott Hafemann, “What’s the Point of Biblical Theology? Reflections Prompted by Brevard Childs,” in BiblicalTheology: Past, Present, and Future, ed. Corey Walsh and Mark. W Elliott, (Cascade: Eugene, OR, 2016), 118-19.

No comments: