A Brief Book Summary from Books At a Glance
Editor’s Note: Today we continue our series of “bonus” summaries covering all thirty-six chapters of the monumental volume, The Enduring Authority of the Christian Scriptures (D.A. Carson, ed.).
Chapter 9: The Answering Speech of Men: Karl Barth on Holy Scripture
by David Gibson
(Summarized by Mark Coppenger)
David Gibson gives Karl Barth’s view of Scripture a very sympathetic reading, but, in the end, finds that Barth comes up short on clarity and fidelity to the traditional, high view of the text. Barth’s talk of the Bible’s being a “witness” to revelation and of its “becoming” the word of God, rather than its “being” the word of God has put off Evangelicals committed to inerrancy. (As Barth put it, “For me the Word of God is a happening, not a thing. Therefore, the Bible must become the Word of God, and it does this through the work of the Spirit.”) But widely published Barth scholar Bruce McCormack (Charles Hodge Professor Systematic Theology at Princeton Seminary; recipient of the 1998 Karl Barth Prize; and member of the Karl Barth Foundation) thinks Evangelicals are failing to give Barth a fair shake, and Gibson uses McCormack as a both counselor and foil in spelling out Barth’s perspective.
The best take Gibson can offer on Barth is that he presents a both/and approach, analogous to a father’s telling his already-a-man son on the occasion of some. . .[To continue reading this summary, please see below....]
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The Enduring Authority of the Christian Scriptures